Sunday, May 31, 2009

Tyson is growing

Here is a new pic of Tyson:

He/she is loosing its baby fluff and growing real feathers. Right now its sporting a cute little mohawk. And yes, it's still in the house!
And for all of those who asked: Tyson is a chicken that we hand raise from the day it was hatched.

Little bitty gloves

Just finished these little fingerless gloves for the 5 year old daughter of a customer:

arent they cute? but i tell you ,very tricky cause theyre sooo little!


Just took my first huckaback towel towel off the loom. I used the Two Stick Heading described by 'Dust Bunnies under my Loom" here , because i still have warp left for a second towel but wanted to see how the first one came out without having to wait to finish both.

I had intended for them to be one color each, one blue, one red.
After i started i realized i didn't dye enough yardage of each color so i decided to stripe it , i call it "Red, White and Blue".
I had one warp string break, which i fixed:
and i discovered a threading error about halfway through(fifth square from the left) in one of the squares. It shouldn't be at all noticeable after finishing
and here it is
unfinished size : 22" x 35" its BIG

Friday, May 29, 2009

Lease Sticks for sale

Well, i guess I'll be offering the Lease Sticks sooner than i thought. After my first order (thanks Dave :), I decided there is no time than the present and to start listing them in my etsy shop. Anybody in need of a sett , don't hesitate to contact me I'll be making as many as i can this weekend.

more spun yarn for Dave's SoSC

I finally finished my first batch of the super wash merino "periwinkle blue".
I got four bobbins full of very fine singles:

I plied two bobbins into this very fine, fragile two ply.
The twist on the singles is not as much as i wanted but it will be OK for weft. It really is very soft.
I got 278 yards out of the two bobbins and should get about that much on the other two.
12-13 WPI.
Now of to spinning the dark denim...

OTHER people have cats/dogs...

Not us, oh no!
WE have a spoiled rotten chicken:
Tyson and hubster taking a break:

Hey, that's my spot..again.. :(

None of the dogs are allowed in the house but Tyson hangs out on the couch!
He doesn't know yet but by the time the weekend is through he will be outside.
Poop spots grow with the chick.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

DIY lease sticks

Today i finally finished those home made lease sticks I've been wanting to make.
I used red cedar boards we had left over from panelling our living room. They re rough cut and have been laying out in the garage for a couple of years.
We cut several 35 inch pieces and ripped them into 1/4 inch thick 2 inch wide sticks.
I got all my tools together:

little hand sander, little saw, scissors, sandpaper(various weights), clamp, something small with rounded edges, pencil.

I cut one of the long sticks into two 15 inch pieces, clamped them down and sanded both sides until they where nice and smooth:

before & after :

then i marked the edges with whatever round something i can find:

and sanded them down:

then i marked the lines for the beveled edges (one long side and the ends):

sanded them down, hand sanded a little with the fine sand paper , rubbed them with lind seed oil and ... voila:
i did the two 15 inch and one 32 inch today before the rain made me quit.
I like them a lot. i might make some to put in my shop.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Speedy's first vacation (warning:lots of pics)

We went to our favorite camping spot on the Tennessee River Thursday for a long weekend of relaxation.We took the four wheeler and the boat (yes , we are rednecks and proud of it!)
Of course we had to take Speedy along, can't leave the baby home alone!
Oh, by the way, Speedy is now "Tyson" like in ..."we do chicken right."
Sorry, we do have a rather dark kind of humor.

Anywho, we got there Thursday afternoon, set up camp:

Yes, that is a school bus! We bought it three years ago and converted it into an RV, they are called Skoolies. It's a work in progress but this is what it looks like right now:

front (kitchenette):

back: table, bed :

there is still lots to be done(curtains,shelves,small bathroom,paint outside) but its usable for right now.

So, we settled down for some relaxing... until the family found out. All of a sudden we had a camp full of people.
As all good parents would, we fed them , entertained them and after awhile we where alone again.

We went fishing , John got lucky and caught a BIG catfish:

going to release the poor thing:

then we sat by the fire for a spell:

next day we went beach combing a little:

napped a lot, ate a lot(always tastes better grilled on an open fire).

enjoyed a beautiful sunset:

Next couple of days was a little rainy, not all the time but several showers a day with breaks of sunshine in between, so we never got to use the boat. You definitely do not want to be caught on the river in bad weather!
All in all it was a good weekend but I'm also glad to be back home.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

more fiber carded

just spend a few minutes on the carder (had to get away from the wheel a while, my back felt like breaking in half).
I found some more superwash, supersoft merino in a soft, soft baby blue:
and then i took my bag of very bright leftovers from previous cardings and put them all together and got this crazy batt:
That should make a cool yarn!!! i think when i'm done with the periwinkle/denim (got two and a half bobbins so far) i'll spin this one next.

NOT a big help

Speedy has now graduated to secretary(not a very good one):

When i work on the PC it'll scamper up my leg and hop on to the table.From there it( we still don't know if hen or rooster, pleese don't let it be a rooster !)will piddle around on the keyboard,(thank goodness it's not heavy enough to compress the keys, yet) check out the mouse, peck here, peck there,poop here,poop there(man, it poops a lot!!).I'm constantly wiping off poop. Speedy is not allowed on my shoulder anymore for that reason. It's the lap with a towel under it.
It runs loose in the house most of the day but stays really close to us.If i leave the room in a hurry and it looses me it gets really upset, running around, calling (good lungs, very noisy).
Y'all should hear the noise it makes running across the kitchen floor with it's flat little feet! Too cute !
i really don't know what its going to do when we have to put it out(unfortunately chickens don't potty train).SPEEDY! not on my slippers !!!...

