Sunday, June 15, 2014

Farmers' Market...The Experiment Continues

I was at the Farmers' Market again this week and a friend sent me this photo that she took.  This was my third time at the Saturday market.  I had some plans change at the last minute last week and my husband invited me to spend the day at the market, so I did!  Both weeks the weather was beautiful and the crowds friendly and full of familiar faces.  One of my favorite aspects of the market so far is the number of old friends and acquaintances that I see!

On the experimental side...the addition of my new sun umbrella is a big bonus.  It is a "joeshade" umbrella, designed for parents attending unshaded sports events.  It's just the right size for my little set-up.  I'm using about 50 lbs of sand divided into three bags to keep the base stable.  Dryer balls have been a big hit.  Some people are buying them to test the concept.  Others buy them because they are pretty and will make good gifts.  Towels are also selling.  None of the towels sold the first time I was at the market.  People weren't prepared to spend that much money that day.  But the last two weeks I have sold towels as well as the dryer balls, and most of the sales have been to people who saw my things previously and came prepared to buy this time.

I'm not expecting to get to the market again until the second Saturday in July.  I have a new set of towels to weave and more dryer balls to felt, but I'm enjoying the experiment so far!

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Pixie Claws/Wool Combs

I have a new set of wool combs!  These are "Pixie Claws" made by Beth Duncan.  I picked them up on Wednesday, and immediately got to work with some Border Leicester fiber I had washed.  The combs do a great job of opening the fiber, removing vegetable matter, and making ready-to-spin top.  I was  thrilled!  I ordered my set of combs with two rows of tines on one comb and three rows on the other.  My hope is that this will give me the extra combing power of multiple rows of tines, but the lighter weight of a comb that only has two rows of tines.  So far, I have kept the three row comb stationary and have used the two row comb in my hands.

 Here is the Border Leicester after a few passes (I think I was doing a total of four passes, then dizing the fibers off).  You can see the "D" shaped handle on the comb in the back.

 The combs have a holding block that allows them to be used as a hackle.

  Turning one comb upside-down on the other  gives a safe way to store the tines.(which, incidentally are not sharp, just pointed.)

 One comb has two rows, the other three (my preference).  These are the medium tines.