Friday, 30 August 2013

sewing and knitting, spinning, sewing and knitting

Well I got the shirt cut out, and have started sewing it together.  I have two sleeves made now.  I will wash it gently when it's completed and hope for the best.  I was worried about washing it before sewing because of how loosely woven the fabric is.  Try as I might, I just couldn't get the weave to tighten up.

So fingers crossed.

While I was weaving, and waiting for starch to dry, I was also knitting.  I got another pair of stockings made for Pierre and a pair of mitts made for me.  The mitts are not my best work, done in a bit of a hurry and with not enough yarn.  I ended up going up to the yarn shop yesterday and spending far too much on a bit of fleece to spin some more.  The spin was also in a bit of a rush and on a drop spindle, so my tension isn't the greatest, but I got enough spun up to finish the thumb.  Pierre couldn't tell the difference between the two mits...
The second is a bit shorter than the first, and I knit the thumb better in the second than on the first, so despite the badly spun bit, I am happier with the second mitt than the first.

But I'll have warm arms this weekend.

Today we head out to the 18thC for our last encampment of the season.  The summer seems to fly by so quickly.  And we didn't get out much this summer, with family plans and Pierre being under the weather.  Slowly though, we are getting our kit the way we want it and things are going a bit more smoothly.  Fine tuning now.

I'm not going to be taking on any more new people, sponsoring them into the hobby, right now.  Rave has left for school, but is good to go.  Laura and Garth are almost there,  Catherine is well on her way too, Artemis is the next to get geared up and ready.  Then I think I will take a break and just be for a while.  It's a lot of work to get people geared up to play authentically, and I am also teaching, writing a thesis and hosting workshops this fall/winter.  My brain is tired thinking about it!

Well, I should go pack the kitchen...

Monday, 26 August 2013

it's been a while...

I have been a weaving fiend!  And quite honestly, so exausted at the end of the day that I haven't thought to post anything here.  I have been weaving...and knitting while I wait for starch to dry.

There was 5m of warp in that batch and I managed to get 4.5m woven before the shed wouldn't open any more.  If I cut it well, I should have no problem getting a shirt made and maybe an apron.  My back is knackered though, and have I mentioned that I am tired?

Here's some pics that Pierre too last week...!/photo.php?fbid=10151843927804669&set=pcb.10151843928109669&type=1&theater

Next photos will be of a shirt!

My opening will be at the Mary Black Gallery on September 5th at 6pm.  If I have made you an historic costume, I'd love for you to wear it.

Monday, 19 August 2013

Waiting for starch to dry

Got in early enough this morning, bought starch on the way.  I gave the warp another good spray down, and then waited...

While I was waiting for starch to dry, I finished off the second sock of Pierre's second pair of buff coloured stockings.  Now he has two pair that colour.  Mitts for me goon the needles tonight.  I have two weeks until the Citadel, hopefully I can get them knitted up.

The weaving is going well enough.  I have woven a couple of repeats now, and just sprayed the warp again and am taking a break.  Found an ice cream sandwich in the freezer from a picnic Garth and Laura brought me one day last month.  It was just what I needed.
Now to finish my coffee and continue weaving.

Saturday, 17 August 2013

finally weaving...

Well, last week I wound the warp on to the front beam and then tied it to the back and wound it on the back beam.  Everyone who had heard what happened were heartbroken, especially those who have helped me all summer.  Garth wondered how we were going to get it on the back beam again.  He was surprized at how quickly it went.

Yesterday, once a migraine cleared, I set out to weave.  And weave I did!  It takes some work to get the shed open enough to throw the shuttle, but I am getting the hang of it.  Foot peddle, the by hand, seperate the shed, hold the harnesses down that need to be down to keep the shed open wide, throw the shuttle.  I am also carrying the threads I am not using up the sides of the selvage, so with the throwing of the shuttle, I have to remember twist the two shuttles before throwing again.  This keeps the two colours carrying up the sides neatly and without having to thread ends in all the time.

The check is working out almost two what I have imagined, I'm not sure how to get it tight enough to keep the pattern.  I might try some things at the end, once I get enough for a shirt woven.  I have some ideas, and if it was this time last month, like I'd planned, I might play a bit more, but right now I have a deadline.

But I'm weaving!

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

sometimes fate has a way of making you see things differently...

shortly after my post this morning, before my tears dried, before I stopped crying even, a man walked into my studio and asked how I was doing.  I told him that he caught me on a bad day, that my warp had a critical failure.

"Oh, my wife's a weaver, that happens all the time, I usually go to the pub until the dust settles." he said "Let me go get her!"

And so I met the right person at the right time.  Laurie Gundersen and her husband talked me out of my temper tantrum and gave me hope for my warp.  Her work can be seen here

The warp has been cut where it started to tangle, I'll deal with that later, much later, when I have my own studio again...a non air conditioned studio, with a big table to lay it out on.  For now, it will live in a ziplock bag.