By the way, we don't know what happened to our owl chick.A few days after i took the last pictures i noticed that the mama didn't sit on the nest any more at all, i also could not see the chick peeking out anymore.Mama hung around for a few more days then disappeared. Sad!
I had really hoped it would make it!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Catch of the day

John caught some nice size catfish out of our pond this morning.

I fillet them just minutes after they came out of the water.
This will be a typical souther dinner : collard greens, hush puppies, fried catfish fillets.
We'll be eatin' good tonight....

Saturday, May 16, 2009


Spun a few yards test yarn with the light periwinkle blue.
this pic really doesnt do the color justice, i'll try to get a better one whenever the sun comes out (if ever, haven't seen it in days,just rain, rain ,rain)

it came out just the way i wanted. perfect! I love this fiber, it spins like butter and is sooo soft.
i took a little and plied it with itself.I got a ratio of 16 wpi.I think thats somewhere between a fingering and lace. Sweet!! I did try to ply some with the mohair but didn't like that at all!
so, i'll be plying it with itself and maybe some i will mix the colors in a barber pole ply.This will take me several days to do, since its so thin and i've got 12 oz of this.
back to the wheel...

Spinning challenge

so here is some more fiber i am fixing to spin up for Dave's Summer Spinning Challenge:

I've got about 4 oz of the dark and 8 oz of the light . It's a superwash merino and the colors are light periwinkle? and a medium denim. The fiber is supersoft and has a lovely shine.

I'll try to spin it a thin as possible(maybe i can get it in a lace weight?) and then i'll probably ply it with some very thin mohair in a like color (or close to it) so it will full and stick to each other when woven.

I've got some Lyon Brand Moonlight Mohair that i'm going to separate, using the mohair strand to ply with.
Off to the wheel i go...

Monday, May 11, 2009

Rockaby chicky

Speedy has decided that my foot on the threadle during spinning is a nice place to take a snooze, i guess the rocking motion does it. What a Baby!!!

getting comfy:

close your little eyes:

sound asleep:

everybody go : aaaawwww...

spun, plied,nowhere to go...

i plied the singles i spun up last week and got the softest ,squishiest yarn.
I'm very pleased with it, this time it did not come out harsh and wiry.
soft, soft. soft!!
I like the colors too, i wasn't quite sure if i should ply it with itself or a solid single but then i would have to make my mind up about the color for that: light, dark?? so i decided just to ply with itself and i think it looks just great:

I've got 555 yards so far, maybe another 100 or so to go.
This should make a good size shawl for ME, ME ,ME!!! :)

now i have to decide what to use for warp. I've got a commercially spun soft 100% merino yarn, i think that will do nicely. so now, what color do i dye that? dark brown, light brown, burgundy?
i really don't know, I'm not mentally there yet to envision what it may look like.
well i have some time to decide because first i have to finish the towels that are still occupying the loom.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Chick magnet

we have another new addition to the family:

speedy was born (or egged?) on wednesday. He/she(don't know yet if hen or rooster) is a Auracana-mix . Mother is still sitting on the rest of the eggs( i dont think they will hatch), so i took speedy and brought him/her inside to hand raise(another spoiled pet !).
Speedy took up with John right away:

I m a wee bit jealous:they're sitting on the couch in a huddle , feeping(word?) at each other and i swear once in a while they look at me and snicker! i sense conspiracy!!

speedy snuggles up on johns neck (hey, thats MY spot!!) and goes sound to sleep.
It calls desperately for him when he's gone.
As soon as john comes in the house he's like:' "where is my little buddy?"
I've been replaced by another chick!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

It's all Dave's fault!

Well, i finally got cracking on Dave's Summer of Spinning challenge.
I sorted fibers ( some of what i got stashed) Saturday and Sunday.
This is about 1/5th of what i got:
Everything from raw, unwashed fleeces to ready to spin fibers.

I picked out about 16 oz of natural colored fibers and some white washed locks which i dyed in more natural colors:

There is some baby Shetland ( soft,soft,soft), Alpaca(soft),Cotswold(for shine),silk(! 'nuff said),
and some mystery x-bred yearling fiber(merino? soft and lofty).
after dyeing and mixing and carding this is what i got:
Nice Autumny colors.
and after spinning it up on my Ashford Traveller:
two and one half bobbins of soft lace weight singles:

I've had problems with spinning thin yarns before , they came out over twisted and wiry.
I took my traveller apart a few month ago to finish it in a dark mahogany. i started but got sidetracked and quit about halfway through.So it's been sitting in the studio since before Christmas.Now with Dave's challenge i did not want to wait to finish it so i just put it back together half done:

and for some odd reason it spins so much better now, i can actually manipulate the settings where i can get a yarn that is thin but soft.Search me!!

Now for the next batch to ply with:

again some Cotswold locks i dyed copper(looks like orange but i will mix it with something darker),the x-bred fleece dyed chocolate brown,natural baby Shetland(man that stuff is soft!)
and merino in dark brown.I'll be busy with the carder for awhile.
I'm going to weave shawl or a very wide scarf (depending on how much yardage i"m going to end up with) in a 2/2 twill pattern, for : my selfish :) i hope it comes out all soft and snugly warm .

In between i pulled out some black super wash merino, mixed it with lots of recycled sari silk bits and spun that up on my Kromski Prelude:
That will make a stunning scarf!

Not sure yet what color warp I'm going to use yet. Maybe black?, or a really deep dark red?, or a very colorful variegated yarn in the colors of the silk bits?. any input greatly appreciated :).
better run, i can hear the carder calling. THANKS DAVE for getting my butt in gear !!