Right now my New Year looks to be full of crafts.
Almost every week I will be teaching a craft class at my public library. They will cover a wide variety of topics from spinning yarn, weaving, making bath bombs, and much more. I am really looking forward to these Monday’s.
In addition to this, my mother has decided that I need to needle felt a nativity for next year. I’ve tried to explain that I’ll have to do one animal a month or some similar method to that, she is adamant so assembling the fibers for this project is next.
This year, my crafting goals are a little different. I hope to work on assembling a collection of types of spindles from around the world. This should be a ton of fun, and I am really looking forward to discovering how to use all of these different spindles. In addition to my spindle and spinning exploration (and my new felting projects) I hope to advance my weaving skills in the new year. With the Nativity I am now going to felt, I was thinking about seeing if it is viable to weave the camel coverings in bright and beautiful colors. I do not intend for this to be anything too fancy, but I do plan on making several variations and enjoying the process.
The first step in my new year of crafting, in addition to buying the wool I need, is to cut off all of my old warps (since I wasn’t weaving them anyway) and starting fresh in the new year!
Happy Crafting All!
So spinning every day was a great idea. Unfortunately it did not take into account my being sick enough that dragging myself to work was about all I could do. Therefore my spinning has fallen off track a bit, not irreparable though. While I will not actually get 365 days of spinning this year, my goal was to take each month as it comes and deal with it that way. January is sort of shot, I missed about 3 days, but I will finish strong and start up with February.
Speaking of starting up, Mom is almost fully recovered from her previous illness. She has decided to see how many crafts she can finish with the supplies we already have laid in. Essentially she has declared this her year of Stash Busting Crafts! So far this month she has crocheted up 2 cowls from yarn she had on hand, I will put up pictures of those in my next post.
I have decided to accompany her on this quest, though for my major tapestry project I will need to purchase more wool in periwinkle, though I will admit to a desire to see how much of that project I can get done with the supplies I had already laid in. (Warp threads, white weft, and some singles spun in periwinkle, with an addition of gold silk I hope to use to accent a particular portion).
I must freely confess I fear I am already making excuses for not following through, since my next thought is that I wanted to purchase some white wool to test dying techniques. I suppose the best way of doing that would be to dig out what white wool I already have (alpaca, sheep, etc) and plan on using that to dye with until I have figured out which, if any, of the natural dyes get me the colors I want. If the natural dyes don’t work the way I want then I will have just used some of my wool-stash anyway. My next experiment is probably going to be centered around washing the batts that I carded containing ‘sticky wool’. I am hoping that there is some lanolin or other processing oils contained in the batts that is making them sticky. If that is the case then a good hot soak should loosen up the oils enough for me to wind up with a fluffy batt. If not then washing with Dawn, if they start to felt then I might try to spread it thin and experiment with felting.
I am sort of excited to let the wool speak for itself and decide what it will become. I am still spinning thin with the blues, now that I am feeling better. So many exciting things going on!
I picked some more wool up from the Destash group, different breeds to try this time. Clun Forest, Fine X breed, and Border Leichester. They were a lot of fun, and I really enjoyed carding them and discovering what the different fibers were like. As can be expected from a destash group they were not the finest examples of their fibers. It is probable that I should have combed the fibers to get rid of the short second cuts (but since I don’t have the combs or the $100 it would cost for good combs that was not an option).
Despite the second cuts, or maybe because of them, these fibers are spinning up into lovely skeins that can be used for a nice outerwear project. Maybe a throw rug since they are in similar colorways. It is certainly not soft enough for next-to-the-skin garments but ti is very pretty anyway. I am pleased that I was able to experiment with these different types of fiber and look forward to more opportunities to explore!