Saturday, February 28, 2015


 I decided to do a little beaded embellishments. Above I used some green and gold glass beads. I'm using Nymo beading thread as it's very strong and the beads won't cut it, I have several colors of it.

 Here I've used some gold and clear/gold glass beads. On the final scarf off this warp that had a rust weft I added some seed beads to the twisted fringes but forgot to take a picture.

 I got a warp on the loom for 3 cotton/rayon shawls in a lace weave structure. I decided to try out adding beads while hemstitching. Worked just fine although it's tougher to get the thread (5/2 size) through the beads, many reject beads but I'll have enough for this shawl. (For non-weavers - ignore the turquoise woven part, was just quickly spreading out the warp and making sure all the heddles were threaded correctly)

Here's the start of the shawl with the beads hemstitched on. I'm considering cutting this first shawl off the loom (when finished) to wash it and see how I like the beading before I weave the other shawls. I may or may not want to use this beading technique on the others. I don't usually do this as to not waste warp but since the warp ends to tie on and spread out will be used as fringe I won't actually have any loss.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Beach decor

In 4 days of painting kitchen cabinet doors at the beach cottage we found a little time to go to second hand stores. I found some wonderful silver trays for $2.00, $1.50 and another small one (not pictured) for 25 cents!  Above is a work in progress on the dining table. I have a little silver bowl to add to the mix next time over. I love the mercury glass pieces I found for less than $10 for the two of them. I have fabric set aside to sew some quilted placemats for the table - just need to find some time for it.

This tray is on the coffee table, will look for some old silver candlesticks I've had for eons to add to this.

As I was painting cabinet doors I was dreaming about getting back home so I could get back to my current spinning, get a shawl warp on the loom, twist fringe on scarves, design and sew quilted placemats...........then reality set in - way too much administrivia to deal with including pulling together all tax 'stuff', personally and business, so I can sit in front of the computer for even more hours with Turbo Tax.  Ah, the downside to having a business..........

Wednesday, February 18, 2015


 I've been spinning those colorful rolags I made on my blending board. I'm thinking the handspun is looking very tropical. I'm making rolags as I'm spinning until I get enough yarn.

 Here's the first monster skein.  I haven't counted up the yards yet to know how much more I need to spin......guess I better do that soon. I'm thinking of knitting or weaving a summer tropical shawl - wearing it will make me think I'm in the Caribbean with a fruity drink in hand.......instead of on the cool Oregon coast.

I recently finished spinning a spiral yarn from a couple batts I bought at OFFF last year that were black baby alpaca with a rainbow of colors of silk. I plied it with a thread to get the spiral effect.  This will eventually become some sort of shawl. The picture really doesn't do this yarn justice - it's a really dark intense black and the shiny silk is beautiful.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Friday, February 13, 2015

Three scarves.........

 Some weaving today - scarf #1 using a deep rust I found hiding on the shelf, it's  a bit darker than the rust I auditioned yesterday.......

 ........scarf #2 using the sage green weft........

.......scarf #3 using taupe for the weft.  I really had wanted to go with a medium brown but I just don't have any in suitable fiber......which is hard to believe.  This one really doesn't look this washed out in person.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

The 8 yard warp that felt like 80.......

I'm not sure why it happens but occasionally on these painted warps when I go to wind the warp on the back beam I find a host of 'haloing'. As the warp is sliding through the lease sticks it stops in a tangled mess where there are halos around the threads catching them on their neighbors. I haven't figured out why this happens because it doesn't happen with every warp dyed using the same tencel, same dyes, same dye day. 

Anyhow, it was a challenge to say the least, getting it on the back beam.........very slow going.  But it's on now, heddles threaded, reed sleyed and weft auditions in the works. The first weft, purple, is not being auditioned, it was just what was left on a bobbin that I used to spread out the warp.  The next weft color is a sage green, I like it. The rust is looking pretty overpowering, the gold a bit too gold in the picture - not quite as gold in person. Next up is taupe, very pale but I like it. Finally the tan which I don't like at all. I couldn't find a medium brown tencel in my stash - tomorrow I'll look through my rayon stash to see if I've got some. I might try a darker green too. I've got 3 scarves to weave on this warp and would like to use 3 different wefts so there are no two alike........I'll see what I can come up with.........

Tuesday, February 10, 2015


I finally got around to taking pictures of some scarves and shawls (both hand-dyed silk and woven) for the etsy shop - one of my dreaded chores as I'm not very good at it.  These two scarves are off the same hand-dyed warp - the top scarf I used a teal weft, the one below a fuchsia weft.

