Fiber

Shearing Day

IMG_5403

Jacob with his new haircut and forgotten tail. Yep a lot was going on with him.

So Mark wanted to try and shear the sheep. We did end up with one looking ok, but then it didn’t go well even with some advice. So next step? Check out to see if you can find a shearer to come and do it for you and watch. Mark emailed a contact he found that wasn’t too far away, and she was able to come out yesterday.

We were sure nervous about the whole ordeal. What to expect. What would happen. Were we set up like they would like. Too much to worry about for first timers. Especially when we needed to pen them up and not let them eat from noon the day before. Oops. We both forgot that one till about 4pm. They did end up with less than what they would normally eat from then on but still a bit much. Especially when we had a system we thought would work set up to pen them without food but some water. And the way it was done would make it easy to move them to be sheared.

Oh dear, I looked out the window at 7:20am (they were to arrive at 8am) and the sheep had escaped and were happily grazing away. We ran out so very fast and tried to get them penned back up without feed. Yeah! Right! So a bit of feed helped with the ordeal. But then we only got a little over half in the pen that they couldn’t get out of. So shut them up and then tried again with the rest at a less secure spot. Thankfully, they followed in, and Mark stayed guard.

Kathryn and her boyfriend arrived and got set up, and we got to the job. They have just started in the business and got their certifications this year. So we were their tenth farm to visit. What was nice is that they like doing small flocks yet as they aren’t fast and don’t like to rush it as they are still newish at it. They take their time and are very careful of cutting the sheep and actually are quite sorry when it happens, as it will happen. We all got along well, and it went smoothly. Well, smoothly for dealing with animals who aren’t happy with what is up.

IMG_5394.jpg

The group to end up in the less secure area

Above, can you see, not so little, Samuel with his tiny horns to the left of Sarah? He ended up with this lot while his mother was in the other pen. He decided he didn’t like this idea and needed his mother and the two of them held a loud conversation across the yard. Now, he could escape easily but wasn’t trying, and I tried to get him out which he wasn’t having any of. Life was just a bit stressful in the moment. He did finally make a break for it under the panel and got over to mom which had one side that the babies could get through Finally he felt safe with mom. Sarah, staring at us, wasn’t getting sheared today as we deemed her pretty good from when Mark tried her a few weeks before. Alas, she wasn’t sure why she was imprisoned with the rest this time. But it was much easier to have them all together than to sort them.

IMG_5399.jpg

Rebekah getting sheared again as she needed touched up from Mark’s job.

In the end, we had 9 sheep sheared. Three we declared good enough form Mark’s try. Above Rebekah had been attempted before but needed a new cut. So she is getting a second go in one season. I’m sure she didn’t appreciate that.

If you look at the pen behind. You can see that Samuel has made it over to mom. He is the brown littler one with his horns. All was now well for him. The four babies did all eventually get out and just go play. It is one the greatest joys on this small farm to watch the four of them playing together. They get along well.

And what is all this trouble for?

IMG_5400.jpg

Don’t remember whose fleece this is but I’m excited.

I had made a makeshift table to put the fleece on and do a quick sort of it and pull out the nasty bits and short bits and toss them to the side for the compost. Then I had some cloth bags I had made to stuff the fleece in for storage and wrote on each whose fleece it was.

IMG_5404.jpg

Getting on with it however it can be done for everyone’s ease

So in the picture above, There are three bags over the fence of fleece. I had already taken some to the house. The pile of what would go to the compost is beside the sawhorse. Little, or not so little, Joseph is out of focus by the water trough. Oh, and with their eating that shouldn’t have happened? We only had one, Peter, who pooped in the process of being sheared. Oops.

When all was done, we went up to my fiber room as they were interested in the Great Wheel Mark had made me. When they left, Mark wanted to run to Tractor Supply so we went to Giddings and had lunch at Whataburger and then hit the store. At this point the shearing day was over but not the farm work day by a long shot. Lots more sweating (90F before we finished shearing) and work followed when home again.

Advertisements
Categories: Bent Oak Farm, Fiber, Gulf Coast Native Sheep | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Too Much Cuteness to Keep on the Farm

So life is pretty nice this spring. But of course, if you can just go outside and see new babies having fun, how can one be down or depressed. Nothing like sweet lamb smiles and hopping, and playing, and nursing, and … to put a smile on your face.

