Friday, October 10, 2008

Step Away from the Political Blogs and WEAVE!

My looms have been quiet until this week – travel, family emergencies, more travel and then the flu – all slowed down my goal of weaving one thing every week. But now I’m back at the loom. I’m trying to spend more time weaving and less reading the political blogs and financial news! (Step away from the computer!) Weaving is much better for the soul and mistakes can be fixed without a Congressional bailout!

Our travels included a brief trip to Salt Lake City and I convinced DH that one morning should be devoted to yarn store shopping. For weavers and spinners, Three Wishes Fiber in West Jordon is the place to visit. Lots of lovely weaving yarns and fibers. I snagged a cone of red Tencel and resisted walking out with a spinning wheel. Another great yarn shop in Sandy is Unraveled. I couldn’t find a website for them, but they are on 700 East and about 9300 South. The folks at both shops were really friendly and expecting me! as I had asked on Ravelry for shop recommendations. (The power of Ravelry!)

On the trip home we cruised off the interstate at Pendleton and checked out the Pendleton Mill Outlet. WOW! Has that shop changed. In the early 70s I use to shop there as I lived nearby. The shop was in a large closet (at least it seemed that way) and mostly had fabric for sale. Now it’s quite large and packed with clothes, blankets and fabric. I wasn’t interested in the clothes – I was looking for mill end cones and selvages. They were out of cones, but expecting some (call ahead) and they did have selvages. I bought about 25 pounds for rugs.

People have told me recently that I can’t weave rugs on my Fireside, however, I have done them in the past, so I’m planning to weave these selvages on it. I’m not sure why I shouldn’t do rugs on it – it’s heavy and didn’t walk when I wove the rugs in the past.

Here’s a little swatch from a scarf that is almost complete. I’m weaving it on my small Louet table loom. The warp is cotton from my stash and the weft is a Silk Merino blend from Lisa Souza. The colorway is Mardi Gras. The pattern is a section of the Bamboo Scarf pattern in the Issue 22 of Weaver’s Craft.

On my Fireside loom, I am warping another laprug. I’m about 60% complete with the warping…a slow process for me. The warp is a light and dark teal cotton and the weft will be a variegated Merino Angora yarn in shades of teal and green.

In honor of a dear friend of mine who joined the great majority in September, I am donating all October proceeds from my line of felted bag patterns to the Obama campaign. She was an avid Obama supporter and I know that she and Tim Russert are having some great conversations about now on the election. So if you are of the Obama persuasion, pop over to my website and buy a pattern.

Now, back to the loom and no blog reading first!


Peg in South Carolina said...

The reason that you should not weave rugs on a Fireside loom, is that it, like most looms around, is a jack loom. You need drum tight tension to weave rugs. Drum tight tension is very hard on a jack loom, but not on a counter balance loom or a counter marche loom. The latter looms are designed to allow weaving on highly tensioned warps. Because Fireside looms are very strong, you can get away with the occasional rug, but if you start weaving nothing but rugs all the time, you will ultimtely wreck your loom. I did weave rugs on my LeClerc counter balance, but I will not weave rugs on my current LeClerc 8-shaft jack. Having moved from a CB to a jack, I can see that when I ratchet up my tension really high, I can get that high tension only on the raised shafts. The lower threads are never quite as taut as the upper threads. This means that I cannot beat the weft in as tightly as I could with my CB and rug weft must be beaten in really really tight. Consequently looms made for weaving rugs usally have weighted beaters.

Holly said...

Peg -- thanks for your excellent explanation! Obviously I need to get another loom :-)