Monday, February 28, 2011

Quilting Frame to Warping Reel

**This post is very late. The work shown here was done in 2008. I went searching for a post about it, and discovered I never wrote one. Dooh!**

Years ago, my mom gave me an old quilting stand with a hoop.

I do quilt, and, until recently, only did handquilting. However, I have never used this hoop and stand for quilting.

Rather, I turned the stand into a home made warping reel!

The ends of the reel are plywood triangles with their corners cut off and notched to hold a slender piece of wood (~1" x 3/8"). A steel rod goes through the center of each plywood triangle and rests on the notches in the stand that originally held the support bolts for the hoop.

Three dowels stick out on the right to make a warping cross. They are in a piece of 2x2 that has been grooved to rest on the plywood. On the left, there are holes drilled in the 1x3/8 boards for dowels for the end of the warp.

The strings around the reel in the photo are two separate warp measuring strings. I use the light colored one for warps 4 yds or less; the blue for longer warps. I think I can wind up to a 7 yd warp on this reel (it has been a while since I have wound a warp that long...I tend to do short warps).

The reel was constructed in October or November of 2008. It has seen almost all my warps since it was made. It works great for me!

A word of thanks--my husband is the woodworker at our house. I drew up the plans and he made them a reality. Many thanks for this and other projects!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


From the loom: "sunburst" in 20/2 tencel (warp & weft), 45 epi. I love how this is weaving! I wrote out the threading by shaft number because my printout was too small to easily read. I've been using for my treadling sequence too --held to my floor lamp by a magnet! The design is from Twill Thrills p.56.

From the dye pot: This is Romney wool roving dyed "dusty rose". It is a beautiful color, one of my favorites! The roving was only briefly wet prior to entering the dye pot and irregular dye take-up resulted. I've separated the roving into dark, medium, and light bundles and am aiming to spin a variegated yarn--dark at one end, light at the other.

The first two colors (dark on top, medium on bottom) have been spun. Light is next.

And from the sewing room: This is my latest project--a duct tape dress form. I have high hopes of sewing with my handwoven cloth. I also happen to have huge fears and feelings of inadequacy about my ability to turn cloth into clothing for myself. I believe in conquering fears by working on the underlying skills I read & skimmed Warch's "Illustrated Guide to Sewing" yesterday afternoon. The book belonged to my grandmother who was an amazing woman and could work some amazing tricks with cloth. Then I stumbled upon "Vintage Sewing Info" and read "Modern Pattern Design" by Pepin (c. circa 1942).

The two things combined made it clear that I need to experiment with line and drape...and it would be great if I could do this at small scale. (Warch encourages the creation of a mini-dress to practice skills without using great expanses of cloth.)

The duct tape dress form was made following the directions here. Basically, plastic bags were worn like a dress and layers of duct tape were carefully placed over that. It took almost two hours, start to finish, for the taping. It took less than two rolls of 60 yd heavy-duty duct tape. Right now it is hanging on a hanger with a padded cardboard insert across the shoulders. I would like to put it on a stand, but this works for now.

The next thing I would like to do is make a miniature version of this dress form. I'm thinking that 1/4 scale would be good (~16" doll size). I found a site that makes dress forms for dolls. I'd love to have one like that for me! If nothing else, I'll be taking measurements from my duct tape form and approximating "my" shape in a smaller size.

Then I'll begin to play around with some of the clothing designs in some of my "clothes for weavers to make" books.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Dyeing on Snow Days

This is what I do on snow days.

8+ ounces of olive green roving

8+ ounces of what I'm calling "candy apple" red.

A series of blue roving. The dark ones were the first in and out of the dye pot. The light blues were an attempt to make use of the leftover dye in the pot after the dark set came out.

And, this photo is the recycled chenille scarf. :)

--We got 1" of pellet ice by Tuesday morning. We had another 2-3" of pellet ice and snow by Wednesday afternoon. We never lost power--and I am so grateful for that! I couldn't have dyed so much without running water and heat!