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1  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Completed Projects / Tour de Fleece 2016 - Week 1 on: July 10, 2016 02:39:32 PM
Whoop! Spinning along with the cyclists in the Tour de France is wonderful inspiration to actually sit and spin quantities of yarn!

First- a 3 ply merino (I don't know the stats, as I haven't washed it.)

Second yarn I finished this week is a Coopworth Corriedale blend with Pulled sari silk for texture.

I'm plying another today, and hope to finish a fourth before the end of the week!
2  FIBER ARTS / Dyeing: Completed Projects / Shibori style dyed felt scarves on: June 11, 2016 03:33:42 AM

So, I use the term shibori loosely since I don't know if these are exactly folded with proper shibori techniques... But they are folded and then dyed, and then I finish the felting.  I start with pre felt fabric, often merino silk blend.

Here they are folded and stitched or tied in place:

And here are the finished scarves!

Thanks for looking!
3  FIBER ARTS / Felting: Completed Projects / Simple wet felted scarves on: June 11, 2016 03:24:45 AM
These things are so easy to whip up!  And it's almost like cheating, since all I do is spread out a multi coloured top, muss up the one side a bit, just to give them some firmness, and felt away!

thanks for having a look!
4  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Memory Pillows on: June 11, 2016 03:13:54 AM
My Grandpa passed away 3 years ago in April.  Cry  My Grandma had given us each a shirt of his to do as we wished with, and for 3 years mine hung in the closest, among my husbands shirts.  Just hiding, not being  seen.... I had seen those memory pillows and quilts and thought it would be much nicer to have his shirt out on display, where I could see it everyday.  My sister came up to visit me this April, and she brought her shirt with her, and we made ourselves the pillows.

(I sat in this chair after I took the pictures, and wept a little... It was like sitting on his lap again, at least in my mind...)

This one is mine.  The back is actually well faded... Grandpa loved to fish, so I think he maybe spent a lot of time in his boat in this one.

This one is my sisters (she sewed it herself! and she's not even crafty! lol I talked her through it though Smiley )

Anyway, sorry for the sappy story... I just hope someone who hasn't seen this concept yet does, and thinks it's a great idea Smiley  I love my Grandpa Pillow.
5  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Completed Projects / So much yarn.. on: June 11, 2016 03:02:22 AM
It's like, 4 am, and I can't sleep thanks to choosing the wrong cold meds before bed... So, what better thing to do than cruise craftster, and post something?  I can't believe it's been what feels like forever since I've posted...

Okay, so first, this gorgeous oatmeal BFL, I haven't actually measured it out, but I know it's got to be over 600yards, because it was 4 bobbins worth of singles. maybe a light sport weight?

This is a 50/50 blend of merino and baby llama! I took a series of progress pics, because I was really enjoying the process of this spin...

That's it for now. There's more, but I guess they've not been loaded onto my computer...

Thanks for looking!
6  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / Wood Stove with tile hearth on: January 01, 2016 04:31:59 PM
In the fall, before the snow flew, my husband and I embarked on our first ever tiling project.  He's a Plumbing and Heating Journeyman, so the putting in of the wood stove was old hat, but not the tiling!
He did the majority of the work; the parts with the tile saw, and glue; I did the grouting.  The grouting was a nightmare!  The grout was old stock, and actually discontinued, so when I ran out after 3/4 of the tile had been grouted I died a little inside.... Thankfully there was a similar product by the same company in the color, and given I was only the left facing part unfinished, it didn't really matter, since you always get some difference wall to wall anyway.  I'm glad you can't even tell.

These circle tiles, while on sheets, were terrible to grout. some of the grout stuck to some of the tile, it sank a lot when it dried, so nothing is flush. It's a good thing we have a good vacuum.

The wall tile was much easier to grout. Washed right off. Aside from the previously mentioned curveball, it went well!

Here's the finished pic, before the first fire..

And one with a fire a blazing!

It's really nice to have, considering we are sometimes without power, and therefore without heat. We've been using it anyway, since wood fires at christmas and new years are cozy Smiley

Thanks for looking!

ha! the flipped pics look super stretched to me!  I have no idea why it did that!  Th bottom picture is the right proportions...
7  FIBER ARTS / Felting: Completed Projects / Christmas ornaments on: December 02, 2015 04:52:56 PM
Here are just a couple I've done so far.  I'm working on a few more too.  A tree and a tree in the snow and a reindeer (that looks like a bear right now...)  I've sewn ribbons on the back for hanging too!

8  FIBER ARTS / Felting: Completed Projects / Reversible wet felted wall hanging - 5-4-3-2-1 on: October 26, 2015 09:15:07 PM
This is my most recent piece of art!  Wet felted with resists to create the almost-holes, then machine stitched to add texture.  I created it with it being reversible in mind, and i'm so happy with how it turned out.  It's going to a Gala for a fundraiser for a cause near and dear to me.  I hope it fetches a good sum for them!

I entitled the price 5-4-3-2-1, because each of those numbers is represented in this piece. 3 groupings of 5 on the dark side (although one is cut off... in hind site I should have moved all the resists down an inch or so)  3 groupings of 4 on the blue side, 2 sides making 1 beautiful whole.

The individual pics of each, hopefully so you can see it better...

And lastly, a few gratuitous macro-esque shots (off colour, due to lighting and angle... but pretty in their own right!)

Thanks for looking!
9  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Completed Projects / Belladunes Spinzilla 2015 thread on: October 06, 2015 10:15:06 PM
So, I'm amazingly crazily busy filling bobbins this week!! I don't think I've spun quite this much all year... at least, not in full skeins...  So I thought I'd start a thread for progress this week!  Is anyone else spinning for Spinzilla?

This is my "what I plan to spin" picture.  I've already strayed bit from it, because I wanted to spin the ply for the single batt to the left...

This is day 1's progress... Maybe 5 ounces? It's a start anyway!

And day 2. I finished filling bobbin 1of 2 of the linen wool blend. I'll probably spin the rest tomorrow!

Anyway, I have copious amounts of bobbins, so I won't be plying right away, but probably by Friday.

If anyone else is spinning for spinzilla, let's see those yarns!!

10  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Learn to Spin - Lesson 6 - Yarn design on: September 16, 2015 12:52:36 PM
Wow! Yarn Design! That encompasses quite a few topics!  I'll start with the most important aspect of yarn design: Your fibre choice and preparation!

Fibre choice:
Everyone loves some next to skin soft merino wool.  But did you know that not all wool is created equal, and not all yarn needs to be next to skin soft? Next to skin soft yarn does not wear as well as a coarser, less crimpy fibre.  Wensleydale and Lincoln wool make wonderful rugs.  So, with that in mind, what is the end use of your yarn? Toque and mitts? Well, you'll want that lovely merino or even BFL (Blue Faced Leicester).  Heck, you don't even necessarily need to spin wool. There's Alpaca, cotton, bamboo, and silk, just to name a few.

Fibre Prep:

There are many preparations available to hand spinners today.  Commercially processed types include, but are not limited to: Roving, Sliver, and Top.

Roving(semi woollen preparation) is created from carding, and pulling the fibres into a long, rope like package. Fibres are not aligned at all, and there is a slight twist in the rope. There is a lot of air in this fluffy preparation.
Sliver (semi worsted preparation) is an intermediary step from roving to top.  The fibres are more aligned, but not of similar lengths. They are often smaller in diameter and not as dense as combed top.
Top (worsted preparation) is a  combed preparation that leaves almost only all the longest fibres, and it leaves them in parallel alignment.  This is the most dense form of commercial prep.

There are also many hand prepared options as well. They include, but are not limited to: hand carded rolags, batts,  hand pulled rovings, and hand combed top.

Hand carded rolags (woollen preparation) are made on hand cards. The fibre is out of alignment as much as it possibly can be.

Batts (semi woollen preparation) are fluffy sheets of fibres, often blends of different fibres, that have been prepared on a home sized drum carder. The fibres are not aligned. There are many, many ways to spin a batt. Truth be told however you spin it works perfectly. It'll make yarn if you put twist into it and draft it out.

Hand pulled rovings (semi worsted preparation) are generally made with a hackle. the fibres can be more aligned then not.

Hand combed tops(worsted preparation) are less dense then commercially preped tops.  They are, however, similar to the commercially preped tops in that all the short fibres are removed and fibres are aligned. 

Adding twist can be done in a few different ways, and it directly affects the type of yarn you end up with.  There is an infinite spectrum of Worsted to Woollen yarns. Lets explore the most worsted and most woollen types of yarns.

True Worsted yarns by definition are worsted spun from hand combed top. Let's explore what exactly worsted spinning is.  When you are drafting your fibre out to allow twist in, you create something of a triangle shape. In worsted spinning, you do not allow the twist to travel past where you are pinching off and pulling out the fibres.  You smooth the fibres down, squeezing any air out of the resulting make of yarn.  This produces a dense, heard wearing, and smooth yarn.

True Woollen yarns are spun from hand carded rolags. Woollen spinning is the opposite of worsted spinning in that you allow the fibre into your drafting triangle, and you do not pinch out the air.  The air and the misaligned fibres are what give woollen spun yarns their characteristic fluffy and fuzzy nature. Woollen yarns are also a lot warmer then worsted yarns.

The in betweens are any mix up of prep type and spinning style. Spin a worsted preparation with a woollen draft, and you will get a lighter, less dense but still durable yarn.  Spin a woollen preparation with a worsted draft and you'll still get some of the fuzziness, but your yarn will be dense.

With the basics covered, some more exciting ways of sprucing up your yarns involve plying with thread, adding beads, plying at different angles, core spinning, coiling...  plying an over plied yarn on itself gives you a cabled yarn. Add bits of fluff or fabric between your plies.

And then there's colour! Play with colour combinations. Spin one colour after the other, and ply that singles with a solid coloured singles.  What about wrapping one color of fibre around a singles to make clouds?

The possibilities really are endless! So go forth, create yarns! It doesn't matter how you do it, so long as you are putting twist into fibre, you are making yarn!

Lesson 1 : Source your tools
Lesson 2 : Drafting
Lesson 3 : Spinning
Lesson 4 : Plying
Lesson 5 : Skeining and setting the twist
Lesson 6 : Yarn design[url]
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