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1  FIBER ARTS / Weaving: Completed Projects / From handspun to FO - My crazy Swedish flag scarf on: July 18, 2008 01:35:24 PM
Hello all!  So I've started a four-shaft weaving class at my fantastico LYS.  One of my first assignments on my rented Schacht table loom was a plainweave project, though we were instructed to be "creative with color". 

So I randomly decided I wanted to use handspun for this project that was due in a week.  EEeep!  I had no idea at the time how much work it is to spin for AND weave a project in just a week's time.

I took some superwash merino roving in what I thought were weirdo colors that might not go together super-wonderfully and spun up 200+ yards for the 3-yard warp:

Each color is just plied on itself, no big woo...but I thought the colors might work up interestingly. 

Then I measured the warp on my warping board...


...and warped the loom.  I ran out of yarn so I spun up another 200+ yards for the weft.  At this point I was completely exhaustified.   But determined!   Cheesy  I started weaving with the slightly chunkier weft.  It was such a gorgeous day that I hauled my loom outside to weave on the picnic table...


I threw stripes of colors in at random, just to see what would happen.  What happened was plaid, of course! 


I was so proud when I took the scarf off the loom that I paraded it over to my neighbor, Chad.

"Looks great, Nicole," he said.  "Guess you're a Swedish soccer fan!"  Cheesy Cheesy
2  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Help! My new Kiwi is falling apart! :( on: September 05, 2007 08:29:58 AM
Hey everybody,

So about a month and a half ago I bought a Kiwi wheel from the Renaissance Fest here in Colorado.  It's seen some pretty heavy use since then (just about every day), and now I'm starting to have some problems.

Numero 1:  The plastic brake band broke about 3 days ago.  This was pretty odd...it actually wore down enough to have significant weak spots, and consequently snapped while I was using it.  Luckily there was enough extra twine already wound onto the springs, so I just removed the broken short end, unwound the extra, and reattached everything.  No problemo.  Plus, this stuff looks like heavy fishing twine, so if it breaks again, I think I can replace it.  Anyone else have this problem, and if so, what did you use to replace your brake band?

Numero 2:  The plastic bit that joins the left treadle to the footman snapped off yesterday.  Examining it, it looks like the plastic bit was held in the treadle by a screw, which perhaps weakened the plastic bit over time?  I guess yesterday it finally snapped in two.  My problem is that I don't know where to get a replacement plastic bit...I don't even know what it's actually called.  Anyone?  I'll probably end up writing to Ashford and possibly the guy that sold me the wheel.  The assembly directions on the Ashford site specify that you should coat the screws with candle wax before screwing them into the plastic bits, and since I bought the wheel already assembled, I'm not sure if this was done.  Do you think that skipping this step would cause the plastic bits to break?

Anyway, sorry for the long post.  I'm just disappointed that it's only been a little over a month and my Kiwi is already breaking down!  Grr.  Angry

**UPDATE**
I figured out that the plastic bit I didn't know the name of is called a conrod joint.  My Kiwi uses the flexible conrad joints rather than the leather ones, and I just found a couple of places online where replacement parts can be ordered.  Here's one, in case anyone else has this problem: 
http://www.mielkesfarm.com/ashford/ash_accessories.htm#parts

Learning something new every day!  Can you tell I'm a new wheel-owner?   Wink
3  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Renaissance Fest + Lots of Beer = New Wheel!! on: August 01, 2007 09:52:42 AM
I have been so slammed at work that I haven't gotten a chance to post about this, but I am the proud new owner of an Ashford Kiwi!

This past weekend was the last hurrah for the Colorado Ren Fest for this year.  A few friends, my boy, and I all went down to Larkspur on Sunday, the last day of the festival, and had a merry old(e) time.  After a couple of hours and a couple of beers, my friend Rea spotted the spinning booth.  The guy there was incredibly helpful and sat me down to give me a brief lesson on the wheel, which turned into 40 minutes of me not leaving.   Wink

It was my first time ever trying to spin on a wheel, and I felt a deep joy unwinding in my soul.  Seriously, you all know!  It is just the best feeling. 

Spinning Dude offered the wheel to me for a deep discount since it had "the dust of the festival" on it (they'd used it to demonstrate and teach since June).  It was something to think about, and I told him I'd have to walk around first.  When I got back to my friends, Angela was actually crying, saying "Nicolassa, I've never seen you so happy!" and Josh was 100% ready to buy me that wheel.   Shocked  I'm like the most miserly person since Scrooge, so I kept halfheartedly trying to hold him back, but wasn't exactly upset when he walked back in and bought it!  We picked it up at the end of the day, and Spinning Dude threw in a pound of wool in different colors and one of his hand turned drop spindles (the look on his face when he saw what I've been spinning on was priceless...my trusty spindle is rather humble).  I'm the luckiest girl alive!

So!  Now my Kiwi with the Blue Wheel is home with me, and I'm trying to get the hang of her (she didn't come with any instructions, so it's all trial and error).  It's like I'm a beginner spinner again.   Grin  Yesterday the yarn started becoming more consistant, which is so fulfilling.  I want to run home right now and spin! 

Just wanted to share the joy!  Huzzah!
4  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Estes Park Wool Market? on: June 07, 2007 03:12:10 PM
Anyone planning on heading to Estes Park Wool Market in Estes Park, Colorado June 16-17?  Here's the website:  http://www.estesnet.com/events/woolmarket.htm.

It'll be my first year, and although I can't take any of the classes on Thursday and Friday due to work ( Tongue) I am PUMPED about going to my first fiber festival!! Whoooooop!
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