Thursday, October 24, 2013

October is Nearly Over?

October is nearly over?  Where did the month (and Autumn) go?

2 Ply Handspun Coopworth.

While spinning the first two bobbins of Coopworth roving, 3 weeks ago or so, I recalled that I do not like small skeins of handspun yarns.  What could I do except go online to The Woolerly and order the plying head/kit for my folding Lendrum double treadle wheel.  It arrived with no instructions, so I headed to YouTube to find a video to show me how to change the original spinning head to the plying head, and in particular, how to change the drive band.  After watching a short video by Paradise Fibers, I had everything changed over in short order and could proceed with plying.  Two original bobbins equaled one full plying bobbin!  I skeined if off with the Ashford (floor) skein winder and could get a quick photo.  There is a lot more Coopworth to spin up, I'm looking forward to hours of pleasant spinning, then knitting it all into a warm winter cardigan.

Early in October, I was able to be at a bear "cub" release with Wild Instincts.  They raised five bear cubs since spring, bearing hunting season is over, and now they could be placed back into the wild.  First they were tranquilized so they could be transported, then tagged (FDA requirement), placed in critter carriers for the ride, given a shot to wake them, then we waited for them to wake up enough so move off on their own. 

Tranquilized bear cubs.

Tagged, and trying to wake up.

The last one, going off to his new life.

It has been snowing nearly every day.  The next two photos were taken this morning (Thursday), and it has snowed more or less most of the day.  I'm looking for a couple bit warmer days with a some sun so I can fill those wood racks in the garage, and get wood under tarp into the woodshed.  

From my bedroom window, leaves still on the lilac, now snow-covered.

My summer "dye studio," now winter scene.

Needless to say, my winter dye studio will be either in my somewhat heated garage, in my kitchen, or the dyeing will just have to wait until late spring/early summer, not my first preference.  I'll make something work!

The night before my flights, I suddenly decided to apply to be on the 2014 Northwoods Art Tour again, and dropped my application, check, and nine photos (weaving, socks, studio) into the mail on my way out of town.  It will likely be a couple weeks before I hear if I was selected, but I am hoping.

Meanwhile, I have been coming up with new ideas to try with woven shibori, and with a few yards left on my loom, I can now begin trying them out and see if I can make them work.  I'm learning to keep a notepad and/or sketchbook nearby, even when travelling.

Now that I've had time to rest after my travels (a ridiculous amount of walking!), I'm looking forward to weaving, experimenting, and keeping good notes!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Life's Little Interruptions

No, I didn't forget about my blog!  I had family visiting here for five days, took a couple days to just chill, and then my annual infection in a tooth enjoying a slow death decided this was the time to complicate life.  I'm halfway through the antibiotic, have been able to cut back on number of Ibuprophin I'm taking, and finally gotten back to working with fibers again.

Handspun from Coopworth roving.

Three or four years ago, I brought home two large bags of Coopworth roving from the WI Sheep & Wool Festival, one bag of this beautiful natural brown roving, the other, white.  An invite to participate in the first annual Spinzilla arrived, but a realistic look at my schedule and a couple commitments clearly showed I could not take an entire week in October and do nothing but spin 24/7.  Hopefully next year, I must remember to mark that on my calendar.

So while enduring a fair amount of pain over the past five days, I decided to do a little spinning when Ibuprophin had taken the edge off things.  I am spinning this on my double treadle folding Lendrum wheel, and now have two full bobbins.  I really dislike tiny little skeins of yarn, and am now waiting for the plying head kit for this wheel to arrive from The Woolery, along with a new drive band (original band is now about 7 years old).  As soon as it arrives I'll ply the two together, and then I can spin up more, hoping for enough for a sweater. 

I am currently working on more woven shibori scarves, the next blog post will have photos of the new scarves.

Small Red-Tail Hawk, during its exam, upon arrival at Wild Instincts.

My most recent wildlife run for Wild Instincts was to transport an injured Red-Tail Hawk.  It was examined, given subcutaneous fluids, tube fed, then ate a small fish on its own after being settled into a recovery area.  Tags on it showed it is part of a study from the Chicago O'Hare Airport area.  Hoping for recovery and release.

Now, back to my loom, it's nearly Oct. 5th and I am not finished!