Sunday, November 21, 2010

Cotton and rayon scarf

Something different for me to weave. It is cotton and rayon, mostly cotton. It bloomed nicely after washing. It is sturdy and will be warm on a cold day.

We just returned from visiting Jacksonville, Florida. We lived there for 16 years while our kids were growing up. Visiting friends and walking in our old neighborhood were especially nostalgic. The weather was beautiful as usual. I use to complain that I was tired of such beautiful, blue sky, white cloud days.  Gray days were few.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Woven Bling Collection Scarf

The rigid heddle loom has been blazing recently. This scarf is rayon mix. 
Lots of shine -  it drapes like silk.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Ears of Corn Placemats

I finally returned to weaving on my floor loom. I dressed it for another series of placemats. Third time warping this loom with sectional beam was easier. I complete it in less than 3 hours. Hooray. It took me DAYS to warp it the first time. 

Don't they look like corn cobs?  I used fabric that came from my daughter's wedding reception a few years ago. The fabric was Kona cotton that we used for table cloths. It was an October wedding with the colors, brown, green and golden yellow.  The warp is alternating brown and natural 8/4 carpet warp. I used 7 epi for warp.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Time for Weaver's Dance

I stopped by Holly Bees in Valdese, NC a few weeks ago. I couldn't help it but I spent WAY past my pre-determined limit this trip. Shandy, the owner, is a sweetheart. She is always so helpful and has a wealth of knowledge. She also has the BEST prices anywhere. You should check it out. She has an online link with her location. I guarantee if you are a weaver or knitter you will not be disappointed. 

She stocks cones of cotton, rayon boucle, linen, rayon chenille and so much more. She sells the cones which are mostly 2 pounds worth for less than what 8 -16 oz usually cost. Her prices are unbelievable. She also has the best prices on knitting yarns as well.

Here's the newest additions to my stash.
Yea. I went a little overboard;)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Latest Skinny Scarf

I love blues and seem to be on a blue streak at the moment. I'm playing around with rayon boucle and a variety of odd things I have in my accent yarn box. 

The colors are not quite correct in the photo. It's a teal and blue/green with a lot of sparkle.
I think I'll include these scarves in my Woven BlingTM Collection.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Family Heirloom Table Refinishing, Oh MY!

Wow, this one was a challenge and a BIG Deal. Our walnut dining room table was given to us by my husband's parents. Family lore says they had it made to their specifications by (I'm not making this up) a one-armed furniture maker.  It was designed to fit into the dining room of their home in 1950.  They gave it to us when we bought our first home in 1984.  A family treasure, for sure.

The table went with us from North Carolina to Florida and back to North Carolina over the past 30-odd years. At first, we didn't eat our family meals on it. We feared the kids would spill things, drop things, or worse. The table eventually became the center of our family life.  Birthdays, holidays, and 'just sittin' around the table happened. Homework, lots of homework, negotiating with teen-agers, and sipping warm cups of coffee all have a place in the table's history.
We took pretty good care of it for years. But somehow after one of kids learned how to use a drawing compass, poking the sharp point into the table to stabilize her work, we got more and more lax. The drink glasses left rings. Something large and heavy was dragged from one side to the other at a time that NO one saw it or knew anything about it.  Imagine that? 

Like other members of the family, it began to show its age.

With fear and trepidation, I took on the responsibility of refinishing it. I did a bit of refinishing years ago. I used furniture from thrift shops which meant it would have been ok if I ruined 'em. In the back of my mind,  I was learning how to refinish furniture in order to one day fix the Bell Family Walnut Table.

This was the year to fix the table. It was Time. I began. I wanted to simply take off the years of wax using the Formby's refinish product. It worked like a dream. The gunk came off and left the reddish stain that was originally put on. The rings and scratches were gone. So far, so good. 

My husband told me about this great poly, tung oil and mineral oil mixture that works well for wood turned bowls. I thought if it worked for bowls, it would be great for the table. Wrong! It was a mess. It was uneven, shiny in some spots, dull in others. So I did what any self respecting hobbyist does - let it sit there for a week or two. I hoped it would miraculously fix itself sitting on the porch.  No luck or miracles were to be.

The biggest problem was the poly was not going to come off with Formby's refinish product. I have an orbital sander, and I knew I was going to have to use it. I cringed for days thinking about the damage I could do to our beloved table. 

In the middle of my procrastination, we got a call from the in-laws, Anne and Buddy. They were going to be in our area in a few days and wanted to stop by.  Panic! I had to act and had to act now. 

With gloves, ear-protection and goggles on, I looked like a character in a bad Saturday Night Live skit.  I took up the sander when my husband was away from the house. He would have freaked seeing me attack the table with power tools. I worked slowly and steadily getting the poly off. Along with the poly, came the original reddish stain.  Too late to go back now, I kept at it. 

Soon I had a smooth surface on a beautiful walnut colored table. I was amazed how pretty the table was in its natural color. My Google research yielded the correct product to seal the wood with a natural look. I was able to put 3 layers on each day for the next 3 days. Late on the third day, it was looking really good and I could relax. When Anne and Buddy arrived, the table still sat on the porch with drop cloths around it. The table was not restored to its original color; it was better!  Whew!
 Rings galore
Compass and protractor evidence

Finished and ready for 60 more years of service

Friday, October 8, 2010

New Skinny Scarf in My Favorite Color-Blue

Rayon Boucle with ribbon and eyelash accents
Completed on rigid heddle loom

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Enjoying Rigid Heddle Loom

I'm taking a break from spinning and dyeing. Playing around with the
Rigid Heddle loom is fun. It's so quick. I can also weave in the living room instead of my fiber arts studio. It's nice to be around the family.
Latest scarf on the loom.

