Thursday, March 5, 2015

It actually SNOWED!!

Here it is.....drum roll if you please.....

Actual snow in Texas. Finally last night, a few granules of snow fell on our snowbird haven.
Dawn is breaking and it's windy and cool out. No more precipitation in the forecast and probably just one more night below freezing and we're done with this "snowy winter".

It seems like a day to hunker down at home and focus on the Three Cs:
Creature Comforts
and Crafts.

Yes, you're right. That's every day.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Cold and crafty days

Here is a simple embroidery or tapestry frame that I have snagged for a band weaving loom. I am practising my pick-up technique, something I used to do a lot of as a child. It is not hard to do, but it will take a while for my edges and tension to be even. It's really quite fun though. I am using cotton for both warp and weft.

 This photo is of the WooLee Winder on my Polonaise wheel . We have been working together ( machine and I) to make a gorgeous single out of merino wool.

The glamour shot.

The lustre and soft, sexy shot.

The fiber I am using is from Fat Cat Knits in New York state. Here's what it looks like in the braid (combed top). I have bought a fair bit of it. I suspect I will be  making at least a two ply yarn, although 3 ply is calling out to me.

After my art yarn play time of a couple of weeks ago I still had some alpaca woolen singles left over. Today I plied that with a Lionheart ladder yarn called Trellis. The latter was a very excellent thrift store find. I like how the little metallic looking flags in the novelty yarn offset the smooshy softness of the white alpaca.

It almost looks like a beaded yarn.

And on the knitting needles is sock number two of the Turkish sock saga. I knit this up as a sample for a class I recently taught. I haven't yet blocked or woven in ends. Maybe I will get some better shots once the pair are totally done.

With temperatures just around freezing and damp weather on top of the chill, Texas is experiencing what passes for a hard winter here. We have not had snow yet this winter. But there is a little ice out there. Stay warm and stay crafty!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

A little of this, a little of that

First off I finally finished 8 oz of a targhee and bamboo blend. It was a joy to spin, but because I chose thin and worsted, it took awhile. Sila the Polonaise was the workhorse on this one. I have one bobbin full and haven't decided yet what to do next.

I recently picked up some old weaving and spinning equipment, along with cellulose fiber dyes. In the box of gear were two loom cranks that I didn't need. Luckily I quickly found homes for them through Ravelry.
A bunch of window-related work has just begun around the rock house. Many panes of glass have been broken by lawnmowers throwing up rocks in the summer time. For some reason when we mow in the winter this never happens. Tomorrow the glass company is here to replace panes and re-glaze a couple more windows.

To avoid any more breakage, I have metal screens being custom made to fit all the windows of the house. The old paint around the windows is mostly black and is overdue for a paint job. Above you can also see a "lovely" shade of green that the previous owner got creative with. Whatever were they thinking? Some very old wood screens were covering the green for the last few years, but it's time for it all to go.

This window was my test case today. I scraped off old paint, sanded down all surfaces, painted on a stain-covering primer that can cover both oil and latex, and then gave it a coat of the new colour. The metal screens will be a very dark bronze and so I am trying out the same colour on the windows themselves. What do you think? Likely it will need another coat, but I want to make sure this one is cured before I go ahead with another. There is a sample screen leaning against the sill at bottom right.

Here is the driveway side, the south side, of our home. So the window I tested out today is the one at the far left. This is after I painted it. I do believe that it goes quite well with the natural and multi-hued rocks of the wall. So there is a lot of work ahead of me now. BS is not keen about painting so this is a "me" job. I bet it will all look pretty slick when it's done and the glass will be better protected.