Monday, December 31, 2007

Lonely Scarflette

So, I had *just* enough time during Conall's morning nap to drink some coffee and then scoot out in the snow (yup, snowing again, but not too much, just a couple inches) and take pictures of this little scarflette:

I managed to list it in my Etsy shop, too - where it now sits, in solitary splendor.

It's that turned Ms and Os again, in bamboo. I like this structure. I actually wove two full-size scarves from this warp too, using different weft colors. One went to my Mum for Christmas (hi, Mum!) and the other is going to wind up in my shop once I manage to photograph it.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

First Turns!

So, my sweet hubby pried me away from my various looms and projects today and sent me skiing for the afternoon. I just went up to little Pat's Peak:

Isn't it a cute little mountain? It's in Henniker, NH. Which, as any fiber addict from this area knows, is also home of The Fiber Studio. (uh-oh) But I was good, and resisted stopping in on the way home. Oh - good thing I didn't stop by, it's closed until Jan. 2! Man, though, doesn't it look tempting from its website??

The idea was to check out the mountain to see if it would be a good place to teach Bella to ski this year - I think that's a yes! Nice little beginner's area, non-crowded lodge and slopes, and it's only an hour from home, also good for the little ones. Stowe will have to wait for a longer vacation. (WAH) But this is nice for a day trip, and Carlos and I can sneak in a couple quick runs, too, just for fun.

Overall, it was just fantastic to get out on my skis again. Just my little slalom skis (good thing, it was icy and they love ice), and only 9 or so runs (out of shape), but a lot of fun.

But now I'm stressed about my Etsy store being empty. Eeks. I do have three scarves done and ready for their photo sessions, though. And a shawl that I have half the fringe twisted on... So I'll be posting things to my shop soon!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

An Inkling of an Idea...

Look what Santa brought me!

It's a Schacht Inkle loom! It's a lovely little loom, very sturdy, and very easy to use so far. It seems like it would be a really nice way for somebody to figure out whether they like to weave without spending $1000+ on a floor loom...

I trekked out to Webs on Thursday to buy it, actually. (Along with more yarn, of course, good grief, my name is Kristin and I'm a fiber addict...) Webs is having its year-end sale, and they put their Tencel (which I use) on sale - hooray! I bought some knitting yarn, too, that was marked waaaaay down.

But my main reason for going out there was to buy this little inkle loom. How fun! Pretty easy to use, too, the most time-consuming part is making the string heddles (those bright blue strings you can see in the picture) and warping it. The weaving goes very quickly; since inkle looms make warp-faced fabric, that makes sense.

I'm using my Bambu 7 yarn so far and it is working very nicely. Strong, relatively inelastic, and non-sticky (good for warp faced fabrics).

My Mum took one looks at another of the ribbons I had made and said - "this would make great trim on clothes!" Which got me thinking.... Maybe some handwoven clothing is in my future!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Current Projects

Just thought I would post a couple quick pictures of my current projects...

On the little loom now:

The colors look a little bland in the photo, but they're a bit prettier in real life. Deep gold, a nice basil green, light light yellow and a khaki color, in a that turned Ms and Os structure that I keep coming back to (like the texture it creates in the fabric).

Here are some recently finished scarves that will be Christmas presents, I think:

What a difference wet finishing makes! My Mum was here yesterday (as always on Fridays, the kids love seeing Ginga every week) and was peeking at these scarves, but that was before I washed them... Fabric right off the loom can be stiff, but once it's washed up and dried in whatever way is appropriate for the fiber - hooray! Lovely, soft and drapey. At least, that's the way bamboo, tencel, wool/silk, alpaca/silk, etc. turn out - I have yet to work with linen, but I assume it keeps it stiffness to a certain extent...

Can you believe it's the 22nd of December already?? Yikes! Just about done with Christmas shopping, hooray, now I just have a bunch of presents to wrap up and a turkey to buy...

Friday, December 21, 2007

Fibery Fun

We are so far behind on Christmas this year it isn't even funny... Finally got the tree up and decorated last night (!). I still haven't finished shopping, yikes. I'm hoping to get some done this afternoon - I really *really* don't want to have to brave the toy stores over the weekend, it will be a madhouse.

In the meantime, I have some fun new fibery goodness.

