kadenza: (weaving)
The most exciting part of weaving (for me) is right at the beginning, when I see the first pattern repeat. The second-most exciting part is testing out different wefts to see how they interract with the warp.
This is the result of today's experimenting. Sad to say, my walnut yarn (the brown stripe) is by far the ugliest. It overwhelms the warp with fuzz, and the plaited twill pattern is barely visible.

[click to embiggen]

From bottom left to upper right, we have navy egyptian cotton, the walnut-dyed wool, cornflower Tencel, gold spun silk I got in Japan, white silk noil, and rose Tencel.
I'm leaning towards the Tencel because it has a real shine to it and is also hard-wearing. The gold silk really pops, but I think it overwhelms the warp a bit too much.
Anyway, I really hope to finish this up before I go away to the east coast next week, so my partner has the whole month of August to make stuff with it.
kadenza: (crafts)
At the June meeting, my weaving guild assigns a creative challenge to work on over the summer. In September, the projects are judged and a prize is usually given. This year spinners were paired up with weavers to create cloth together, and make something with it. My spinning partner and I have decided on one of these snap-closure change purses. She's given me the yarn, so it's all me now (except for the sewing part, which she thankfully said she could handle). As luck would have it, she already had a snap purse frame in her stash, plus plenty of scraps of silk and stuff to use for the lining.

I've decided on a plaited twill, which I've always wanted to do on a wrap, but the treadling is way too complicated for long stretches of cloth. A small piece of cloth like this should be no problem. The warp is shades of purple and pink, and I'm dyeing the weft right now in a smelly bucket full of semi-fermented walnut and butternut husks that Nat and I have been gathering over the past week or so around our neighbourhood. We have three walnut trees and one butternut tree on our route.

Nat is at a half-day soccer/tennis camp this week, so I'm hoping to make some real headway and get the loom empty again in time for the next wrap.
kadenza: (nophoto)
Welp, we've just about made it through March Break. It has actually gone quite smoothly. Nat is very good at entertaining herself, and with a few planned activities, we've avoided crowds and had fun. I've got next to no weaving done, but what can you do. I've got a wrap on the go and have been meaning to start another set of towels– the last ones proved very popular.

We've done origami, painting, cooking, and assorted outings. One surprising hit was a trip to Target, which is having a going out of business sale and all toys are 50% off. We were hoping to find some Lego, but not surprisingly, it was long gone and the shelves were bare. We ended up picking up a couple of Minecraft "papercraft" kits. It's basically a bunch of paper blocks you have to punch out and fold. She is totally in love with this set and spends a lot of her time down in the basement, folding and building. She tells me how much she loves "creepers" and makes little beds and houses for them. I know next to nothing about Minecraft, but according to Nat, "Creepers are not evil. They can't help blowing things up. It's just the way they are."


Jun. 12th, 2014 10:18 am
kadenza: (nophoto)
I scored nearly 3 lbs of silk yarn at my guild's annual auction last night for $10. I can't wait to start experimenting with it. It's natural colour so I'm looking forward to dyeing experiments. Everything I donated to the auction got a pretty good price as well. There were tables and tables full of yarn cones, but a lot of it was unlabelled. I'm glad I got in on the silk.

Nat spotted a butterfly in the grass on the way to school. It seems to be unable to fly, so perhaps it got wet in the rain storm last night and just needs to dry out. I brought it home and put it out in the garden. Google tells me it's a black swallowtail.

edit: I went out to check on it and found it sitting on the same flower. I tried to pick it up, and it flew away. Yay!


Mar. 27th, 2014 09:43 am
kadenza: (crafts)
Wrap 2.0 is nearly ready to go.



Jun. 25th, 2013 07:36 pm
kadenza: (yeah)
I'm having a bit of a nerdgasm over my first Shapeways order, which arrived today. It's my first 3D printing experience, and I can't quite get over the fact that two weeks ago it was a design on my screen, and today I'm holding it in my hand. I am living in the FUTURE! I've been turning it over and over to check it out from every angle, and having CAD flashbacks. Apart from the fact that it took a ridiculous amount of packaging--about a 6" square box filled with bubble wrap for a 3 cm piece--I couldn't be happier with the whole process. I think if I were to change anything, I would make the jump ring a bit more robust. All this for $14 (plus shipping). Next time I might try for the polished silver, which is still only $41.

screenshot2 IMG_2061

Here is my model and the real thing (in bronze)
kadenza: (crafts)
I went to One of a Kind on Thursday. My main priority was of course to view and purchase crafts, but I also wanted to stalk a toronto-based vendor (Candi Factory) who ordered 12 yards of my Knotty Pine fabric in September. I immediately found her next to the entrance, and spotted the fabric on her men's underwear rack. There was actually quite a line of people buying them, and I joined the line. The vendor, Candi, seemed very pleased to meet me, and gave me 10% off despite my protestations. She had several questions about the fabric design biz, and I had to admit that it's not exactly a way to make a living, but it does fully finance my craft supply habit. She said the fabric is quite expensive, but she couldn't resist it.


