Crazy as a Loom

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

My butt is draggin'.

There is just no other way to say it. Alice and I worked like dogs yesterday, and today, and I am sooooooooo tired.
We had to dig up some fierce burdocks just to get in the door to the loft. Then we moved a rock that stopped the door from opening wide.
The stairs up there are steep!
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The site at the top of the stairs was enough to make anyone sane turn right around and go back down.
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But Alice and I are 'just' crazy enough to tackle this mess.
We found all sorts of goodies.
An antique corn planter.
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Some old sleds.
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An old buck saw.
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This little item, that I knew was used to slide down a hill, but Alice said it is called a "skip jack".
News to me. Looks like a dangerous way to get to the bottom of a snowy hill.
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Some old andirons, and some loom parts: a cloth beam, a sectional beam, and the castle. These, btw, are free to anyone who wants to pay shipping......they came off a Cambridge 45" loom by the Reed Co.
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We found this, but neither of us knows what it is. Anybody???
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My barn was a carriage house, which is why it is so close to the house. They stored hay up here in the loft, thus the holes all the way around the barn, to ventilate it so the hay wouldn't catch fire.
I just noticed the writing on the wall in this photo. Who knew??? I never saw that while we were up there. I will have to investigate it tomorrow.
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This was my favorite find of the old piece of leather with cut outs, that a bird used to make a nest out of. Pretty stylin' bird, wouldn't you say??
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This bird didn't have as much pizzazz, and went for a traditional nest.
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We found this removable door, probably used for hay, and we took it off so we could throw stuff down onto the driveway, and not have to negotiate those stairs for every single item.
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Finally, sweaty and dirty, we got it done.
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Ta da. Complete with hammock, for an afternoon nap.
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Monday, June 28, 2010

Have mercy.

Every now and then, I have to clean.
I can't be creative, when chaos reigns.
As much as I hate to admit it, sometimes the studio gets pretty wild.
Lucky for me, my friend, Alice, had some free time.
Together we got some serious revamping done.
Alice cleared everything out of the right side of the barn, made a garage sale pile, a dump pile, and reorganized the stuff to stay.
We moved the whole blue jean processing out to the barn. It takes up so much room, it is messy, and this is perfect.

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Of course, my husband wanted to know what I would do when winter comes.
That's a reasonable question....
My plan is to get enough cut by November, to last me through the winter.
If not, I can certainly haul some into the house on occasion.
But I really like the idea of keeping it all out there. We hung a light over the old desk.....see how we raised it up to a comfortable cutting height? It is always good to have cement blocks handy!
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Alice is the queen of getting things straightened up and categorized.
And I love the fact that she is open to my crazy ideas.
I took my OLD sewing machine, and I do mean old, out to the enclosed back porch, and set up a place to sew the blue jeans.
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Again, cold in the winter, but doable into November. And it will be easy to bring some into the house if I have to.
What this has accomplished is that my 'old kitchen', the room where all the sock rugs are made, has been downsized, and has a brand new look.
The cutting table is clean and open and ready to lay purses out, to put the straps on.
The sewing machine is positioned so that I can sew big bags and hem big rugs, without moving everything to make room.
It is just a more workable arrangement.
And it makes me feel so good, just to look at it.
We also dragged my old Maytag washing machine out onto the porch.
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I love it, but it takes up room that I don't have.
So I think it may have to go.

For now, I have it on the porch.
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What do you think? Should I keep it? Sell it? I hate making that decision.

Here is the dyeing spot.......
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And here is some fabric drying......
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All in all, a busy day. I need to rest up.
We are cleaning the loft in the barn tomorrow.
Ay yi yi.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Hear me sigh.

I change like the weather.
One day I am happily weaving blue jean rugs.
Then the dish towel bug bites me.
Today, marked the beginning of more tote bags.
Crazy, wild, colorful.
That's what I'm into this week.

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Big enough for an overnight bag, and big enough for a bunch of groceries.

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I love collecting lots of colors, and weaving them willy nilly, never really knowing what to expect in the end.

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I think this one turned out nicely, don't you?
It's a great way to play with color, and also a great way to use up fabric left over from other projects.

