Monday, July 11, 2016

Taking time to pause

There is a spot on my kitchen table, where the vase sits. I fill the vase each week, with flowers from my garden. For the past few weeks, the vase has been filled with roses. Yesterday, when I went out to cut flowers for the week, there were no more roses to fill the vase with. I was reminded of the quote about taking time to smell the roses, because however trite that quote may be, there is truth to it.

We are at that time. That time, that we should pause and notice the time. Hal Borland said it this way:

"We are at the time of the longest daylight, earliest sunrise and latest sunset, which will continue with only a few seconds of change for another week. Time, if we would only pause and let it flow over us, for a little while partakes of the deliberation that is the mark of summer in almost everything except human affairs."

"The berries ripen in their own time. The bees replenish the hive. Clover comes to sweet blossom, then to seed. Daisies whiten the roadsides."

"Fireflies sparkle in the evenings. Time flows like the brooks that must have leisured through Eden when summer blessed a young and innocent Earth."

And so I notice that the roses in my vase have been replaced with black-eyed susans, and hollyhocks, purple coneflowers, and monarda. Time flows on.

Some of my hours have been filled with making a couple of distaves for a friend.

I wove the bands for distaves on the double hole tapeloom.

I modified an old rigid heddle frame and it worked out well for those times that I don't wish to use a band lock. The pattern for the bands came from the book about Norwegian Band Weaving.

Wednesday, April 06, 2016


Another example of in-hand spindle spinning without having to use a half-hitch at the top of the spindle. This is how I've been spinning these days.
When spinning off the point, it isn't necessary to make a half-hitch at the beginning and end of each make.
I take joy in noticing the amount of fiber on the distaves. Oh those optimistic Romanians!

The video has another example of in-hand spinning, near the end. I've not attempted to try my hands at this method, something more to learn.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

making more

Tying on to the previous warp, I wove a few more small towels with the Gebrochene Twill draft.

I changed the weft color three times.

There is still hemming to be done before they are completely finished. These are 100% cotton and should be nice and absorbent. Hemming and hawing with the idea of winding one more warp with my handspun linen, and weaving the weft with the handspun hemp in the same twill pattern. We'll see.

The wood-thrush and the eastern phoebe have arrived, with the snow buntings still hanging around. Outside, there have been repairs being made to the "grow house". Inside, seeds are germinating. And the seasons turn again.

"I have said that there was great pleasure in watching the ways in which different plants come through the ground, and February and March are the months in which that can best be seen."
- Henry N. Ellacombe

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Broken Twill

I've been working on weaving Gebrochene (translated from German to mean "broken") Twill.

Present day weavers may recognize this as M's and W's. This draft was available to me from the book, "The Best of Weavers- Twill Thrills"- on loan from my friend, Judy. (thanks! Judy).

I wove this cloth on a 4 shaft loom. There were 275 ends of cotton - KnitPicks Curio - from my friend Brigitte (thanks! Brigitte).

The weave structure has a long and interesting history (some similar examples dating to circa 1500s). The complex draft requires breaks and reversals--lots of patience for dressing the loom, but the results when weaving are very satisfying! Tromp as Writ! I had help figuring out the drawdown from my friends Greta and Elaine (thanks! Greta--thanks! Elaine).

As you can see, it was a group effort..and I'm grateful for all of the help!
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