IMG_5109.jpg

Joseph and his very serious face

The boys are growing so fast Samuel is 25 days old today and Joseph is 18 days old. They are both full of life and fun. They spend a lot of time playing together which makes me happy they were born a week apart and have each other as companion. You can’t get too much of those sweet brown faces.

samuel.jpg

Samuel standing tall

They still need their little boy rests and side by side is where you will find them. One would think they were twins. Really, it is only when they need their respective mothers that they are apart. And though they are such fun and a joy. They aren’t alone anymore as the only littles on this farm.

Tuesday morning doing chores I thought that Naomi was acting quite beyond weird. She didn’t run up for their treat (they get a little  each morning and late afternoon but hard to count it as feed as they don’t get a lot). In fact, she stayed by the trees with the two boys. Why did Samuel and Joseph hang out with Naomi? She isn’t either of theirs mother.

After chores I went to check on her and though everyone had moved to the upper pasture, Naomi was laying down by the fence with guess who? Yep, Samuel and Joseph were right there with her. This part of the story still puzzles me as this was not, nor is, the norm.

Then I went out later again to see about her and what greeted me?

Phoebe less hour old.jpg

A brand new baby Phoebe

Naomi had a baby girl in the sand. This was fairly recent as Phoebe’s (took a long time to name her so she was Little One for a day) cord was still wet and somewhat red. Naomi still had placenta hanging out her rear that soon finished coming out so got it taken cared of quickly. But having a baby in a sandy area does present a bit of a problem. Though Phoebe was cleaned up on her head and legs, who wanted to lick all that sand off her back? Not mom. Boy was I wishing I had brought a towel out with me. But who knew.

Now despite a nice very thin girl, Naomi seemed very tired and over-done. I was wishing I had come out just a bit earlier to check on her, as I am assuming the birth wasn’t as easy as the boy’s were. I gave her extra feed which she gobbled down. But still little movement or care.

IMG_5063.jpg

Mommy and daughter enjoying a good lie down

I then remembered about molasses water for new mom’s to help bring back their energy (all the time I spend watching homestead vlogs does come in handy – thanks Rose). Ran in the house and got the molasses and ran back to the barn (now “ran” is the wrong word here as this kid runs for nothing except real emergencies, a good hurry would be a better term) poured a glug into a bucket then ran water in it till it was dissolved and set it by Naomi. She downed the whole thing in no time.

IMG_5086.jpg

In the upper pasture eating and exploring

Having to leave, I texted Mark an hour later asking how all were doing. He said they had gone up to the upper pasture and Naomi was grazing and Phoebe laying nearby. I was so happy at that point. They are both doing well despite how thin Phoebe looked or tired Naomi was. Today most of Phoebe’s sand is worn off. I am giving her some electrolytes to help her along as she needed an extra boost. But all in all, they are wonderful and out having a good day today.

IMG_5083.jpg

Found mom after a short separation

It is a wonder to watch the mother’s and their babies. They can get a bit apart and one or the other will call. Then the other responds, and they call back and forth. Then you can see the joy when they find each other and all is well again with the world. I would love to know the baas as they hear them. Sometimes the mom’s just ignore them and sometimes they immediately jump up and go searching. Same with the babies listening to mom. One day, the boys were ignoring both their mom’s as they played. Then with just one baa from each of the moms, both boys jumped and were across the pasture in a second and at the moms’ side. I wonder if that last baa was the, “If you don’t get your bottom over her this second, you will grounded till you graduate from high school!!!!!”

Categories: Bent Oak Farm, Fiber, Gulf Coast Native Sheep | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Another New Member to the Farm

Ok, so maybe one can have too many baby pictures … nope, I doubt it. Samuel was born mid-day Palm Sunday, and only Mark got to see him brand new. I missed out that Sunday. But the next Sunday, and Resurrection day no less, I got to be the first to meet a new little.

IMG_4797.jpg

Joseph and mama Rachel

I headed out to do my normal morning chores and on Sundays it is generally a quick job in order to get ready and off to church. Alas this morning we were almost late.

I thought I saw something strange in the pasture as Rachel was a little ways out and a hollering. Not normal. But the odd bit was that her legs looked brown. They aren’t. Now just the afternoon before I commented that she looked about to pop. Her udder was full and all looked ready for a baby. Turns out she was, as sometime well before 7am Sunday morning, she gave birth to Joseph.

