New Client…New Location

Last friday was my last day with my former client, this past Monday, I started up with my new client.

Northeast For The Winter Again
It appears that I can’t escape the Northeast during Winter anymore. I’ll be in Massachusetts for the majority of my time with this new client, and the project is slated to last until April of next year (much shorter than the 3 and a half years with my prior client).

I miss my last client a lot, but after ten years in this kind of work, I get used to dealing with the sadness of saying goodbye to a client and the stress of establishing myself with a new client. My former client sent me this wonderful package on my last day.

It was a tower of goodies from Mrs. Fields, and while I’ve eaten a few already, here’s what it looked like before nibbling.

Current Knitting
Now that I’m back travelling, I’ve also started back up on the Celestine Shawl (no more weaving distractions). But I haven’t made a lot of progress since the last picture. I’ll see what I can do towards the end of the week to keep you updated.

I did however get distracted by something else than a loom. My friend Kathy had a hat design published in Interweave Crochet that used crochet’s version of Fair Isle stranding. I had to try the method, so I made myself crochet’s version of the London Beanie.

I did

I enjoyed the process of covering over the color not being used.

Readers’ Comments/Questions
Regarding the new bargain loom and my first attempt at weaving, Michelle asks, “How much would a loom, similar to or the same as the one you have, cost new? I think your woven fabric is beautiful, how long did it take to make?

I really have no idea what this kind of loom would cost. I can’t imagine it would be quite as expensive as the ones mentioned by May. It’s a relatively cheaply made item, although it allowed me to play with some of the basics of weaving. It took me about four hours in total to warp the loom and weave the small piece I showed in the picture. The chunky yarn helped make the weaving go extremely quickly.

JoVE asks if I would be “…willing to share your warping instructions (and any others the loom came with).”

I’d be glad to try and scan them and e-mail them when I get back home at the end of the week. The basic instructions in case you want to experiment, are to tie a loop of string around the center hooks on the front and back of the loom. Before tying a knot at the front, thread one side of the loop through the eye of the heddle and one through slat next to the loop. This will allow you to have an “up shed” and a “down shed” position by pushing the eye-threaded sides of the loop down or up while allowing the slat-threaded side of the loop to stay in the same position.

Regarding the weaving, Liza (of quilting fame) asks, “What fibers did you use?”

For the warp, I just used an old cone of some 2/20 wool/acrylic blend. For the weft, I used a very bulky, uneven wool yarn that I got in a yarn swap with crocheter friend Kathy. She got her yarn from Thistle Hill Farm. I had tried to make multiple projects with the yarn, and nothing looked good enough to keep working on.

Marilyn states, “Well, let me quote: ‘I’m not going to weave'”

My cable network has a station that sometimes show extended tours with various historic places. There is an old weaving factory in Red Lion, PA that was featured on the show, and they showed the owner weaving on some of the most complex and interesting looms I’ve ever seen. While I was quite amazed, and I would someday like to take a real tour of the factory, the complexity of their weaving was so daunting, I gave the quote that Marilyn notes. But even Marilyn will admit there is a huge difference between a rigid heddle loom and an eight-shaft. The warping alone would take me as much time as it would take me to knit a sweater for Thaddeus.

I almost consider the little bit of weaving I did to be about as simple as the much-aligned Weavettes.

Finally, Mary-Helen of Witty Knitter fame send an e-mail with a link to a video interview of her, discussing knit blogs. Nice to put voice to her face.

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