Marvelous Linen


Full head shot selfie. These words instill the same dread in me as big deadline or final exam due. I love being behind the camera and focusing, but I find myself taking only 2 kinds of shots in front of the camera; over the top theatrical or lump.

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Great bed head!

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I should smile more maybe? (Nothing is gonna help the guy behind my shoulder though..!)

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Then I thought, ok extensions!

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I can be Goldilocks or Rapunzel and channel my inner diva! And of course, linen is perfect for this. Linen is marvelous!

I want to show the world how amazing this fibre is and what it can do. Yes it is rough, but only at the start. It will not be quite so harsh when it becomes 10 or even 100 year old linen so beloved and cherished in families. But to last, it has to be strong. The fibre has to start strong.

Flax starts as a very delicate and beautiful plant.

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There are 2 basic varieties of flax; plants for seed and (my favorite) fibre varieties. I use Louet Super Fine Flax Top. It has a 12″-18″ staple length which makes it quite a challenge to spin, my drafting zone can be longer than my arms can stretch.

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To help I use a distaff. The one in the right of the picture below is my favorite hand carved antique distaff.

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Spinning on a wheel or with a spindle, try both! Without a distaff there is simply more waste fibre. I started with dry spinning, but much prefer the wet spun product (once I got the hang of it). You can also try using the wet towel method, or blending with different fibres, linen makes the fibre stronger.

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I like linen for many different purposes, so I spin both thick and thin yarns.

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(3 ply handspun)

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Natural fibres are my environmental favourite, but occasionally I love to inject and work with a bit of colour. I’m always practicing that thick and thin!

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I made the 3 colour hand spun yarn in the background to try out handspun linen socks!

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I never have enough, but I can’t help but use my handspun in my weavings.

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I hope you will all join me in 2016 on my path to spin straw into gold, and look good while doing it!

 

 

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Very Sad News


My father in law passed away this past week. The funeral will be on Fri Feb 19 at the Turner & Porter Funeral Home (2180 Hurontario St), visitation from 2-3 pm, wake at 3 pm.

 

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Presto Change-o


I will not be vending at events in 2016. 2016 will be the year of opening my yarn farmhouse shop.

I was pretty sick this summer, and have come to the conclusion that doing too much at once is definitely worse for my health! DH is still in school working on the PhD, and I find that going back to full time work is awesome. And more lucrative than being an artist.

So I am going to become a weekend warrior. We will combine my yarn business which is being reduced down to a hobby scale for 2016, with our hobby, fixing up a 135 year old farmhouse in Arthur, ON.

But the place still needs a bit of work!

It has amazing potential, and I have some one day retreat ideas that I have been discussing with fellow dyers. I am hoping that some time in April we will have more to show people.

For now, here is the place through the seasons.

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Spooky


Dang Camera! Had a time getting it to work.

Ok round two!

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Happy Halloween!

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Fleece Time


Heading to Woodstock for the Fleece Festival to set up today! See you all soon at my last show of 2015!

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My Local Guild Show – The KW Knitter’s Fair – University of Guelph


This weekend I was a vendor at the KW Knitter’s Fair put on by my own local guild. I had an awesome time talking with everyone who came by and seeing people’s projects.

These are the links to the projects we had in the booth this year:

The Amiga Cardigan in silk from Knitty

The Alcina pattern in lace cotton from Rowan

The Spring Lace top in 3ply/fingering hemp (paper copy purchase) from LanaKnits Designs

The Spring Lace top in 3ply/fingering hemp (PDF copy purchase) from Patternfish

Golden Square Shawl

In addition to the patterns we worked on, people also brought their projects from last years yarns! This is the Sabrina shawl made from off white 6 ply hemp by the wonderful Sara.!

We were laughing it up! But I really wanted to get a close up of the details from this green cotton poncho, made with 2 ply mercerized cotton yarn. The stitch detail is magnificent.

After a full day of selling, 3 of us headed over to Sakura Island for sushi dinner. We ordered the large love boat! Getting a good grip on it, bringing it to our table.

And after the devastation…

Just this week at work, I grabbed a friend and we took pictures of the University of Guelph Gryphon. There is a plack:

Such a happy fellow.

He grabbed my hat!

But I showed him my gryphon tattoo and all is well!

Ending with a random picture of a bunny. Usually birds come to eat the seeds!

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Fair Skys Ahead


This weekend its finally time for my local yarn show the KW Knitter’s Fair! Looking forward to seeing everyone this weekend.

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