IMG_4808.jpg

Exploring his brave new world

I hurried out to the pasture and got to meet another little boy. So sweet. Spent a bit of time with him and his mother. All looked very well. His cord was dry, and he was clean and dry. I’m thinking he was born a good bit before. I went hunting for any remnants and found the afterbirth in the sheep shed. The odd bit is that it was partially under the wall. Not sure how Rachel managed that.

IMG_4854.jpg

Joseph with his white spot

Needless to say, if there was a doubt, there is none as to who is his father. Just like Samuel they got their father’s color gene. Although they were darker when born and are fading some now, it is good to see it there. I will say that Joseph, to me, always looks like he is crying as he has that white spot between his right eye and nose. Always makes me think of a tear drop.

IMG_4892.jpg

Following mama around the pasture

Can you imagine finding a new lamb in the pasture on Resurrection morning? The day we celebrate that Christ, The Lamb of God, came to cover all our sins with his shed blood. But that wasn’t all. He was buried and rose again three days and nights later. Triumphing over the grave and death. No more need of the sacrifice of lambs. I must admit, I had a bit of communion with just myself the Lord before heading to get ready for church.

And although I did manage to get there before the service started, I was late enough for Mark to call and see if there was a problem. Then I had to tell everyone. Even those who really didn’t care. Too bad. They got my bubbly joy anyway.

Categories: Bent Oak Farm, Fiber, Gulf Coast Native Sheep | Tags: | Leave a comment

Newest Member of the Farm

So this weekend I went to the Contemporary Handweavers of Texas Art Camp. Had a great time learning about making pine needle baskets and other crafts.

But the best part of the Weekend?

When just getting back in class Sunday afternoon, I heard my phone vibrating and decided to check it. It was Mark wanting to let me know that we had a new lamb. Hannah had probably just birthed a little dark boy just minutes before Mark discovered them. Mark did a video that he sent and then we FaceTimed so I could watch them. No doubt at all who the little feller’s father was. The Herd Ram we bought is a Gulf Coast Native that has the color gene. His legs and head are dark brown but not his wool. Well, Jacob sent more than a little color on to his little offspring that looks to have it all over and even in the little wool he’s born with. Here’s hoping that it doesn’t all fade away.

IMG_4710.jpg

Samuel almost 48 hours old

 

But on the farm, the event started when Mark heard Candy, his horse, having an apoplectic fit out by the fence. He went out to see what the trouble was and there was Hannah and her baby. Must have just been born. As in just been born. After a quick check all seemed well. Candy must have seen what was up and decided someone needed to check in on her sheep. She does watch over them carefully.

IMG_4687.jpg

“My little baby boy. So sweet.”

So what do you name a new little one? When we picked up the twin bottle babies, it became natural that they be named James and John. After that all the sheep were named from the Bible. So if you have a sweet mama who is carefully watching over her baby, and her name is Hannah – it rather is a no-brainer that her little boy should be named Samuel, and Samuel he became.

James was butting poor lil’ Samuel, so Mark moved he and his mother to the backyard. Also we could keep an eye on them and make sure that he was nursing well and she was doing well as a first time mama. Well, it is a plus on both accounts. She keeps such a watch over him, and he keeps a close watch on her. They aren’t ever too far apart. He drinks frequently. Hops all around and checks on what mother is eating. Then there are breaks to just lay down and rest and maybe take a quick nap before trying to find that never ending milk supply. I’ve seen him wet and poop and all seems well.

IMG_4693.jpg

“Mama, who are these people, and why are they taking pictures of me?”

So Palm Sunday we receive a new baby lamb. The day that commemorates the Lamb of God willingly entering Jerusalem knowing that before the week is out he will die on a cross but three days later that glorious morning would come when Mary Magdalene and other women would come to the tomb at sunrise and hear an angel tell them the great news of a Savior who died for all our sins but that death could not hold Him. He had power over death and rose again bringing life to all who believe.

The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto Him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. John 1:29

“He is not here: for He is Risen, as He said.” Matthew 28:6

O death, where is thy sting? O grave where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. BUT thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. I Corinthians 15:55-57

Categories: Bent Oak Farm, Fiber, Gulf Coast Native Sheep | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Keeping My Ears Warm this Winter

So I’m outside at dawn each and every morning (farmers do not get snow days, rain days, weekends, holidays, or even sick days off) This winter has had some right cold mornings for this kid as those temperatures have plummeted to a wind chill of the high teens and 20s some days. Now I can bundle up pretty well, but whatever I did my ears were still cold. What is a girl to do? Well, first be thankful she is a fiber lover and has a stash.