After supper, Pierre and I are going to go back down town and deal with getting that warp back on the back beam.  It will go on and there will be shirt!
I am not a hack, I can do this.  It's not rocket science.

Thank you Laurie safe drive back to Virginia.

I so want this shirt warp to happen,you really have no idea.

I sat with all the patience I could muster.  I opened the shed and very carefully eased the shuttle across.  I did this a total of three times, just working i thick cotton yet, so I can establish the straight.  I noticed my tension was slacking off, so I tightened the front beam a bit and started on the fifth row and poof...

well it was more like an ooze.  The sides of my warp slackened even more as the warp on the back beam slid off the edges.  I screamed NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!

and started to cry.

I unwound the warp off the back beam, crocheting it up as I went.  It is now sitting on the back cross bar as I sit here and figure out what to do next.  I am heart broken.

I wanted this to work.  I wanted to say that yes, I hand made those shirts that Pierre wears, I wove the cloth even.  I wanted to do that for me, not for any recognition or awards, just to know that I had the ability to do it.  I am not thinking I have that ability any more.  I am feeling like a real hack right now.

Monday, 12 August 2013

ARGHHHH! I will not set fire to my loom. I will not set fire to my loom. I will not...

The warp is now fully threaded and tied on to the loom.  I had hoped to start weaving today, but that is not to be the case.  I opened the shed to throw my first shuttle across and the shed would not open.  I teased the shed open and gently eased the shuttle across.  I brought the reed forward and attempted to open the shed again.  Nope.  would not move.  So I teased it open again and gently pushed the shuttle through the second time.  Oh, this is going to be tedious, isn't it.

Then I attempted to bring the reed forward again, nope, not moving.

Bunches of threads loosened up and I retied a bunch, then attempted again.  Nope.

Argh.  F@#K!

I emptied a half a can of spray starch on the bitch and informed my family that I was on my way home.

I am home now and will spend the afternoon knitting.  Because I can handle one thread at a time right now.  Three hundred threads, nope.

Maybe tomorrow I will be able to start weaving.

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Missing my Belle-girl

Well, for a woman who spent a lot of the morning thinking about all the times she screwed up over her career, and deeply missing her Belle-puppie, the day turned itself around really well!

This weekend, Garth and Pierre helped me get the last of the warp on the back beam...kermit flail!  Yesterday I started threading heddles, a job I truly love.  I should be weaving by the end of the week.  This morning we had mid summer crits, which went really well.  I am inspired by the other residents!  Holy Bovine!  You guys have to come out for our show, there are some impressive artists working with me.  This afternoon, I continued threading heddles, I am now at the half way point...!/photo.php?v=10151806608784669&set=vb.606679668&type=2&theater

a little film, by Pierre, of me threading.  Yes, they will be that tightly packed when I weave, the thread is that fine.  Tomorrow I will continue to thread.

Tomorrow I also meet with Dr Randi, getting started on the thesis, or at least back on track with it.  My brain has been wandering, so I need to get focused again before I lose momentum and wander off completely and do something else.  Though the work of one of the jewellery residents had me thinking Punk jewellery this morning, safety pins and such...

I got home about 330 to a phone call from Gary at NSCAD.  He was now allowed to call and offer me the job teaching Fashion Construction this Fall.  So exciting!  I need to be in that studio this winter, getting inspired and working on all the fashion ideas that I am going to have whilst studying Punk.  I already have ideas...a new collection of clothes in in the air, I can feel it!  I wonder if I can do that as part of the thesis paper???

So I am not a hack.  I have what it takes to get a job in my field, a good job!  Whoot!!!

Saturday, 3 August 2013

one foot in front of the other...

Laundry continues, but then doesn't it for everyone?  Our laundry room looks like a linen bomb went off in it, with shifts and shirts and such hanging on the lines insie because it threatened rain all day yesterday.  Today I will put the feather bedding out on the outside line to air out...and finish the laundry.  Yeah!

I didn't get the technician's job at NSCAD.  Gary called last night to let me know.  Adam got it, which is a much better choice for all concerned.  He gets more hours, the department gets a bit on continuity and I get time to work on my thesis.  I did apply for a teaching job there though, Fashion Construction.  That would work better for me both in short term and long term.  One class I can handle and still write.

The next event we are looking forward to is the Citadel on Labour day.  Just two events this summer, but with Pierre being under the weather and not knowing when his surgery date was, we couldn't comit to any more.  One foot in front of the other though, two is better than none!

The shirt warp continues to be starched and wrangled.  Got another 5m on the back beam this week, and may be able to get the last 5m on this weekend.  We'll see.  I'd really like to start weaving it this week!

anyway, just a quick update, back to laundry!