Thursday, July 23, 2015

What's New? I'm On A Roll !!!

Hello!
I have gotten my mojo back!  Yippee!!!!

I'm weaving, sewing, washing fleece, dyeing fleece, and spinning again!

I hate slumps.  However, it seems that once I've worked my way through the slump, I seem to do better on the other side of it.  Nothing wrong with that.

I finished weaving my black and white cloth.  The warp was cotton, the weft was all tencel in black and white.  It was a learning experience for me.  I've woven with tencel before, and I know how it feels when it's finished.  However, I haven't sewn cloth made with tencel, and that was a learning experience for sure!  That stuff can challenge a person with good sewing skills, let alone someone who manages.

  
I tried to get good photos, but on the gray background, it looks a bit washed out.
Five yards.  I only used 4 in the sewing so I have those "plain" sections left over.  I can always combine them with something else to make a new project.
Here is the finished shirt.
 

This is the first time I didn't have to add fabric to the side seams.
The tough part, was sewing the hem.  Holy cow, that thing gave me some problems!  I got it done though.  I'm pretty proud of this one. It's much prettier in person.

I do wish I could get my husband to take better photos.....

I did a special technique on the shoulders.  It's fun to wear and fun for others to notice it.

 

I took the fringe ends, and tied knots in the ends of them, then sewed them by machine, onto the back from the front.  This made the shoulders be open.  The photo on the left, the fringe is much longer than the photo of the right.   Again, photographer could have gotten better shots.

I've been doing some spinning also. I started some mixed BFL, which is lovely.  No pic right at the moment.

I've also been dyeing fleece.  I bought 2 of these really nice BFL/Wenslydale fleeces from a wonderful shepherd on Facebook.  The fleeces are really soft, and crimpy, and make pretty lock spun yarn.
Fleece:

Isn't it gorgeous?  Since it comes straight from the sheep, it's dirty.  It has hay bits, grass bits, and dirt.  Hey, sheep live outside, what do you expect?  Though I have to say, this is some of the cleanest fleece I've ever gotten.

I did dye some of it.  Here is the yarn I spun from what I dyed.  I didn't do a good job on the dyeing and the colors are sort of pastel.  More so than I like.  Supposed to be purple, gold and teal.
 

However, it is a really pretty yarn. I haven't washed it or set it yet, so these photos are the unfinished yarn.

I also did some solar dyeing.  I did gold (yeah, I love this gold color) and spruce.  However, I felted the gold fiber.  I will have to use it in another project, and dye some more of it gold.

I can hardly wait to dive into this and spin it!

I have lots of other fiber that is commercially prepared, which also needs to be dyed.  That will come.  This solar dyeing is quite fun.  It has to be quite hot out, and I have to leave the jars in a black plastic bag, for 2 days.  The variations in the dye taking to the fiber is fun too.

Well, that's about all the news I have for today.  Time to go to the gym (yuck).  Have a great day and I hope you enjoyed all the photos.

Martha


Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Standstill? Slump? Redirected Energy?

It could be any of the above.....I haven't wanted to weave, or sew rope bowls, or much of anything else. I have, however, worked on getting a website - well - sort of.  I went to Word Press (I know, shame on me for turning my back on Blogger).  I paid for a .com - but I find Word Press SO difficult to deal with. I feel like I go in circles, trying to get to the page I need to blog from, only reaching that after about 30 minutes of going in circles.  It's NOT my favorite place to play.  I like Blogger SOOOOO much more.  More better.  Better.  Whatever.

I really WANT to get back to weaving. I want to finish my black and white Tencel on cotton and make a shirt.  Or a tunic.

I'm in a slump because I'm trying (I REALLY am!) to lose weight.  I'm moving more. I'm eating a LOT less.  Yet, here it sits, on my legs, belly, butt, boobs, and well, generally, all over my body.  Almost 2 weeks now, and I've only lost 2 lbs.  My weight keeps fluctuating.

Back in 2007, I lost about 40 lbs over 5 months.....then commenced to have a major heart attack and died.  Thank God, my husband had gotten me to the hospital (rural living means you KNOW the way to the hospital, but there's no guarantee that the Paramedics will know the way to our house in less time), before I actually died.  The hospital personnel brought me back to life.

Since then, I have struggled with energy, stamina, and weight gain.  I do blame some of it on the fact that I was also going through menopause at the same time.  Then, in 2011, I had to have a hysterectomy - which of course, slowed me down even more.

So what's a woman to do?  I'm missing all the chocolate, sugar, and biscuits I was eating, and yet, I'm NOT losing weight. I'm not eating potatoes, or rice.  No bread.  No sugar.  I just can't figure it out.

I'm upping my water intake to see if that helps.  If it doesn't and I continue on in this manner, the doc and I are going to have something to talk about!

Today we did go to a local lavender farm.  It wasn't huge, and it wasn't anything like what you've seen in photographs of rows and rows of huge lavender plants that are just purple everywhere.  This is a small, local farm.  Nicest people.  The teenagers were helping out and they were very sweet, and the young man knew his stuff about lavender.

Here are some of the photos.  ©Martha Manigross

Butterfly on Lavender.
©Martha Manigross
 They had bunnies.  This one LOVED being fed the clover from outside the pen.  It was my favorite.
©Martha Manigross
This yellow butterfly kept flitting away if I got too close so it was difficult to catch a good photo.  I love the gold on the lavender though.
©Martha Manigross
 See the bee in the flower????
©Martha Manigross
Can you see the black and yellow bird?  I think I need to get a better distance lens for my camera.  Hubby will be SO happy to hear that - NOT.
©Martha Manigross
Maybe well go back next spring. Did you know that most lavender is harvested by the end of July?  Yeah, me neither!

Till next time, take care.
Martha