IMG_4417.jpg

A few hours work and dilemma solved.

I remembered one day that I had some alpaca from Starry Knight that I had spun and was just sitting, waiting for the perfect job. I had at last found that perfect place for it. So I gathered up the skeins and then went looking for a headband pattern. Now I crochet and do not knit. And after perusing patterns decided that just thick and basic was the way to go. But being me, of course, I changed it and ended up crocheting a longer first row than the simple pattern suggested. You see, I wanted to be sure that it would cover my ears and do the job at hand. Then it was just a double crochet in the back loop along each row. After going so long, I decided that maybe I had made it too wide after all so then needed to decrease for the area at the back of the neck, at least. Now I may say that I crochet, that doesn’t mean I am a spectacular wonderful crocheter. I do some nice things but all in all I crochet like many things in my life. I call my method “By the Seat of My Pants”. So I didn’t go looking for proper way to decrease and then increase again, but I did my own thing. It all worked in the end and can I say, I haven’t had a single cold ear since. Actually, I have even had a sweaty forehead some mornings before I got back inside.

IMG_4420.jpg

What better way to show it off than with my other morning friend – tea.

So now with these cold mornings, I get a pot of tea going and under a cozy before heading out. When I get back inside I can take off my headband with my warm ears still intact and drink a warming cup of tea and then a second cup and then… Yep, tea is a great friend in this weather as well.

A problem solved without having to go to a store, spend money, and solved in a way that has worked so well. Nothing commercial could be as good. Well, except maybe that hat Mark bought at Housestead Roman Fort on Hadrian’s Wall that day that was so incredibly miserable, rainy, cold, windy, miserable. If anyone knows where it ended up in our move, we’d appreciate you letting us know. That aside, I’m a happy camper.

Categories: Fiber, Spinning | Tags: | 1 Comment

A finished Apron

So last August I was able to attend the Stepping Back Accurately Civil War Era Ladies event in Washington, Arkansas. It was a new adventure for me that I didn’t know what I was getting into. All in all, it went well and the next time I go, I will be better prepared for what is happening.

But to this apron. One of our classes was the making of a Gathering Apron. Now you could take a sewing machine with you and all pertinences but being me, I didn’t want to go to that trouble and my machine is older and decrepit and in our last move was very mistreated by the movers. Wonder it actually still works, but it does. Sort of. Well, more than sort of, but her better days are well behind her.

I began my apron at the meeting by hand stitching the binding on the main panel of the apron. I will have to say that I was pretty pleased with how it came out.

IMG_4329.jpg

Binding to the apron

I even was even more happy with how the join I made with the binding looked. I would say it almost looks sewing machine sewn, but no it was just me.

IMG_4330.jpg

Join on binding

With such an auspicious start, you would think that the journey would have finished rapidly and well. Alas, should I admit that by the time I got home and things in the house, I spent a few months not even knowing where it ended up. Sad to say but true. Well, I did find it and what else I was missing, and finally this week got back to finishing it in the hopes it would help me to get on with another project. So it was time for the pockets.

IMG_4332.jpg

The poor pockets

This I did on the sewing machine. I took the perceived easy route. Well, for most people. That doesn’t mean it is for me. I still think they look like ruffles and the picture upside down, but this is as close as I came to the directions. Which I might add I thought I did pretty well on that point. Well, it would look a lot better if I had gone by what was back in 1860s Texas. You see the sewing machine didn’t make it here till after the war so no apron like this would have been made with one inside of Texas as far as we know. Now just maybe someone in Galveston got one before the war and brought it over from New Orleans, but then the story of Galveston and the war isn’t pretty, and I doubt they were using it at all – if it happened to be there.

But back to my apron. I did get the pocket on but don’t you dare look at the backside. Yes, the bobbin decided to rebel for a moment and though we were working again, I didn’t look at the previous sewing and well it does have those bunches of threads in an area. May cut them out yet and if it falls apart hand sew it back. I must admit though that I like the seams to be hidden and they show quite well. Or maybe not quite well if you aren’t looking for them. This is a bit of business in a plaid to be looking for matching color in thread.

