Fibres West 2014

I finally have some pictures!

But, first a life update (those pics are a few weeks old already anyways!). Working two full-time jobs is just as crazy as it sounds. Just before Fibres West in March, the work to prep was very intense. Packages had to be out the door for delivery more than a week in advance of the show. My next show is Wasoon in Sault Ste Marie May 2-4. I’ve been prepping for Wasoon since I returned from BC. The line up for these two shows is quite different. The farm has been pretty frozen over this year with our late spring. This past weekend was an insane mix of friends travelling in from Victoria BC (great to see you both!), the Maple Syrup Festival in Elmira, and teaching a spinning class in Toronto at Lettuce Knit!

Fibres West was awesome! I had a great time in BC meeting new people and finding an amazingly aware audience for the bast fibres.

Just before the show, I was still drying out the hemp skeins I overdyed. They get a run through the washing machine and a light run though the dryer before I wrap them up again.

I put a 3 ply hand knit hemp sweater into the gallery.

These were the most colourful people of the show! Everything hand-made!

Funny how that’s my goal too! I’m halfway there! This is my hand knit 6 ply hemp sweater.

It was great to meet everyone, and I can’t wait to see you all again possibly in October.

My present work contract ends in April. I’ll be more in touch and up to date after that!

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Made it to BC

I have arrived in BC, and today I will set up for Fibres West! I’m so excited about this show. Brand new linen and hemp fibres to show everyone. More than 50 skeins of overdyed hemp yarns. Piles of overdyed silk and cotton yarns.

I remembered my camera but not my charger… doesn’t matter! I will take pics until the thing expires. Its beautifully sunny here in Surrey BC, I won’t need a flash, and the yarn colours will show up magnificently.

Also looking forward to some knitting/spinning/weaving in the lobby just for the fun of that!

Can’t wait to meet new people, find the Terminal City Wranglers, and put faces to some names I only know from online.

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No Life For Me

All I do is work. Coming onto a month now, and its nice because I finally get paid!!!

I work at the “job” during the day and I come home and work at getting ready for shows and a yarn order at night. Life is quite busy.

I’m very happy with the silk yarn I dyed in a new technique. The yarn colour is dyed in an increasing interval, rather than a regular one. It took me a lot of tries to get things at the right tension to work out. Cotton and hemp are easy, but silk is surprisingly slippery.

I have been spinning. My carder is cleaned out and ready for making new fibre batts on. Two batches of overdyed hemp and dyed cotton are drying (I started with batches of orange and then blue). I am knitting up a hand spun bag of sorts for the guild challenge. I have been assembling my motor for the second swift. I have not yet sold my loom.

I (solemnly) promise to take pictures as soon as I have time, which at this point forward will be know as the time when snow stops falling…

I’m spending too much time of 2014 moving around snow and now ice.

I’m looking forward to the first show of 2014 in March in BC. This is the first year I will be able to attend Fibres West, and I’ll be in it! It has been more than four years now since I was in Vancouver? Wow I can’t remember exactly. I had an overnight layover during one of the Cali trips, but I can’t remember the last time I had enough time to visit friends. :) As soon as I had bought my airfare, I was on the horn making plans!

And every night now, this comes too soon. I must go sleep and dream of the projects I will start tomorrow.

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Loom To Sell

The consequences of having bought another project loom at the guild auction, is that I now have to sell one to make space in my house. Luckily I recently fixed up my first project loom!

I am putting up my newly restored Mira Leclerc loom. It is a 28″ counterbalance loom, you can see the loom diagram here:

I would like $250 for this loom, or I would also consider a trade for a larger counterbalance loom. It is setup in my living room, and can easily be disassembled for moving.

If interested, please contact me at:

I have updated a number of parts, and begun sanding the beams to refinish it all.

It has an 8 dent reed. Also a shuttle, bobbin and reed hook.

I have been thinking that a counterbalance loom would be interesting for dk hemp blankets, and I’m keeping an eye out for a more suitable project counterbalance loom for the studio. For now I like the limitless pattern possibilities of the jack loom, and 20″ wide fabric is probably my skill limit at present. I have made 18″ wide fabric on a rigid heddle loom this far!

I have put together as many parts as I can on my new Dorothy loom. I got nuts and bolts from the hardware store yesterday. The beater bar is the next part to get parts for! The stand is almost ready, the bolts are all sized and tight, the structure itself needs some cross bracing.The loom is tied up in the bird’s eye pattern I had started on the Mira loom.

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9 – 2 – 5

My life for the next 3 months is set – I took a contract back at the uni where I used to work! I finished my first nine to five work week in three years. I walked to work (approx 3 kms, a 30 min walk), except on Thurs morning when I took the bus. I find I’ve had enough of this -15C weather, as well as companies that don’t shovel their sidewalks.

My crafting has suffered a bit because I am running out of time to do things. When I get home I’m also a bit tired! This week I have 3 guild meetings at night which should kill off my crafting this week too.

I finished my first fitted, hand-dyed hemp sock. I gave it a bit of laddering where the 2 circular needles were, but I think a wash will help align things up. Come on summer so I can give this sock a  real workout!

Before I started the job, I finished a sampler project on the new David loom. It was fun learning the ins and outs of the loom with this wee sampler project. I made a waffle weave sample finger towel, and three other people joined me in trying this out and helping warp and thread. I hand dyed the yarn in a skein rather than the warp.

It was fun working on this project and I would like to make a full sized towel now! The pattern was easy to follow once I got into the rhythm. I can see on this sample that I made only one row shorter than all the rest! As soon as this wears in it will be seriously absorbent!

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A Few Drifts

We are very close to personal snowfall records in the city. We measure how high the drifts get to the fork of a tree at the front of the property.

And all of this is nothing compared to the snowfall up at the farm! The farm falls within the snowmaggedon area of Ontario. The winds this year have been extraordinary and the drifts are getting extreme. We are thinking about carrying around our snowshoes in the car this winter, for the first time ever!

Last weekend I strapped on and walked around a bit to survey the ice storm damage.

And this is me in the snow drift cut through by the snow blower.

There are so many branches down this year. The upside down one is the most bizarre in this grouping.

That is my husband in the background clearing the lane.

The snowmobilers like the weather!

This is the drift by the house, about knee high.

This is the drift by the shed, about chest high! Its impossible to get this cleared without a tractor. This snow will be here till the spring…

I had to stop for a while a take a bunch of pictures.

Another snowmobile, easy to hear them coming.

A few action snow removal shots!

And its only January!

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Snowstorms and Sunshine

Woke up today to loads of blowing snow. Pretty bleak looking day!

Trying to get a shot of the sideways blowing snow without going outside. Didn’t do much better at the front of the house.

Not much sun in the forecast in the next week. Luckily, sunshine in an orange has arrived from Florida in the form of Honeybell Oranges from Chushman’s. Thanks Mom!

These oranges come with a few bibs! They are completely necessary.

Driving on the roads today was pretty slow going. We saw plenty of cars in ditches and at the side of the road in general. Tomorrow we drive around some more and see how tall the drifts are out at the farm. for this I am charging my camera batteries!

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