Spinning Guild Meeting
Saturday (5/17/08) was our monthly spinning guild meeting. Summer is the beginning of our light attendance part of the year. We sit out of doors in a really beautiful space, under a very large oak tree. Several people were at a planning meeting for the 2010 (CNCH) Northern California Handweavers convention and several people in our guild were at a planning meeting on Saturday.
Stash Enhancement Opportunity (like I needed more stash!)
A lady brought about 10-15 large boxes of stash that she needed to get out of her house. She has been spinning, weaving, knitting, etc. for many years and has put an appropriate amount of time, money and effort into creating this very large stash. She had another 10-15 boxes at home still and had left an equal amount to all this back in England 25 years ago. Just walked off and left it. I just can't imagine what that would have been like. I believe she sold it like a fire sale. Anyway, I walked away with about 5 pounds of incredibly lovely 80's merino/silk top, 5 balls of some really wonderful black yarn with shiny specs in it, 1 very large skein of white yarn that still had a tag of $58 on it and about a pound or more of bombyx silk top, all for $80. I also came home with a large number of cones of free yarn that one of our guild members, Frank, gave me. A lady he knew who was getting rid of her stash, gave it to him, and he thought of us since Frank knew we had this very large loom which is going to eat yarn like crazy!
Weavebird - 5/18/08
Sunday we worked on the new Weavebird loom. We did some testing of it and it wasn't pulling up all the shafts. So I sat at the loom while Jim was upside down looking at what was happening underneath it. Eventually he determined that the cables needed tensioning and that seemed to fix it. That stuff took several hours. Eventually he determined that it seemed to be working correctly and we could finally wind a warp. Hallelujah! However, by the time we picked a 32 shaft pattern, and the yarn, and determined what size the initial warp would be, the day was just about shot. After 1/2 the warp was wound, we decided to give it up for the day. We were hot and tired and we weren't going to get the rest of the warp done anyway so we had some dinner, watched a movie and then went to bed. It was quite a successful day at the loom and it sounds like way now.
Oh, I forgot, we also spent a couple of hours putting on the finishing parts on the loom. Jim had to string rope through the eyes on the front of the loom apron and put a metal rod in it. Then we had to put the sectional extensions on the warping beam on the back, it took both of us quite some time to put these parts on. I forgot to take a picture of this procedure.
Oh, another thing that took quite a bit of time. I have been pondering and puzzling at how we are going to manage warping 32 shafts. I have spoke to some expert weavers who have 24 shafts and they told me their methods which helped my thinking alot. However, in the end, what we did was to make tabs, very much like folder tabs that stick up in a drawer, to mark each one of the 32 shafts. The tabs stick up about 2" above the shafts so that when we were testing the patterns to make sure all the shafts came up when called, that we could see easily which shafts were coming up. The shafts are engraved with a discrete little number on the right side of the top of the shaft but when they are coming up, you can really only see the number on the first shaft. I'll take a picture of what the tabs look like later.
Well, that was my weekend and it really went very fast. Plus it has been hot hot hot this week here in San Jose, California. We have had maybe 2 weeks of scorching 90 - 100 degree heat starting about one week into May. Weird heatwave. Much too early for this kind of heat. We usually don't get this kind of heat until late July and August. Global warming?