IMG_4359.jpg

The waistband

After doing the quick easy way for the pockets, I decided to go back to the old way for me. There were two options for putting on the ties and waistband that included a major stressed point that one must realize the one way was faster and easier than the other. Well, it didn’t take two seconds to know I was going the slow and easier route for myself. I did use a machine on part of it. I sewed the two pieces together for the center and then folded it wrong side out and sewed up the ties on the two ends. Then turned it right side out and hand stitched the ends closed. Next was pinning it over the top of the waistband and sitting down with Time Team to sew tiny stitches on both sides to get it attached. I didn’t get the gathers all nicely spaced but it did go on and after ironing it again, I believe it doesn’t look half bad and would have looked worse with my sewn seams showing from the machine.

IMG_4357.jpg

The finished apron

So this day, I have finished the apron started last August. It really isn’t too badly done. Well, except for that sewing machine. So just remember that no matter if a project gets lost or well past the time most have theirs done or whatever excuse we can come up with, it is better to go ahead and finish it. Learn while your doing.

And now maybe I’ll get back to my BIG project that scares me.

Categories: Fiber, Sewing | Tags: | 1 Comment

Oh, What a Beautiful Morning

So it was 54F when I went out this morning. Oh such a wonderful feeling as this summer it has often already been in the 80s when I go out. The sun was just coming up and it was crystal clear. I do want to remember this one.

I posted before about a morning in October of last year. A few things have changed since then. The sun wasn’t quite as high yet for pictures and not as far south so it didn’t show as soon. Candy has had a few companions as we have fostered horses. She alas doesn’t care for the constant change so now has a companion that the odds of getting adopted are slim and none. Four of the heifers went to auction and one to freezer camp. Yep, we eat beef almost exclusively for meat here at home now. Mark is loving having a steak anytime he wants one. Lastly, there are now additions to the farm that weren’t here last year. So lets head out.

The temperatures this week have made the tank a sight to enjoy each morning.

IMG_3320.jpg

Early morning at the tank

Once I get what I need from the house the first order is to give the chickens their bit of feed. They will come running when their door opens. Despite the fact they free range all day and eat lots of bugs and plants, they do like their feed as well. So a little bit gets spread about ten birds.

IMG_3321.jpg

I have gone to just throwing their feed on the ground

Then it is head to the barn and give Candy and Poppy their feed. They get a special one each morning and afternoon that helps with growing old (for Poppy). They will be nearby and Candy will holler as soon as she knows I’m close. She does love her feed and will guard and steal what she can. Mark met, a couple weeks ago, the first gal to ever foster Candy back several years. She said she came in with a major food protection attitude. Tells a bit about where she came from and her old situation. We feed them in their new stalls out back of the barn. The gates stay open unless Candy is being testy and then the gates close till they are done. Candy did well today except that when I went to muck out Poppy’s side (why do they poop in there? They have a few acres to spread the wealth.) Both horses were in there together. Not the best situation for me to enter.

IMG_3323.jpg

Enjoying Breakfast. Candy on the left. Poppy the right.

Now the sheep were already grazing halfway up the rise to the upper paddock. That didn’t keep them from knowing I was about and down they came running. They love their alfalfa. We had an health issue with them. Not serious to most, but as you can see, Ruth was the one that had to make a vet visit. She even ended up overnight at the vet’s who thought she would probably be dead in the morning. Alas, they didn’t know what good blood she did have in her. She surprised them by morning and has been getting back on top of life ever since. Alas, if you have a sheep with ulcers over both eyes (part of her trouble), do you think it is easy to catch her now that she is feeling back on top of life and put cream in her eyes? Think again. Easy at first when she was slow and not able to see well. But I dare you to try and catch her now. She can even keep quite the vigilance while eating and can see the wires of the fence so doesn’t run into it any more. But, back to the flock, they do get alfalfa each day to help build them up more, and at this point they would probably kill for their alfalfa. So here they are waiting for mom to finish with the horses and get on to more important beings to feed.

IMG_3324.jpg

Tabby also waiting with her charges. Yes, Ruth is there looking worse for wear but doing quite well. The camelid look is compliments of loosing wool but still having a bunch on her rear.

