Thursday, May 08, 2014

Making Yarn, or Future Scarves

I have fought with my right selvage on every one of my scarves.  I beat with an open shed on dishtowels because I want to pack the yarn in to make a dense fabric, so my reasoning was that I should do the opposite on scarves since I want an open fabric.  Yesterday I suddenly remembered my friend Rae saying that she always beats on an open shed, so I switched and the problem cleared up instantly.
I'm spinning on the last of the fiber Melissa left me last summer. It's going to make a gorgeous scarf and while I have enough handspun yarn for three more scarves, I need to more fiber.
And speaking of Rae, she emailed me a couple weeks ago  to say that she doesn't spin anymore and would sell me some of her fiber at rock bottom prices.  I stopped by on my way home from town yesterday and she wasn't kidding.  She all but gave this fiber to me.  It's largely silk, with the bright bags in the front being silk she dyed herself.  She warned me that some of it's a little felted, but it's going on to the drum carder and so that won't matter.  The bag on the left is camel and the one next to it is cotton/silk 70/30.  Oh, and there's a small bag of black alpaca.
It was like dyeing Easter eggs today - so much color.  
I had blended two batched and was getting ready to start on a third when I realized that I didn't have anymore of my favorite blend of whites, merino/alpaca/silk noil.  I always add white, strange as that may seem. Time to break for lunch!

This is my final batch using colors in one of Rae's silks.  That light blue is some recycled denim/cotton that I have had in my stash at least a dozen years.  It's like drier lint!  I imagine it will probably be a pill to spin, but I'm game.  Weaving scarves is stash busting for me.
This is three hours work, and I do mean work.  The spinning always makes it worth it, plus I just get a kick out of seeing what I can come up with.
This is going to become another one of my "granite" scarves.  I included Rae's tussah silk and camel to the blend but it's mostly merino and silk, some alpaca and llama too.  I can't remember what's in the other's  I just kept grabbing fiber and tossing into my weighing bowl until I had 3 ounces.  

Arik Shapiro, my massage therapist, is also an artist.  Actually he's an artist first who realized in college that he couldn't support himself with art so instead of an art degree, he got a life sciences degree and then went to massage school.  Massage pays for him to do his installation art and now he's getting NEA grants and commissions.  He's also one of the founders and promoters of Reno Art Works, and last week at my session, we talked about the possibility of our weaving guild renting space from them for workshops. 

I got the cook's tour on Tuesday. The date was originally Monday but I broke a tooth and had to drive in for a dental appointment the next day.  It's a warehouse space but the price is right.  Plus, access is a cinch - just raise the bay door and roll in the looms.

I asked him if he knew anything about using a Facebook fan page to promote sales.  And yes he did, and in fact, would give me some tips.  Mainly he said that I needed to use that page to point sales to my Etsy store.  I've been frustrated with Etsy because sales kind of get lost.  It makes sense to use them for their commercial qualities but do my own promoting through FB.  I've read a dozen articles and I'm still ruminating.


weavinfool said...

I heard that you won't be at camp this year. Is that when the wedding is happening? We'll miss you at camp.

What's Alexia up to?

If you need more fiber I have plenty. White wool? I have tons (not literally) available.

Valerie said...

The dye colors are wonderful! And I agree, it is a lot of work to make those batts.

You're going to come out with some wonderful scarves.

Cindie said...

Very fun batts - you're making me want to break out the drum carder again

benita said...

The batts you are making looks so spinnable. The scarves from them should be quite pretty. And what fun to be making your scarves from the ground up - so to speak.