I used sock yarn with ribbon accents.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Results of my labor

I spun the rovings I dyed this past weekend. I seem to be in a 'green' period. I always love blue. The green was inspired by the leaves on the trees now at the end of the summer.  Yellow is beginning to show thru the green.
My first use of my new rigid heddle loom with my own hand-spun, hand-dyed wool.
I'm  tickled to have accomplished this.

Monday, September 13, 2010


I spent the weekend dyeing roving. I LOVE color. I am very fortunate to have a friend who gave me wool when she sheared her sheep.
I'm trying to train my eyes to learn subtle variations in color. It has been so much fun. I even enjoyed watching NFL football yesterday. The variety of colors, hues and tone that come out of the TV during a football game is amazing.

My first batch - spring-green dark to light
Then I wanted to play around with color combinations.
 I did handpainting  on 2-4 oz at a time.

All rolled up and ready to spin!

Let me know what you think of it. I had so much fun!

Monday, September 6, 2010


I'm excited about these place-mats. I found some great upholstery fabric and decided to weave these with a fabric fringe.  I'm pleased about how they turn out.
Fabric I used on right

I made 6
For Sale @ $75 plus shipping

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Latest Woven Place mats

My back is getting better everyday. Thank goodness.

I took pictures of my latest weaving project-placemats out of upholstery fabric remnant. It turned out nicely. I like the heavier feel of the fabric as I wove. I used 1/2 inch strips that I "fussy-cut"( a term quilters use) to get the shading I wanted.

This shows the fabric I used

Monday, August 30, 2010

New Look

I've been playing around with the page design a bit. I think I improved the page.

I haven't added to this blog since May. That's not good. But I have been busy creating stuff.

 I was gung-ho weaving place mats. I learned to warp my loom using sectional beaming. The first time took me three days. The second time took me a day and a half. Maybe next warp will be less than a day.

Unfortunately, the thing that 'did my back in' was tying on the second warp to the first.  I stubbornly refused to remove the back beam and bent over it for over two hours. BIG MISTAKE. The back seemed better after a day or two.  Then I decided to refinish a table. Another big mistake. Sometimes I'm pretty clueless to what my body is trying to tell me. Now I have my dining room table on our screen porch half refinished and guests coming for a dinner party next Saturday. O well, we'll adjust.
I'l take some pictures soon of my weaving and post them.

It is amazing what I can catch up on while I'm "laid up."  Delinquent blogs are a good start.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Pulled rugs off of loom today

Oh man, I love the dopamine rush I get when I finish a project.
Lookee lookee, I have two new rugs.

The first on was previously posted while it was still on the loom. My husband likes it so much he wants it in our kitchen.

The second one used the same warp as the first. The weft was from old T-shirts. My youngest recently sorted through his clothes and discarded lots of T-shirts. Before I sent the clothes to Shepherd's Care, I picked out things I could 1) cut up for making rugs or 2) wear myself. It is a delight to get hand-me-downs from my kids!

I like them both. I especially like recycling old clothing.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

On the Looms

Completed my first rag rug on the new loom.

Warped 'baby bear' loom with rayon boucle from String and Things in Valdese, NC. I'm using a 4 thread Bronson lace weave. Easy to do and looks so delicate.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

More pictures of JCC

Hubby at Woodturning class

Joann taught us a great way to warp the loom.

John C Campbell Pictures

I enjoyed a week in Western North Carolina learning to weave rugs with Joann Hall

My buddy Marcie

A great facilityMy first attempt at rug making
Awesome rug by classmate

Contra Dancing at night. FUN! FUN!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Blog 1 year anniversary

I started this blog May 1, 2009. What a fun way to record what is going on in my life! It is a great record of things I've worked on and done (if I remember to post on a regular basis!)

Since the last post, Andy and I have traveled to the Farm to see Nannie and Grandaddy, and ventured to Richmond to see Andrew and Katie's new home. Jeremy is here for a week or two between semesters. Amanda and Josh visited at the end of their semester also. Looking at all that 'visitin' I see I have a good excuse for no blog entries.

The weather today is a mountain classic, foggy, damp and gray. The perfect type of day to catch up on my to-do list. . .or not. Right now sitting in bed, looking out the window while I write seems what needs to be done.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

John C Campbell Folk School

I just got home after spending a week at John C Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC. It was an absolutely fabulous time. I had the pleasure of learning from Joann Hall of Glimarka fame as well as from my incredibly creative and talented classmates, Myrna, Sue, Deb, Erla, Jess, Pat, Marti, Melanie and my buddy Marcia. Christie got me out of my many 'crisis'. Thanks guys.

It took two days to warp the loom with a new-to-me technique. The rag rugs woven were as varied and special as each women in the class.

I'm too tired to write more right now but will share pictures soon.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

UFO completed

This is a bag I started on two years ago.
Today, I finished it.
What a great feeling!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Mini bag Explosion

Second Mini-Bag. I love it.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Ta-Da! Mini-bag Completed

Isn't it cute?

The pattern is from Tracy Brookshier.
The pattern is "BB Bags".
I made the Traveler size.
Find it at: