Thursday, March 8, 2012

Making "Lemonade"

What do you do when a project from your loom does not exactly work out as you planned?  Why you make "lemonade" of course - or maybe I should say adapt and overcome.

Had a warp of cotlin on the loom warped for a customer's special request - she wanted me to weave a few more towels for her church using an overall overshot pattern.  These towels were to be smaller than I normally weave.   Having worked with this particular yarn and this overshot pattern many many times I felt safe not doing a test sample.  Yes, you guessed it I paid the price.  The towels are way smaller after wet finishing than I like.  Rats!  Waiting to see if the customer will be interested in these towels or not.  I have decided that if she decides not to purchase them I am going to gift them to her church anyway.

Used the rest of this short towel warp to weave what I was thinking were going to be fingertip towels.  Hah, the best laid plans of weavers who don't sample....  After wet finishing these particular towels they are way too small to be considered a towel.  Hmmmm what to do.  After considering and pondering I decided to create ta dah.... complexion wash cloths.    How is that for creativity?  I ran into this type of wash cloth while several years ago, they are very popular in Europe and England so I figured why not try it out.

I present my lemonade solution to my problem of too short towels...

For the overshot portion of the wash cloths I used up some of the various bobbins of yarn I have in my studio from other projects.  Waste not ... want not as my Grandmother taught me.  

Speaking of waste not want not while working on finishing the above projects I decided to pull off a warp of towels that have been sitting on my table loom for the last 3 years.   Found three nice size towels and a portion of a fourth sitting on this little loom.  Tried to salvage the rest of the warp but after two long distance moves it was not worth the effort.  Think the towels are okay, not sure what possessed me to use purple as the weft!  Must have had some sale yarn, can't remember.

Off to go and find a new project to weave.  

Happy Weaving!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Customers Are Keeping Me Busy

Just finished weaving 10 potholders for my etsy shop.  I had a past customer ask if I would weave this particular pattern with a dark brown background for her - of course I just had to comply with her wishes.   I have woven this particular overshot pattern several times and like that I can vary the look of the finished product by varying the treadling and of course by varying what yarns I use.  Here is the rose treadling version of the pot holders.  For those of you who are wondering -- the pattern can be found in HW.  I did change a few of the details so that finished product is more to my liking.

Not sure if the general public can tell the difference between the two patterns, but I do like them both.  Below is the star treadling of the pattern.   Forgot I had this particular pitcher, it is hand made by a potter in Atsugi, Japan.  Picked it up when we lived overseas.  It has the best texture in the glaze, kind of rough and pebbly.

When I was putting the Japanese pottery pitcher away in my Hoosier Cabinet I thought you might like to see my Swedish Christmas cookie -- it hangs from the cabinet door latch.  This particular cookie has been hanging on the latch for over 3 years, which means it has survived 3 different long distance moves! No, I have not done anything to preserve the cookie, she is just your average ginger spice Swedish Cookie.  Have to admit I really do like her.  

  Must not forget to show you my last big custom order.  These towels were woven in cotlin and linen for customer out east.  Found out while I was  talking to my customer that these towels are to be used by the clergy of an Orthodox church during celebration of mass.   That information made me nervous, everything had to be perfect!  Have to admit to you my fellow weavers I was not pleased to have to fringe these towels, however that is what my customer I complied.  Because you and I both know that the fringe will never last the test of time I wove another set of these towels with hemmed edges and gifted them to the church.  That way I can sleep at night and not worry that all the hard work that went into these towels won't be wasted.

Because the original request for the "church towels" was for 2 towels, I warped an extra few yards so that I could weave a few towels for my etsy shop.  The resulting towels below have a wonderful variegated Belgium linen for the pattern border.  Think the towels are very classic and traditional looking don't you.

Enough rambling, I need to go and get busy working another order.  Stay warm out there my friends.

Happy Weaving!