Marshie reports they were very comfortable. I'm just excited because this is the first time I've actually seen something made with the fabric. When someone places an order I usually write to them asking what they're going to make with it, and not one has ever replied. I think it's because the only way I have to get in touch with them is via the Spoonflower messaging system, and no one ever checks their messages.

kadenza: (knit)
As some may have already seen on Google+, on Sunday I picked up a spinning wheel I found on Craigslist. Since then I've been trying to figure it out, through trial, error and YouTube videos. I can now get it going and keep it going, and produce something that looks very much like yarn. I can't explain the soothing feeling that it gives me to stretch the fibres and watch them twist themselves onto the spindle, and the flow of it, creating order from disorder. I can think of at least two spinners on my friends list—hopefully you guys know what I mean.

I looked up at the sky today and saw cirrus clouds, and the first thing I thought of was fleece. So you know I'm seriously hooked.
kadenza: (crafts)
I've been working on one of those year end summary things, but in the meantime, I just noticed that a silver of one of my fabrics (Knotty Pine) is visible in a graphic on the Spoonflower main page. It's a little thing, but a nice thing.
snip )


Jul. 6th, 2011 12:55 pm
kadenza: (crafts)
Just when I thought my Spoonflower sales had hit a bit of a slump, I get an email from an event planner asking about the status of my Bowling Lane fabric which has been in my gallery forever, but never made available for sale. She wants 250 YARDS which would run her about... holy crap, $4500. I hope the price does not scare her away, because I would definitely appreciate the 10% designer's commission. And apart from that, I'd *really* be interested to know what she's going to do with it.

*fingers, toes & eyes crossed*
kadenza: (test pattern)
So my resolution to post more on LJ is... not going well. If I only have like one thing to say I usually just post to Twitter (Credenza). Anyway, I have no excuse not to post this morning as Nat has just started two weeks of something called Dance Camp at a local dance studio, 9-12 every morning. At the end of each week they will supposedly do a little show for the parents, so that should be kind of hilarious.

I used this icon because I'm currently working on a test pattern pillow. Normally I don't do much crafting in the summer because I'd rather not spend the nice weather in the basement, and also because it's kind of icky down there. But last week we invested in a humidifier and it's suddenly much less musty and gross down there.

On Canada Day we decided to hit Black Creek Pioneer Village on the spur of the moment. I hadn't been since a class trip in grade 7, so... 27 years (sob... I'm old). Anyway it was really quite fun. And they had a weaving lady as well who gave me some tips on rug weaving. I have recently ordered some rug warp and a rag shuttle.

Final random item... the mail strike has been over for a week now and we still haven't received any significant quantity of mail. In fact for the first three days, we got a single letter each day, and 2/3 of them were not even for us. Something called the Canadian Friends of Cuban Jewry has decided that a guy called Moishe lives here, and it seems no amount of "return to sender"-ing will dissuade them of this notion. Anyway, I have two eBay purchases and a yarn shipment from Webs that are somewhere out there and I'm getting impatient.


May. 17th, 2011 07:40 pm
kadenza: (weaving)
I took a tablet weaving workshop on Saturday. We made cards, a beating sword and a shuttle out of wood in the morning, then were given lunch (Quizno's) and learned to weave in the afternoon. I've been making little bands ever since, and what can I say... card weaving is like the crack version of regular weaving.
pic here )
kadenza: (crafts)
I just finished Nat's halloween costume. In case you can't tell, it's supposed to be a shark.

I think it's adequate. After stressing over the logistics of an actual shark suit, I eventually just decided to modify a hooded sweatshirt. She is only 3 after all, and not terribly discerning.

Pic post

Oct. 1st, 2010 05:17 pm
kadenza: (crafts)
Due to popular demand, here are some pictures of my latest weaving project and my dyeing experiments.
Read more... )
kadenza: (crafts)
Overnight I had my 15th and 16th Spoonflower sales, breaking the $50 mark. It seems to take a while, but those one and two dollarses do add up. I forget when I started, March or something [edit: January!]. I can use it on the site as "Spoondollars" or transfer it to PayPal as Actual Money. I think I'll take the cash.

What else... Marshall had his eyes lasered last Thursday, and at his checkup the next day was already 20/15 in each eye. I'm so relieved it seems to have turned out ok. I dropped him off and went shopping, didn't want to be anywhere near the place while it was going on. He's still getting used to not wearing glasses, and it's funny to see him reach down beside the bed each morning, or try to take them off before I administer his drops.

