Tuesday, 11 January 2022

Flu

 Yes, flu, no not Covid. Just plain flu accompanied by sinusitis, aching bones etc. Not possible to do much. I live on paracetamol and sudafed. However I do think I am getting better and the films on over the holiday period have cheered me up. For instance I am a devoted fan of Carry On films and my alltime favourite was shown on TV - Carry on up the Kyber. Now the rest of the family thinks these films are low class and not quite respectable. I doubt if they could be made today because they are very politically incorrect.

I have managed to do several things. I set out to take part in the Online Guild`s UFO month and the first thing on my list is to make a waistcoat ( using a Daryl Lancaster pattern). The fabric and its dark red lining are shown below.


The stripes will run vertically. Construction is well under way. I have a large metal cupboard in which I put all my fabric and I search in there for a suitable lining. I originally intended to use some very nice Tencel fabric woven by me using a draft from the book The Draftts of Jeremiah Fielding but decided it was too nice to be hidden as a lining. Anyway. I was horrified by the amount (and quality) of what was stashed away in the cupboard. My daughter, Ruth has taken away one armful and I will take some to the refugees  in Didcot. But I still have several lengths of gorgeous fabric, include four lengths of tweed woven by me. Each is quite sufficient for a jacket and I do not ned four new jackets. Could do with a bomber jacket for round the house though and two of the lengths would be good for that.

And now I must get on. Today`s job is darn the elbows of one of Ruth`s sweaters. She is working in conservation these days and is often out on moors so she needs all the sweaters she can get.  




 

Saturday, 18 December 2021

Back to Normality (I hope)

I see it is months since I blogged. There has been a lot going on here and I have just about surfaced. 

Firstly the good bit. I have bought a static caravan on the North Norfolk coast - Wells-next-the-Sea to be exact. Only a few hundred yards from the sea and more or less on the Norfolk Coastal path. Dogs are allowed and they love it. There are places where the sand stretches for miles and they take off into the distance, leaving us to negotiate all the little streams. Thsy just walk through. In fact, Jerry, my Boston, has hated water all his life but did not even blink when the incoming tide covered his paws. I think salt water must count as different. 

We have been up and down, filling the caravan with our belongings. We have been therer 4 times since September. All meant a lot of time spent driving.

But added to that, starting in October were health issues for me. I suddenly started having dreadful side effects from a drug I take. It took ages before everyone (hospital, GP and me) realised that it was due to changing said drug on to something very unsuitable. Change back and all is well. and I have been okay for the last week or two. However 4 weeks ago, I sprained my ankle ona Wednesday. We had tickets for HMS Pinafore at London Coliseum on Saturday and there was no way I was going to miss that. However whhat with walking round London (2 miles), I then spent the next  3 weeks with my left foot raised up so could achieve very little.

Now I am fine, back to walking the dogs twice a day and weaving. I am making great progress with the Megado where I have completed two table cloths and started on some tea towel and hand-towels. 

I have  dealt with Christmas and the posting out of our calendars as well as having a thorough inspection of the yarn stash. And  spent some time designing a double weave in alpaca so which I have just enough!! The draft is shown below.


Not in black and white of course but maroon and sapphire. Letts hope nothing else gets in the way of weaving progress!


Thursday, 9 September 2021

Jeremiah Fielding

 I forgot to add that Alice Schlein wrote a very flattering comment on the Draughts of Jeremiah Fielding in her blog of 4th September. You can read by selecting from the list of blogs I read in the lefthand column.

Worling Hard but

Working hard but getting nowhere! Certainly not on the weaving front. I have finished tying on the Megado, woven some samples for colour and found four errors. One is corrected but I have had no time to do more. Not sure what I have been doing except tidying up after the linocut course at the end of July!! We have bought a small press. Not anything like an Albion but a modern one from Germany. It took me a bit of practise to get a good result. 