Isn't that felted flower pin awesome?? It's from Liz of MadeInLowell - lovely (check out her etsy shop by clicking on that link!). The scarf is one of mine, that I took out of my Etsy shop to keep, for once, since it goes so nicely with the flower. I have another flower pin, too, that's a lovely combination of green/gold/rust, and a polymer clay barrette that I got for Ms. B. Liz makes gorgeous things!

We have also had some craazzzzy weather, making shopping for Christmas that much more complicated...

Bella's slide out there is nearly buried, too funny.

Three snowstorms in the past week - last Thursday we got about 10 inches, then on Saturday night/Sunday we got more snow plus rain/sleet/general yuckiness, which made a thick crust over all of it (looked like icing, kind of pretty, but rotten for kids - no fun to play in, though Bella sure has been trying!), and then it snowed all day yesterday, too, for another couple inches. Bella is outside right now playing on the deck, making snow castles with her summer sand-digging buckets/shovels, etc.

I haven't wrapped a single present. Or bought the turkey. AHHHHH!

On the bright side, my etsy shop is practically emptied out! My pink scarf sold too - my friend Jake, from college, bought it for his lovely wife for Christmas (hi Cara!!). I'm so happy that it's going to a good home - this is the first time that a friend of mine has bought something from me, and it is hugely flattering. I hope Cara likes it!

I've been weaving a couple of Christmas presents, but have new things in planning stages for the shop...

Thursday, December 13, 2007


Big ol' snowstorm today, first of the year, really, in the Northeast U.S. Fun! I took the kids out earlier - Ms. B had a great time running around with her shovel, Mr. C mostly looked confused as he watched us. Still not too sure about this snow stuff (though he did *really* want to go out in it).

There's been a line of cars on the road in front of our house since 1pm, it's been kind of funny. A mass exodus. Carlos works in one of the few tall buildings in our area and has good views of Route 3 and Route 495 (two big commuter roads) and says it has been funny to watch the traffic - both on those roads and everybody trying to get out of his building.

Later in the winter, people probably wouldn't even really notice this much snow (it's at about 4 inches now - still falling fast, though!).

This is where I really want to be:

Doing this:

These photos as from Stowe - and, no, that's not me or Carlos skiing, but I sure with it were! We're both tele skiers (and normal skiers, and snowboarders, and cross-country skiers - you name it, we do it, more or less)...

After not skiing AT ALL last year (pregnant, what can you do, had the monster baby in January) and only getting ONE DAY in the year before (this for a person who generally skis at least 30 days a year) I am completely chomping at the bit. My poor tele skis may never forgive me.

But maybe I can get over to Great Brook Farm State Park and use my cross country skis tomorrow morning before Carlos goes to work! Fun!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

12 Days of Weaving

Oh my gosh, if you weave (or live with a weaver), check out this YouTube video from Bonnie Tarsis, it's hilarious:

(Let's see if that link worked...)

Lots of packages going out today! The purple scarf is done and being shipped:

As well as the black/white/fuchsia bamboo scarf along the same lines (also sold yesterday - yippee!), and the tencel lace scarf is on its way to Handwoven Magazine (gulp) (wish it luck!).

I must say, it has been a fabulous first year of selling my work... I've done far better than i ever thought I would (the validation, lol!), and it has given me the confidence to move ahead, and not worry so much about whether things will sell or not. What I've discovered is that when I really love a piece, it sells. When I'm not so sure about it, it doesn't.

All except for this scarf, that is:

I love this scarf, and, for some reason, it just hasn't sold. Maybe it's a bit too pink? Not sure, but it's lovely in person (maybe I'll just keep it for myself!).

At any rate, it's been a great year - and if any of my wonderful customers happen to read this - thank you so much!!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Crazy Weaving Weekend

I think I bit off a little more than I could chew this weekend... I finished up the shawl/yardage that was on my big loom, warped/threaded/beamed and wove a second copy of this lace scarf:

(It's a five-end huck lace and it might be published in Handwoven Magazine!! Stay tuned for details...)