Tabby took on a new roll this morning that mom likes. She didn’t allow chickens to come near the sheep or her feeding areas. No chickens allowed to share the wealth. I have shooed chickens away (they really like alfalfa and have been giving Tabby’s food a try as well. Omnivores they are.) But I doubt too many of them will challenge her as they do me. A flurry of feathers as they skedaddle through the fence to make a try for horse droppings instead. Hopefully soon, Mark is going to make a feed trough to make this chore a bit better for all concerned.

IMG_3325.jpg

Yummy! Scoop is on ground as I tried to catch Ruth, but no one’s sticking their finger in her eyes today if she can help it. I didn’t press the issue. Try again later.

Next Tabby has been waiting ever so patiently. She gets a bit of meat to go with her dog food each morning. Food is a great friend. She does go under the gate and visit the tank, so hence the dirty feet.

IMG_3326.jpg

Am I next?

I will have to admit to taking several sheep pictures at this point. Who wouldn’t but then I headed to the upper paddock and loved the view. The moon has been lovely the last few early mornings when getting Mark out the door. By this time it was sitting above the trees with the sun shining brightly on all. But then it was time to head over to the chicken coop and see about it. Fun! One of the Barred Rocks just laid an egg. Still warm. So took it in for breakfast. If you haven’t had an egg fried very over easy that is less than hours old. You haven’t lived. The yolk is ever so creamy. As in creamy goodness. As in never had anything like it before with an egg goodness. Nothing like the old things you get in the grocery store.

IMG_3347.jpg

Gift in the nesting box. Thank you!

So after going inside and feeding the dogs there, they always have to wait ever so patiently on everyone else to get fed first; it is my turn (I might add that I often have first breakfast and second breakfast in the mornings. This was actually second breakfast for me today.) That new fresh egg went in the skillet and oh was it good.

IMG_3350.jpg

Cook it on the bottom well and then flip to just harden up the whites on top a few seconds, and you will have creamy yolk heaven.

Now one must move on to other things. But what a way to start the day.

Categories: Bent Oak Farm, Fiber, Gulf Coast Native Sheep | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Lena’s Off the Loom

I finally have cut the material for the dress off the loom. Now, I will admit I was hoping for at least another foot woven, but alas and alack, this warp just decided to give up the ghost, and die on me, and I decided not to fight it any more let it rest in peace.

IMG_4478

Solution to increasingly bad tension

I had two inches of warp that decided all of a sudden that tension was for the birds and seemed to just totally loose it. So I tried many things before suddenly grabbing spools and tucking them under. Alas, I needed a bit more height and they wouldn’t stay stacked. so a bit of cloth wrapped around kept everyone where I wanted them and it worked. The far right was a minimal tension problem that got taken care of at the same time.

IMG_4477

Broken warp with the end in sight

So all was going well for, oh, how about two inches. Then I noticed a broken warp thread. In a pattern like this you just can’t throw it out and say, I will pretend I never noticed and pretend it never happened. So do I consider it done? The end is so close. Or try and fix it? I tried and fixed it, only to discover that there were two broken threads. So we fixed both – or should I say, I thought I fixed both. I went back to weaving. Wound a bit more blue on the bobbin and wove a bit more only to realize that the new warp threads weren’t being caught by the weft threads. I swear they came through perfectly. They should be exactly as they should. Oh well, so much for confidence. Obviously they weren’t right so what to do now?

IMG_4515

Cut off the loom

I finished off both shuttles which ran out at the same time and considered it done. The on loom length came to just four inches shy of 11 yards. Cry. I would have loved to have made those last four inches at least. But no more fighting this warp. So it is cut off and on the table downstairs now. I am going to be spending a bit of time now going over it to find what I can fix in problems. There are many that need a needle to help out. Despite my best efforts at wanting a perfect piece of cloth, that didn’t happen here and probably never will.

So for this project we are a step closer to the end. Albeit that end is still far in the distance.

Categories: Fiber, Weaving | Tags: , | Leave a comment

A Pretty Scarf

I did finally finish a scarf I started not too long ago. You see, my mother had a friend who gave her some spools of yarn. Yep, the kind fiber people like but what on earth was she going to do with them? So she held on till I visited her and gave them to me.

Now I loved the colors in this one and thought I would just play with it on my Zoom Loom and so started making a square. Not the easiest as this yarn (Which has a fancy name for its style, but not being one to use these types I don’t remember what it is.) has little loops off the sides of it which just are begging to get in the way. But then to compound that, I decided to weave them together into a scarf. I had played with this idea before, and have posts on it, but have never made an official good enough to use project with the method. So besides the little loops getting in the way, I was also trying to catch the loops of one while weaving the next. I can just be a glutton for punishment.