But we are off to Norfolk on Saturday and  getting ready for that. I have bought a new laptop with all the trauma that entails. Mostly it is okay but the USB ports are all these little ones and I have have stuff that needs the old sort (camera memory card reader for instance) and find it difficult to be quite sure that the pictures on line are really the right thing. Bah

But of course I do have some nice photos of Wales from our week in Abergavenny.










Tuesday, 20 July 2021

More on the Ghost Warp

 I have started tying on the new warp. It is slow but My hands are remembering the technique for the knots and I am speeding up.

The photos below show  views of the front of the reed - where all the action is. The lease sticks nearest the reed hold the ghost warp. The other set hold the new warp. I wound four separte warps in shades of blue plus a pale grey plus a lovely spaced dyed in blue Tencel.


I reckon it took three hours to tie on one warp. The problem now, I mean at this very moment) is the temperature of 30 degrees. The studio with the Megado has a southfacing sloping roof which ensures a very uncomfortable work space. So I have given up tying on and set about my next big job. 

I have been remiss for the last 18 months on photography. Oh I have done some but just gardens, dogs, bits in Photoshop for lino cuts but I am going for a course in the Brecon Beacons in August and need to remember the proper ways to do things. So far I have read the first couple of chapters in a very good book on the Nikon D3400. Tomor5row I shal pick up the camera!

And on the topic of lino cuts, I have completed two recently that I liked. London Skyline first then Lobster Pots



Saturday, 17 July 2021

Ghost Warp

 I have put a ghost warp on the Megado. Various points to note. You have to decide what epi is going to be used for the main weavings and then the ghost warp needs to be the same or very near the same epi. Since the ghost warp is not being woven for use, you can use what yarn colour you want in any order. Also you can mix the yarn sizes provided you are not too far from the main one. So there were 720 ghost warp ends and I did tie on and weave a bit looking for errors. I found two in 720. Not bad going. Now it is all done and I have two sets of lease sticks in front of the reed, one is the ghost warp and one in the first true warp. 

 Will post some photos when I start tying.

Sunday, 20 June 2021

Curtain Fabric finished

 At last the curtain fabric is finished, hemmed and cut off the Megado. It is currently sitting in a pile on the dining room table so that I can (some time soon) inspect it for mistakes before washing it all. 

Apart from the tomato plants which seem to take up too much of my life, I have been thinking about the Megado and eventually decided that what was really bothering me was warping up. I am old and stiff these days. But if I could spend as much time as it takes to put on a ghost warp, a lot of problems would disappear. No more threading and sleying for as long as the ghost warp lasts. Sooooo. I will put on a straight draw on 16 shafts at 24 epi (for 8/2 cotton of which I have masses). It will be 30 inches wide and I have created several nice drafts already including a 4CDW. Length will be 2.5 metres. 

I am so taken with this idea that I will do the same on my 8 shaft Schacht. I will have to crawl under the loom to change the treadling but I can manage that. The Schacht will be devoted to tweed and things woolly.

And as Cally Booker said `you can always do double weave with a much thicker yarn`.

The Bracknell College has reopened to much joy and the Columbia Press has been repaired. It prints so much better than doing the printing by hand. I have corrected a lot of small errors, especially in the clouds and am printing in four colours!!! An edition of 12 has been printed and I must start on the next linocut (lobster pots).


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About Me

I am weaver and - -. I dye my yarns with acid dyes, I paint my warps, put fabric collages and stencils on my weaving. I have three looms, a 12 inch wide, 12 shaft Meyer for demos and courses, a 30 inch Louet Kombo which is nominally portable but has a stand, two extra beams and a home-made device containing a fan reed. And last a 32 shaft Louet Megado which is computer controlled, has a sectional warp and a second warp beam and I am the proud owner of an AVL warping wheel which I love to bits and started by drilling holes in. I inserted a device for putting a cross in. I have just acquired an inkle loom and had a lesson from an expert so I can watch TV and weave at the same time. I am interested in weaving with silk mostly 60/2 although I do quite a bit with 90/2 silk. I also count myself as a bookbinder with a special interest in Coptic binding.