And now I'm in the midst of making this scarf as a custom piece for a lovely customer who lives on Nantucket:

I also managed to give Ms. B a haircut:

Phew. This kind of crazy intense weekend calls for comfort food:

That is a picture of most of the ingredients for Dublin Coddle. Hmm, tastes better than it looks. Comfort food, Irish style. It's from The Gourmet Slow Cooker by Lynn Alley. I'm not normally much of a slow-cooker person (we're frustrated foodies - frustrated because we have no time to go out to eat or to cook how we really like to at the moment), but having two kids under four and a workaholic husband can certainly turn you into one... And this book has yet to let me down - every recipe I've tried has been fantastic.

The Christmas tree is going to have to wait until next Sunday!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Big Box O'Yarn

(Notice that the little man is going directly for the little box of chocolates that they put in with the yarn, lol.)

It's all bamboo. Greens, blues, red, deep redy-orange, browns, some yellow and purple... Add this to what I've got in my current stash, and - wheeee! Can't wait to get designing! I'm thinking of more turned twill with bunches of colors in it (love doing that) and experimenting with making pleated fabric, too. All sorts of neat color effects in that, hopefully.

It's also the time of year to be looking forward to Webs' big year end yarn sale! That will happen right after Christmas. So far, at least, we're being good about not spending too much on Christmas, so hopefully I'll be able to buy some yarn then, too. And maybe Santa will bring me an Inkle loom if I ask really, really nicely...

Thursday, December 6, 2007


Carlos (Mr. Skiingweaver) just sent me this picture, which I had forgotten about...

Doesn't it make you want to be a little kid again? It does me. Reminds me that the straight-ahead way of moving through life isn't always the most fun... Or most interesting.

Re: Weaving - the purple scarf that had its 15 seconds of fame on the front page of Etsy is on its way to a new home today! Along with another scarf - wonderful customer. My shop is looking kind of bare, yikes.

But I did want to share some new fabric I wove last night:

They're really more like samples - just 8" wide by about 13" long, but I wanted to weave with some fabulous little 1-yard lengths of silk, and decided to give it a whirl. Warping a 1-yard long warp was kind of odd, but I figured it out. The colored bands are pure silk, the black on the outsides is Zephyr (50/50 wool/silk) and I wove it in a loose twill. Not quite sure what I'll do with them yet (little wall hangings? cuffs?), but I really enjoyed how they came out, with a nice random mix of silk fibers.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Purple Scarf Got Some Major Etsy Love!

Hey, that purple scarf I posted about a little while ago is on the front page right now! On the left in the third row... Neato!


Monday, December 3, 2007

Messy Snow

So the snowstorm that has been making its way across the U.S. landed here in the Northeast last night - and was kind of a letdown... Just a couple inches of very wet snow, and now it's been misty-raining this morning. Oh-so-much-fun to shovel. Everybody helped Carlos shovel the driveway this morning:

Bella was having fun - in last year's snowsuit, no less, I couldn't believe it still fit (hooray for LL Bean!) - Conall looks like he's not so sure about this wet and cold stuff. I'm kicking myself for procrastinating yet again on cleaning out the flower beds - it will be a mess in the spring if this doesn't melt, yikes...

On weaving fronts, I got lots of fun mail today! Some *gorgeous* silk samples from Treenway Silks, and two new weaving books - Fabrics that Go Bump, edited by Madelyn van der Hoogt and Inkle Weaving by Helene Bress. Fun! I was thinking of building an inkle loom (they weave long straps of fabric - I have ideas mulling around...) but after looking at the plans in Ms. Bress' book, I think I'll be lazy and just buy one. Maybe a road trip to Webs or Halcyon Yarn is in order.

Last but not least, we got an invitation to a wedding in New Dehli (India) in the mail! Carlos' very nice friend from work, Kush, and his lovely wife, Lindi, are having a wedding in December in India. A chance of a lifetime! ARGH! (No passport for Conall - and that would be a really really long plane flight for the little guy... I've got to get on top of that passport situation pronto.)

We've made them promise that they'll take us to India when the kids are bigger and able to remember/enjoy the trip... But, man, how neat would it have been to go to a traditional Indian wedding?? On the other hand, they wouldn't have much time to spend with us, and I would really love to eventually see some of the country - with a native, no less, that would be fantastic!

Sigh. Oh well, we're hoping to make some sort of trip this coming fall, destination yet to be chosen (back to France? back to Italy? back to Spain? or something new like Ireland or Scandinavia? So many choices!).