Saturday, August 29, 2015

Undressed and De-Throned

Every so often I get this urge to go "Thrifting" at the local second hand shops. Today was one of those days. In a three hour time frame I visited 7 of the 8 thrift stores (that I know of) in my community. 

When I added this girl with the frizzy blonde ringlets to my basket she was SO hopeful that she was about to be adopted into a loving home. What the poor thing didn't realize was that I was actually after the chair she was zap-strapped into. The dress turning out to be Holly's size just happened to be an added bonus.

Holly would enjoy her new chair and fancy Victorian dress much more if that freaky girl would quit staring at her!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

I Did Promise

Ooops! Almost forgot. I did promise that I would show the third place item, a crocheted cardigan entered in the "any other crocheted article not listed" class, 

and a couple of entries that didn't place at all.

The funny thing is, these two entries that were sent home ribbonless are actually items I really, really like!

The lined, blue vest was entered in the "any other sewn item" class. It's a sewing pattern I developed using my custom fit sloper. It fits me perfectly, it is super comfy and, in my opinion, it is very well sewn.

The sequined scarf, though not an example of good technical weaving, with it's (purposely) drifting weft and simple plain weave pattern, is still very much a favourite of mine. It doesn't come across all that well in the photo, but in person I think it is quite stunning -- admittedly due mostly to the choice of weft yarn. The sequined weft yarn slowly transitions from light to dark and back again. It's necessary to wind all the yarn onto bobbins and keep them in the correct order to keep the colour transitions working properly. It was entered in the "scarf or cowl, woven with commercial yarn" class.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Seconds Count

So, as promised, here is a lineup of the fair items I received second place ribbons for.

The Saori hat I blogged about some time ago came second in the Handweaving, "open" class. It's a catch-all category for things like soft sculptures, toys, and tapestry of any technique. I put the hat in that category because there wasn't one specifically for hats and because this hat includes both knitting and weaving. I'm not sure what the competition in that category consisted of because the items are not displayed together by category once they are judged.

The hat is for sale, $60 Canadian, no tax. That's a bargain for American shoppers. With the way our dollar has been falling it works out to about $46 US. The hat is hand woven almost entirely from handspun wool and wool blends. There are a few accents of commercial yarns that contain some man made fibres.

The little handspun sweater I knit for my granddaughter's doll at Christmas also received a second. It was in the "Knit or Crochet, Small Article" class.

A last minute construction, this second place ribbon was won in the "Small Expressions" class of the hand weaving category.

The bookmark was created from a narrow end piece I cut from my handwoven rainbow yardage. It was about an inch of weaving with hemstitching and twisted fringe. After going to all that work to twist the fringe before washing (not knowing what I would use the yardage for), I was loathe to just throw it out when I cut it off the yardage to make a purse.

I manipulated that narrow piece of weaving down a small rectangle of felted handweaving and after stitching it in place with meandering machine quilting I trimmed it back to a rectangle shape. It still needed something so I added a few star shaped sequins held in place by beads.

The little hat I crocheted for my youngest granddaughter's Christmas doll received a second as well.

And here are all the second place items posing together with their ribbons.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

I've Got the Blues

I brought home a significant pile of ribbons from the 2015 Chilliwack Fall Fair! Of the 13 classes I entered I came home with 14 ribbons. How is that even possible you ask? Well three of my first place entries also took home those gorgeous "big ribbons" that my 6 year old granddaughter loves so much!

I'm very pleased that my handwoven Saori tunic not only received a first in it's class (handwoven garment), it also received a beautiful "Best in Show" ribbon.

 Yay for free style weaving becoming more of an accepted art form. 

In that class, along with the big rosette ribbon, I received a nice gift basket.

It contained a couple of cones of weaving cotton, a book light, a plaque, a package of post it notes, a great little pair of scissors, a small rotary mat, and some yarn needles of a style I have never even seen before. Can't wait to try those out!

I entered a two part purse (a black inner purse and a removable Saori woven outer section) in the "Craft Project: Handbag or Tote" class of the sewing section. It received a first place ribbon and a "Best in Section" rosette.

Apparently there were a few laughs over the tiny little sweater I entered in the "Knitted Sweater, any size" class. I don't think they pictured doll size entries when they wrote "any size", but it still won a first and the "Best in Section", perhaps because it IS actually a full sized adult woman knitting pattern that I miniaturized by knitting it with laceweight yarn and 1.5mm and 2.0mm needles.

I also entered a lace cowl in the hand knitting section. It received a first place ribbon.

Another score for the advancement of Saori weaving: my Saori woven rainbow clutch won a first in the "Bag, any style, shape or size" class of the hand weaving section, ---

-- as did a Saori woven scarf which I entered in the "Scarf woven with handspun" class.

So here they are together the six items that took first place.

I'll be back soon to show you the 2nd and 3rd place items, and I'll even show you my submissions that did NOT win.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Time to STOP

Okay, that's it, I'm done with the mess! I've enjoyed the weaving so far, but the mess associated with weaving in a tapestry-esk manner is just getting to me. I really need to stop and move on to a less messy weaving style.

Time to STOP!

I am normally a very organized and tidy person. My craft areas are the exception. While I'm actually working on a project, and need things nearby, it can really get out of hand! The problem is I am usually working on several different things at once. This means that there are messes in more than one area of the house and that, working on various interests in rotation, any one particular project may have to sit for awhile waiting for me to return to it.

That's where the weaving has been for a bit. I've been distracted for the past month by spinning in the 23 day long Tour de Fleece, and when I haven't been spinning my available time has been absorbed by exploring wire wrapping techniques. The weaving room has been a disaster zone for too long. I can no longer stand walking by the open door.

I'll post an update photo in a few days.

I hope.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Al Fresco Spinning

Yesterday, after a long walk, the dogs joined me for an lovely day of "al fresco spinning".

Blissfully Peaceful

The weather was perfect! There was enough sunshine for it to be cheerful, yet a light breeze and occasional cloud cover to keep things comfortably cool. The temperature was such that a person could be comfortable in either jeans or shorts.

Under the apple tree.

To add to the ambiance the ring neck doves were cooing in the background and the gentle breeze played softly with the neighbours' wind chimes.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Glamour Shot

Trying to take a photo of a skein of yarn for posting on a forum, daily for 23 days, while hundreds of other spinners do the same, can make you stretch to find some way to make it look a bit different.

Here was today's effort. 

I actually spun most of this merino/silk blend on Day 8 but didn't get around to plying, washing, and photographing it for several days.