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1  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / spinning with odd spindles/charkas/wheels on: July 21, 2008 02:00:17 PM
My local spinning meet-up group met in the park recently (Madison Park in Madison Square which has a garden but is not Madison Square Garden.)

One spinner had previously shown the group that she was spinning with two sticks and a rock. Another spinner made a spindle with polymer clay and a third was able to make a lighter weight cd spindle by using "business card" cd's.

This inspired me and I tried out spinning on a paint roller, (video below.) It is more like a charka than a spindle. I think it needs to turn better and a few people suggested I weight it. I can use toilet paper rolls as bobbins (very convenient) and remove the bobbin after spinning or plying. If you haven't used the toilet paper tube as a bobbin for your spinning, try it. The cardboard seems to grab the yarn a tiny bit so that it holds very well. I don't end up with snarls like I do on a smaller diameter tube. I also am going to try to place a hook to guide the yarn on the endcap of the roller. The spinning I'm working with in the video is messy, since I was using the same bobbin for two or three small bits of whatever washed up.


So my challenge to all of you, what is the oddest thing you can use to spin?

Has anyone actually used a pencil stuck through a potato?
2  FIBER ARTS / Weaving: Discussion and Questions / warping day on: July 20, 2008 09:29:57 AM
Has anyone else managed to get blisters while warping? What on earth did I do that would give me a blister? The blisters are on the side of my pinky (only on the left hand - I am right handed.) I think they are from tensioning.
I also managed to pull through some of my warp strands. I would think "oh, they are not strong enough" but I've used this type of tencel for most of the projects I have made.
Maybe I saw "the Hulk" one-too-many-times? (That would be once.) I feel like Bullwinkle should say "sometimes she doesn't know her own strength"
Now here's something I hope you really enjoy -
OK I don't actually have anything.
Is anyone else weaving right now? What do you have on your loom?
I'm planning a quick and easy scarf or two before the oloompics. My last two projects were so fussy, I haven't touched the loom for a month. Plain weave here I come. (Except I just got the Betty Davenport book about surface texture on a rigid-heddle. It's a new edition with lots of pictures and diagrams. Maybe I should try floats and ....)
3  FIBER ARTS / Weaving: Completed Projects / Twill with a rigid heddle on: June 16, 2008 09:29:07 AM
I'm going to try to post my most recent finished weaving. The class assignment is "Two Related Pieces" - but we learned a twill method and we experimented with non-traditional materials.

I use a Kromski Harp Rigid-Heddle loom. This was done with the 8-dent heddle. I used linen as a warp, but I warped three threads/slot and one per hole (16 dent).
I inserted crayons and melted them to keep them from sliding out the side.  I also melted crayon into my plain-weave linen. This seems like something I will do again with a particular picture/pattern in mind. The linen was hard to manage - I have never used it before.
The twill is done by taking the three slotted threads and arranging them on extra pick-up sticks/strings attached to a dowel. It took weeks for me to thread correctly. I kept putting the loom away and working on something simpler. The linen all looked exactly the same, keeping track of the position of the threads was making me dizzy. Now I am super-proud. Ha, I don't need a four-harness loom, I can do this again if I want to. (Rigid Heddle are cheaper and mine folds up to keep it out of the way of the cats.)
I did not immediately like the idea of non-traditional materials for weaving - I was in class to learn the traditional methods not goofing off. However, once I started I loved mixing up what I wove. I have two tape measures woven with chenille to stabilize the cloth (which I already gave away) and colored pencils with homespun and chenille (post soon.)

I started weaving in January and have loved it.
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