I decided that my second big project of the year, or third depending on whether I am counting Spinzilla or not, was to make a half-granny shawl for my mother from my Spinzilla yarn. I remain completely amazed at how well my chaotic riot of colors works together. This was started while I was waiting for my mother to have a minor surgery, it was supposed to be half and hour and wound up taking two hours, thank goodness I had my crochet with me. Fortunately mom came out with flying colors. I enjoy the ruffled edge (alright it wasn’t supposed to ruffle but it’s cute anyway) seems to tie the entire piece together.
Just last night I received my Babe Tapestry Loom (they call it the Garden Gate Loom). This loom could not have been easier to put together, the instructions were very clear and easy to follow. I love that I will be able to create a tapestry that is quite long once I have finished my sampler piece that I am using as a starter piece. The inch marks are my own addition but the holes going up the sides came with the loom and allow me to adjust the device to any size I wish. There are metal pins that allow me to keep the loom at whatever height I wish and create adjustments in warp tension, I imagine.
As you can tell I have started weaving my sampler piece, planning to see how shades of blue interact with the white warp as well as sampling different weights of yarn for stability and appearance.
As you can see I have a bit of a wobble on the very edge of the piece, but a little hemstitching and some careful weaving created the first inch of my piece. I love the 2 lease sticks and shuttle that came with my loom, they work great. It did take me a bit to figure out the best method for me, after trying that paperclip heddle bar thing, I decided that picking up the back warps every other shed isn’t really that big of a deal, lol. It looks like I will be weaving plain white for another inch or so then starting on the trains. It will be very interesting to see how this turns out, wish me luck!
I managed to download this pattern from Thingiverse and it was created by kg6gfq. One of the libraries that I work at obtained a 3d printer about a year ago but I have not heard of it being utilized too much. Being the very curious person I am I decided to poke that particular rattlesnake and print something out. I checked out Thingiverse and found Drop spindles, bobbins, even the plans for an Espinner out of printed materials. I was over the moon, so I downloaded the ones I liked, came into work a couple of hours early, and started to mess around figuring things out. The first thing I found out was that none of the files were in a format I could use. Some checking around led me to believe that I needed them in Makerbot Formula. None of the libraries computers had that format so I would have to bring my laptop next time (my home computer is a Mac but my Laptop runs Windows 10) install Makerbot and see what I could do.
The next week I brought my laptop in (I only work at that library once a week) downloaded the software and began to convert the files, it was actually pretty simple once the program was installed. I was very happy thinking that I would now be able to print out, at least, my 3d spindle. I went home pleased with how next week was going to go.
The third week into my venture I went to work an hour early to see about getting my printout started. I plugged my usb drive in and went through the materials I wanted printed. Everything worked perfectly, time estimates, printing sizes, etc. Except that nothing would print out. There was no filament waiting to be used to print. Darn. I looked around a bit and finally had to admit, I was going to have to ask someone.
After a couple of e-mails and a further couple of weeks I now have my 3d printed turkish spindle. While it would have been a lot less aggravation to just order the thing from Turtlemade or another company that prints them, I am pleased that I now know how to convert a file to be usable on a Makerbot printer. My next steps are to see about creating an original pattern to print out, finding out what they are going to charge in the future for printing jobs, and testing out my spindle. I knew I should have brought fiber to work with me, lol.
Okay, Okay, so I’m still in my silk mood. I ordered 4oz of Bombyx silk from etsy. It is so much fun to spin, then I might have to see what I can do about dying it. Apparently silk dyes as easily as wool, it should be fascinating to see what colors I can create without losing the luster. I sincerely hope that I will be able to get at least 100 yards of 2 ply silk, but whatever I wind up will should be beautiful. So much fun!