Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Is It Spring Yet?

We moved to our new homestead here in central Illinois on Veteran's Day last year.  With winter rapidly closing in at that moment in time there was not a whole lot we could do outside to sustain our "farming" fix.  With spring-like temps this last week I have been yearning to go outside and begin preparing our garden beds for planting what I hope will be our biggest garden to date.  As you can see in the pictures we are no where near warm enough or dry enough to work on the land...sigh  Way too soggy and cold.

Hopefully you can see the squiggly branches on this tree I am most curious to find out what kind of tree it might be, any ideas?  Not the best of pictures, sorry.  All the branches sort of cork screw, thus I call it the squiggly tree.

Here is a pile of freshly woven towels I pulled off the loom yesterday.  Much to my dismay some of them are lightly stained with rust from my country well water.  I have a lot of trouble with rust stains on my light colored laundry.  We do have a water softener system and it does have a rust inhibitor type of salt in it.  I do use tide with bleach to wash and I have even thrown a color catcher in the loads to try to catch as much of the rust as I can.  Think we are going to have to buy a better softener system.  Not sure what else I can do to prevent ruining my laundry and my hand wovens.

This pattern is one I have woven many times, I call it my Swedish Flower pattern.  It is easy to weave and I love how it looks when it is finished.

  Same threading with two different treadling sequences.

  Wonder if spring will arrive early this year?  Ah well, spring will come when it comes...back to the loom.  

Happy Weaving!


  1. Might well be a curly willow, Salix matsudana. The towels are gorgeous!

  2. Curly willow, never heard of this type of tree before...thanks I will be looking it up. Thank you for your compliments, I appreciate it.

  3. I was thinking curly willow also! And I love your towels. We too, have iron in our water. There is a product called "Iron Out" that I have found effective for getting those stains out as bleach only makes things yellow with iron water. It works well on toilets, bathtubs and laundry HOWEVER! It is very potent and I only use it when I am desperate. It is a powder.

  4. Oh such beautiful towels, well worth going with a new system I say. The cost in ruined clothes and linens justifies it IMHO!
    Care to share that wonderful draft...oh please, please.....:)
    Love the Vintage Singer..301? in it's beautiful oak table.

  5. The vintage Singer is a model 201-2 from 1941, I found her last year and just had to bring her home. Love my old Singers, I have a 500A known as the Rocketeer, and a Featherweight 221 making the total of 3 old girls who live here in the studio. Lost my mind several years ago and bought a very expensive Huskavarna Designer II with all the bells and whistles - I detested that machine with my whole heart. Ended up selling her for 300.00 - the young woman who bought it got the deal of the century -- all I wanted was to get that machine out of my studio. Draft details will be forth coming

  6. Hi Martha, I was delighted to find your comment on my homesteading blog. Congratulations on your place. You have so much wonderful room. I know you have wonderful plans to go with it.

    Winter has just finally hit us too, but my loom, sewing machine, and studio are lost under the consequences of our kitchen remodel. Am thinking rag rugs and table linens though. Maybe soon. :)

  7. These are lovely, is it overshot? I love the red flower band! So pretty.

  8. Yes, Clare the red flower border is a overshot pattern. I have woven it many times and still love the way it looks.

  9. Lovely overshot towels, Martha! Somewhere I read that Orvus Paste might work on rust stains? I don't know for sure, tho. Happy weaving! Kate ;)

  10. Hmm Orvis paste, I did not think of that. Thanks Kate, I will get right on it and see if it helps.

    My dear hubby has the Culligan man coming on Monday, hopefully with a new water softener system and whatever else he can come up with I won't have this problem any longer.

    Love living out here in the sticks, but it can try a weaver's patience when all my hard work is ruined in the wash.

  11. Hey there! Thanks for stopping by my blog. Always exciting to see someone LOCAL who also blogs. Your stuff is so beautiful! I'll be back