Update on my other etsy shop with fibers - I'm having a sale on all hand-dyed roving and yarn until it's gone. As I've said recently here I'm no longer going to be dyeing roving for sale, it's taking away from my weaving time. But I will continue to sell the Ashland Bay rovings. I'm anxious to empty the bins with the hand-dyed rovings so I can reorganize the others and hopefully have room to set up the treadmill again. There are a lot of bins - the biggest bins that can be bought........

And an update on the shawl that has been mailed off to the Lyric Opera in Chicago.  It's going to be worn by a lead in the new production of the Mariachi Opera called El Pasado Nunca Se Termina which plays on March 28th.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

New countertops

Thursday we had to rush over to the beach cottage, in a big rain/wind storm as new formica countertops were being installed on Friday..........we've been trying to get someone out to do them for 6 months so we couldn't postpone a sure thing.

First we had to pull off the old countertops which was easier said than done - here they are ready for the new. The old had been glued and screwed with the formica installed on top of that. We had to chip off the old formica to get to the screws and then try to pop the glue to get them off........many places they had to be sawed off.  What a job - we were worried we wouldn't be ready the next morning for the installer.

Here they are - formica with the look of marble. Where the old backsplash was removed is a mess - drywall work up next to repair before we put up a new backsplash.

This morning before heading home I taped brown kraft paper on the wall to audition how we want to install a glass backsplash. Now we have to go shopping to look for something in a glass tile maybe with a green seaglass look......we'll see what strikes us........that's affordable.

Now I need to get back to painting cabinets - I didn't want to start on the lowers until the countertops were installed. I still have doors to paint the second side of for over the fridge and the pantry cabinet that can't be seen in this pix. There was no painting this weekend in this storm, just too damp for it.

The kitchen looks so much bigger now - but you get more than one person in there and it still feels just as small as always........

Friday, February 6, 2015

A shawl goes to a night at the opera

This cotton and rayon summer shawl was purchased from my etsy shop yesterday. As usual I wrote a personal note to the buyer and then was pleasantly surprised to get a note back.  He said he was the costume designer for the Lyric Opera of Chicago and my shawl would be worn by a lead in an upcoming production.  How exciting.  I hope he gets back to me with which production as there's a big long list of them on the website scheduled for 2015. I always like to send a personal note to a buyer instead of them just getting the automated thank-you - sometimes it pays in me getting to know where my wovens are going........

**Opera Update**  It's going to be worn by a lead in the new production of the Mariachi Opera called El Pasado Nunca Se Termina which plays on March 28th.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015


In April I'm presenting a guild program over on the coast to a small fiber guild. It's a program I've given in years past for my local guilds - beaded embellishments for weaving - a focus on fringes. Today I decided I must sit down and update my handout and make sure the beading kits were all together as it's a hands-on program. I don't like to leave things like this until the last minute and I do have to start pulling together all the tax stuff, personal and business, and struggle through doing our taxes (argh) so I thought it best to get this done and out of the way. I have a number of scarf examples to share but needed something that wasn't woven as only half the small guild are weavers. I decided to put a sweet little fringe on one of my ice-dyed silk scarves.

Here I'm attaching the beads to the scarf using a size 12 beading needle, size 11 seed beads and green nymo beading thread.

And here's the first end finished, other end of the scarf didn't take terribly long to do. I love the little bit of bling the beads add. This scarf is one I put aside for myself when I did the ice-dying - it's going to be fun and cheery to wear this spring.  I can't wait to do more ice dyeing.

Check out this video of winter on the Oregon Coast - this is why we love it so much.  Of course we know better than to stand that close to the edge with huge waves - the ocean is very unpredictable and can sweep one into the water in a second.

Monday, February 2, 2015

More blending board fun

This afternoon I spent a little more time with the blending board. I added some Ashland Bay Peacock color roving to the mix I was working on the other day and am happy with it now.  Before I made more than one board's worth of rolags I spun a quick and dirty sample.  It's really colorful but I like it. So now I've got lots of rolags to make and start spinning.......very fun activity and it's something I can sneak in here and there in-between other projects.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Towels finished......

I love these towels - they look retro, kind of 30's/40's to me and I'm drawn to those textiles more and more these days. They coordinate with the tulip table runners I recently wove. These are in bright spring/easter colors that make me smile in our chill to the bone foggy weather..........I'm contemplating putting another warp on the loom in the not too distant future with a totally different color combo.  These are now up for sale in my etsy shop........well, minus the one I'm keeping for myself..........