Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Winding down from Week One of Open Studios

I had forgotten how tiring it is to participate in Open Studios. Partly it's because both DH and I have to staff our own studios all day, so we can't trade off taking breaks, except to dash down to the kitchen for lunch (usually at some non-lunchlike hour).

Over the weekend, the jacquard loom decided to misbehave, mostly an action taken by the cables that move the knives up and down. If the knives are not in the correct level, the hooks can't engage the knife, usually at the rear of each module. It happened quite abruptly, so there I was suddenly with threads in little groups failing to lift, or failing to let go of the knife and being lifted whether or not they were supposed to rise.

Of course, DH was too busy giving demonstrations on the lathe to do much adjusting. As a result, I spend more time explaining how the loom works but not actually demonstrating more than a few picks for each visiting group, because I didn't want to ruin any more of the current piece than necessary. (I am not at all fond of needle-weaving repairs...)

In the meantime, I planned a new warp for the 24-shaft dobby loom. In an attempt to begin using up yarn from my stash of fine wool, I chose a beautiful grey-with-just-a-hint-of-blue 28/2 worsted merino (a color the manufacturer calls "atmosphere"), and began beaming sections. The warp will be 19 inches wide in the reed, and long enough for 3 shawls. This picture was taken when only 4 sections were beamed; by the time I quit for the day, I had finished 12 sections.

I also picked out a couple of weft yarns. One is a space-dyed lace-weight knitting yarn that has very long color transitions, in a grey-to-taupe range of hues. The yarn is called Graceful, and I've used it before - it's approximately the same grist as the warp, and very softly spun and plied.

Another is a very dark charcoal grey blend of 45% tencel and 55% merino that's the equivalent of 40/2 worsted in size. Feels like its name - Heaven. Both yarns were from The Yarn Place in Sunnyvale, California, which sadly has since closed..

I haven't decided on a weft for the third shawl, yet. Plenty of time for that particular romp through the stash.

I'll post a screenshot of the threading draft later in the week, but first I'm off to Los Angeles tomorrow for a meeting of the Designing Weavers.


Laura Fry said...

I'm an introvert and I find interacting with the public hard. I think as creative people we are also used to a certain level of alone time and when you don't get it....

Hope you can get the Jacquard figured out quickly. :( So frustrating when things don't work properly.


neki desu said...

hope all's been resolved by now.

Alice said...

Isn't it awful (but predictable!) how looms choose to misbehave during public demonstrations?

Connie Rose said...

I'm with Laura, an introvert. The public aspects of shows or open studios always took a huge toll on me. Hope the next weekend is good, hope your loom is cooperating, hope you have sales! xo

Restless Knitter said...

Gosh I'm so behind on blog reading so this comment comes in rather late. Yarn Place moved to Phoenix, AZ and you can still purchase her yarns.

I was sad when you said that they went out of business because I have some of the Graceful yarn that I really like. Of course, I may have misunderstood what you meant.