IMG_4354.JPG

The finished scarf

In the midst of creating, I needed a handmade gift for a friend, so decided that is what I needed to get me to finish it.  So I got a few more squares added and then promptly forgot to take it to give away. YIKES! How me is that? So, back home I added a another square (couldn’t decide how long to make it) and then sent it in the mail.

I will admit it is far from perfect as it was hard to keep tract of what was where. But in the end I loved the colors which are much more jewel-toned that show here on my computer. I did add a single crochet edging around it to help hold it all together so that it didn’t get pulled out of place somewhere. You can ask me how I know it can get pulled out of place?

scarf 2.JPG

Three squares joined with crochet edge

Categories: Fiber, Weaving | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

A Tale of Two Towns

So this last week I have been between two towns that their names come from back east and from much more famous places. First lets look at the trip I took.

IMG_4437

Washington, Arkansas

Last week I went to Washington, Arkansas for the Stepping Back Accurately Women’s American Civil War re-enactors meeting. It was an interesting time to learn more about how people lived and dressed in the 1860s. And to meet ladies just as crazy as I am. It was held in an old 1914 School House that is in Washington. A town that time bypassed when they didn’t want the railroad, but it didn’t totally die either. It did, however, survive with many old houses and buildings and is now a state park as an historical town.

What would I find so interesting there? Of course ,many things, and I would love to go back and see more of the town. But one morning Peggy and I skipped the meeting and went on a tour. Our first stop was the Trimble house and after telling the docent we were with the group at the school and lovers of history; and that I was a weaver and Peggy a seamstress for the Alamo, he said he thought he could trust us and we got to leave the red runner and walk over to things to get a close up look. So what does a weaver spot ever so quickly? Three wonderful overshot coverlets.

IMG_4384

First coverlet

The first one I didn’t get a good shot of just it as it had a dress laying on it. But here it is in such beautiful perfection. I must admit to drooling over it. But on to another room.

IMG_4386

Second coverlet

Oh,  this one was a dream. It was wool and linen and woven in three panels which were sewn together. It was incredibly wonderful despite the fact that the panels didn’t all line up perfectly. The actual weaving was something to behold. I did actually get to touch this one quickly. The docent folded it just a bit back so we could see the back and then told me, I could lay it back right. What a pleasure! I probably took more care and less touch than most of the docents in getting to touch this gem. It so spoke to me in my language. It was quite stiff and rough to the touch. I would assume it is the drying out of the linen over so much time but maybe I’m wrong, and it is just the age and wool and linen get rough with it.

IMG_4387

Closeup where it does line up pretty well.

Then one more coverlet came into view in a cabinet. It was an eye catcher as the colors weren’t just the natural and green and blue that the other two were but was in a red/brown and rust.

IMG_4388

Third coverlet

This quilt though quite common in pattern (if I was near my books, I could look it up quickly, but I haven’t learned the pattern names though I can recognize so many and think I should know their names) to me was quite unusual in these colors. I just wished it wasn’t in the cabinet so I could get a better picture.

So had a great time in Washington, but was soon back in good Lexington. So what is happening here? Yes, I’m still weaving away on my Lena dress fabric. I have officially today crossed the 8 yard mark and have 4 more to go. Yippy! Two thirds of the way done. I do have several things that do keep it at a slower pace than it would be. Not the least being that the brake release has frayed, and so I have to get up and do both the front and back brakes separately. Must go to Ace and see if they would have what I need. Also, still dealing with some of those cantankerous warp threads but all in all it is going along and looking pretty good except for my left hand selvedge. Hard to accept that the handed side you are is the worse one. The right looks quite nice.

IMG_3225

8 yards headed on the cloth beam

I am happy to be this far along, albeit, I had hoped to have it all woven before Washington but, alas and alack, what can I say, it didn’t happen. But it is moving along.

IMG_3228

The big fat sections are loosing their girth.

So, I got to see some wonderful coverlets that make you wonder who wove them and their personal stories. And I have made more progress on my own weaving, albeit, not an overshot at this time, but I feel one coming on soon.

I tend to love those two shuttle patterns best. So now I am doing Color and Weave which I love and next it probably will be an overshot.

Categories: Fiber, Weaving | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.