Our 3rd-floor reno is taking foreeeeever but I guess that's the way they usually go. The original estimate was three days, and that was a week ago. Fixtures, switches and outlets are yet to be done, but the floor is in, the paint is done, my warp is wound and I'm so ready to move my loom up there and get started.
kadenza: (log)
My dream of fabric that looks like wood is a reality! I just got another shipment from Spoonflower today, and here are all six of my wood fabrics together.

They are mainly oak and zebrawood with one knotty pine one at the far right. The one second from the right, Zebrano, is my biggest seller.
If this image is breaking anyone's friends page, please let me know and I'll put it under a cut.
kadenza: (carcassonne)
I really should post more often... then I wouldn't have to summarize a week and a half at one go.

I've been doing a lot of cleaning this weekend. I just discovered that the rug in our bedroom is made of pure wool, and I know this because I also just discovered that we have a clothes moth infestation. It's horrible. I have no great love of the rug (which came with the house and will find itself at the curb next garbage day) but I also have many valuable woolen items and a yarn stash to think about. I spent most of the afternoon and evening vacuuming and clearing clutter. In a word, ACK. The thought of bugs EATING MY STUFF just makes my skin crawl. This never happened in the condo.

In happier textile news, my woodgrain fabrics continue to climb the Spoonflower charts. Three more people have purchased swatches of the Zebrawood in the past five days, and it's on the "what's hot" section of the site. Unfortunately I don't get a cut when someone buys a swatch, but it probably means they'll soon be ordering larger quantities. In the meantime, I've ordered 12 more swatches of my own designs so they can be eligible for sale as well. As I've mentioned before, this isn't exactly a huge moneymaker, but it's certainly enjoyable. I love to create repeating patterns. My newest uploads include oak, knotty pine, cork, bark and beach sand.

I never did mention that about three weeks ago, my dad knocked himself out in the middle of the night by falling and hitting his head on the wall. The next day he had a variety of alarming symptoms including slurred speech, blurred vision, blue lips, low blood pressure, erratic heartbeat, extreme confusion and hallucinations. We were certain it was a stroke until pneumonia and a concussion were discovered during an emergency MRI. Lack of oxygen from the pneumonia explained most symptoms, and the concussion explained the rest. His recovery has been slow and the bacteria seem to be pretty tough, but during a visit today he seemed completely back to normal which was a huge relief to me.

I wove

Feb. 3rd, 2010 03:27 pm
kadenza: (newsflash)
It's my fourth class, and I'm finally weaving. Who knew it would take me 11 hours to get to this point. But actually, I don't feel that bad about it because a woman who sat next to me today said she's taken the course twice now and is just today finishing off her sampler. I am totally in love with the whole process, but I can see I'm not going to be doing my own project (as opposed to this ugly sampler) anytime soon.

checkit )
kadenza: (zeke)
Update 1: Zeke seemed to be getting worse for a few days but then turned a corner a few days ago. I noticed he wasn't making as many trips downstairs. Yesterday he went into the litterbox (with my mother, Nat and I watching with great interest via LitterCam) and did a great big pee. I was so relieved (and I'm sure he was too). The diet and medications are clearly working. One thing I've noticed is that Kirby is jealous of all the attention Zeke has been getting, not to mention the special food he gets while locked in the upstairs bedroom and twice-daily doses of medication disguised as treats with the Pill Pockets. I've been trying to give him extra cuddles, and treats when Zeke gets his meds. Also using my Kirby icon instead of the Zeke icon might help.

Update 2: Weaving! I already love it and I haven't even technically started weaving yet-- I've spent the first three classes (nine hours) just putting on the warp. But I finished that up yestrday and the actual weaving should commence next Wednesday. I get so absorbed I lose all track of time. During the second class, I glanced up at the clock and did a double-take. I asked my instructor, "Is that clock right? Did an hour and a half just go by?" and she just smiled and said, "Welcome to weaving."


Jan. 20th, 2010 04:21 pm
kadenza: (crafts)
Further to my post from last week, someone just contacted me through Spoonflower wanting to buy one of my fabric designs (ginkgo leaves) but says she can't figure out how to get it into her cart. That's because in order to sell your designs, you first have to get a test swatch printed and then approve it. That costs $5 and seems to take about two weeks. So let's see, I could tell her to hang on a few weeks while I do the test swatch routine, which would cost me $5 and get me 10% commission on the sale, which would mean a profit of maybe a dollar or so, depending on how much she actually orders. Or, riskier, I could do the order on her behalf (no proof requirement if you're just buying it yourself) and then ship it to her and get her to Paypal me, or sell it to her via Etsy. Sounds way too complicated. I guess if it turns out she's patient enough to wait for the test swatch approval process and go the "official" route, then my fabric will likely appear on the front page as "recently sold" which might very well result in more orders. I wish the process wasn't such a pain in the ass, but I get that the colours may shift in unexpected ways and that it should really be inspected before someone goes ordering yards and yards of it.


kadenza: (Default)

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