Bindesjal is kicking my butt.

Not one:

but two:

reversals of direction. I guess that is the downside of knitting from a recipe rather than a pattern. Sigh. However, it’s a pretty easy knit – but not boring so really, it could be worse!

 

Edit – ok – I just realized that second pick was a bad one, because it doesn’t really look like the tail is pointing in the wrong direction. Trust me – what should have been the pointy part of the tail was, in fact, reversed so it pointed into the body of the shawl.

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On the needles

Two really cool things are happening at Flannelberry these days… We have been playing with Botanical Colors dyes:

Now that I’ve got a sense of these amazing dyes (I’m using the Aquarelle) they’ll be going up on the site.  I didn’t want to list them before I had played with them. Let me say I love them. They’re as easy as any of the acid wash dyes and oh my goodness! The colours. Stunning.

The other news is that we have more Little Red Bicycle heading north to us and it looks like we’re going to be the lucky ones to carry a new line of yarns from an indie dye collective. Way too exciting.

Oh yeah – and on the needles is this:

This is a recreation of a shawl from a Denmark Museum – well, it’s the bottom border of what will be a shawl. I’m a bit intimidated by the recipe but love knitting historical items and I really love supporting anyone who takes the time to unravel the mystery of these old items. If you want to join me in honouring this masterpiece, you can pick up the pattern on Ravelry.

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A quick lesson in rigid heddle weaving…

So… I was working on a weaving today yesterday and realized… I have something to share with you.

So first of all let me begin by saying that the original post of this just vanished into the ether when I tried to post- thanks WordPress.

Ok – so let me really begin by saying that sometimes you have a friend who knows something you don’t, who no doubt learned it the hard way and is sharing information with you to make sure you don’t have a similar experience (right Frazzle?). And while you listen to that friend and take her advice, you don’t think about it quite enough and you keep having the same problems over and over again. For me that’s been tension on the outer edges (selvedge) of my weaving. This time I doubled the strands in the outer two heddles and eyes of both sides thinking that this might help. Well, it didn’t. Things got sloppy again. So my edges start off fine, end up really tight and then end up too loose. It’s a bizarre problem that made no sense, had no answers and was just a fact of weaving… or so I thought.

First let me say – if you have this same problem and you do things like hang pens or other oddities off those strands to increase the tension, it turns out neither you nor I invented that. It’s called a temple (check out these cool homemade ones). Anyway, that helps but there’s no way that’s the sum total of the solution.

Ok, so I thought that’s just that. That tension issue is part of why temples were invented – because everyone has that problem. And then I was messing around with the current WIP and realized what it is that I’d been missing for so long. It’s the drawing in. The unevenness in my selvedge is why I’m having some tension trouble – I’m sure of it.

So here’s the situation as I see it. When I’m throwing the shuttle, I’m carefulish about the outer edge and throw at roughly a 45* angle but… when my weaving space is getting full, that angle is compromised just due to lack of space. And it’s not quite enough, I’ve realized. What happens is that the edges end up all wibbly-wobbly

Exhibit A.

So that’s my weaving over one session. See how it’s progressively drawing in closer and closer to the middle? Well, it’s not supposed to do that. I can tell myself it’s no big deal or it works out in the end but really it turns out it doesn’t. I’m pretty sure that problem is part of what happens to the tension on those outer edges. Because when I leave it and come back to it watch what happens:

Exhibit B

See how you can’t see the underneath edges? Because I’m allowing for enough weft yarn. I had an epiphany that this is likely tied into the tension problem I have been having. If I can keep the sides consistent, I bet the tension isn’t going to go so crazy. There’s no rhyme or reason to it either – sometimes it’s too loose and sometimes too tight but it’s rarely right!

So how should it look to do it properly? Well, when I was paying attention it went like this:

And then at least this much yarn for the weft:

You might have too much and get these little neps (didn’t get a picture of them). You can easily rethrow that thread or leave them. I think I’m going to incorporate them into the next weaving as a design element – they look pretty cool really.

 

So, I hope this helps someone. I’ll let you know if it makes the next weaving a bit more selvedgely smooth!

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Please bear with me

It’s crazy in my not Flannelberry world, although LG and I had an AWESOME night hanging out and making mini doughnuts so it’s not all drudgery. We have improvements to the site planned, some fun partnerships and all sorts of good stuff that’s destined to roll out in the next couple of weeks.

 

I know… I know… you’ve been waiting for changes to the site. And I need to do a better give away… and I will. Just as soon as life gets a bit of ‘ahhh’ and relaxation. And that’s not this week.

 

Until next week my pretties… I shall miss you!

 

(what I would like to be doing)

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Welcome 2012

So 2012 is here. I know, I know, it’s just a new calendar but I love the start of a new year. It’s so full of possibilities!

 

This year, I have decided, is going to be the year of the sock, for me. 12 pairs of socks, each knit with a different Flannelberry yarn.

I wish you all a healthy, fun and fibre filled 2012.

(Ok, not socks technically but they are felted boots and I will be making more of them)

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So, it’s nearly time

to think about 2012. I know I have been but first I need to get my race to the finish done. And I’m not anywhere near done any of the three projects on my list. I have, however, got my basement cleaned out so that’s a good thing.

 

I have been scheming and planning for 2012 so expect new developments, new sales, updates to the site and stock… I’m really excited about the year and think it’s going to be a grand one.

 

TTFN – I leave you with this bit of cuteness…

 

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The race to the finish for 2011

Cross posted with Ravelry…

 

I don’t know about all of you but I have an inclination to get as many of my UFOs and ready to be started fibre projects done before midnight of 2012.

My list of must do projects are:

Weaving- Throw – in progress, on the loom

Knitting – Scarf – gift for a friend having surgery tomorrow. Cast on but not really started. Needs to be across the province in about 4 days. Haha. Should be interesting.

Knitting – Socks – Gift for FIL. Not started at all.

I also have a felting project in mind and a shawl I’d really like to do. Oh yes, and dyeing as well.

I figure it’s a good deadline to work under and if nothing else, I’ll have a great start on my projects for 2012.

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