Things are Q-U_I_E_T here.......after a pretty stressful couple of weeks.
DH is recovering.
I am back at the studio doing my thing.
Dyeing fabric in the back yard.
Organizing my stash.
Funny how it took something like this to increase my appreciation of my boring life.
Let's hear it for B_O_R_I_N_G.

Friday, June 25, 2010


One evening, right before our 2nd hospital experience in a very short time, my friend Alice called, and we went for a walk.
Meet Alice.

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She wanted to show me the community gardens that she, and her significant other, are growing vegetables in this summer. At the end of this dead end street that leads to the gardens, there is this house that I couldn't resist. I tried to make it look like I was taking a picture of Alice, but in reality I wanted a shot of "the house that Jack built"......doesn't it remind you of that? An afterthought....oh, hey, let's put an upstairs in this house.

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The gardens were enclosed in a little wooded area, and very undisturbed. Isolated, really, in a maze of neighborhoods.
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I didn't know it then, but years ago, my husband launched a defense that saved these gardens from being used for development.
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He grew up here, so he is very protective of it.
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Just one of his good qualities.
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I think it is marvelous, that people who don't have a yard to garden in, can come here, and for a really NOMINAL fee, can use this space.
You can see, from this shot, how much they love to come here.
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It is true, that we only need a little space to call our own, to make us happy.
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Then we took Eddie for a long walk down by the river.
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I worry about him, he is 13 this July. He has aged so much this past year. But when it is time to walk, fuhgeddaboutit.
He is young for awhile. At least for the first half of the walk. Young in anticipation.
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There are people, kids, other dogs. There is fresh air, so many scents, a dog's dream.
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On the way back home, as the sun was sinking low, I took this shot. It is a neighbor, up on the hill......he is older, recently widowed. His family and friends come by a lot, they probably worry about him being alone. Tonight, one of them is sharing a beer, and a game of cards in this little shed behind his house.
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Gotta love 'em.
Thanks, Alice, for being such a dear one.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Revolting turn of events

Still waters.
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Not a lot of this in my life right now. I am missing it.
This is the path I want to walk down.
Every day.
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But you know, life sometimes has other plans for me.

This week, another unexpected twist............what a revolting turn of events.
My husband ended up in the hospital again...........from 1 a.m. arrival in the ER, to another surgical experience the next day at 4:30 p.m.
Here we were thinking that life was going to calm down after last week. Instead, I feel like we are simulating the Groundhog Day movie, repeating things.
Sometimes, no matter how crazy life gets, you have to keep your serenity some place safe.
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A precious resource.
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Tonight, sitting at his bedside, talking hopefully about a possible discharge tomorrow, I realized that regardless of the place, or the situation, being there for him when he needs me is its own reward.
After all, he is my best friend.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Business, then a princess.

I occasionally put out a newsletter, but I will be the first to admit, it is not my forte. You might notice a newsletter sign up in the upper right hand corner of my blog. I know that it is a good marketing tool, and that optimally, I should send one out every month, or even more often, but I don't.
Maybe I will get the hang of it one of these days.
I'd rather be weaving. Now there's a surprise.
But for those of you weavers who don't get it, I have a few things I am clearing out. Which basically means, that my craziness in creating this stash is a bonus for you.
If you don't can skip this part.......

So briefly:
loopers still $2/lb
selvedges, no choice of color, $1.50 lb, 25 lb minimum
Solmate sock rug kits, enough to make one rug $45.00
Fabric rolls......they are huge......great for dyeing...........$1.50/lb
Oh, and loopers already looped, ready to weave, two loopers as one for a really thick rug, $3.50 per lb
The end.
And if you are interested in knowing more about my occasional cleaning sessions, sign up for my newsletter.....if the link works. And if it doesn't, please holler at me.

Now to something much more fun.

My youngest granddaughter, Ava, graduated from preschool. In a white dress, white socks and shoes, she looked like a little princess.
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I know I am prejudiced, but tell me, is she not beautiful?
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She is also a fan of those wacky little rubber bracelets.
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A tender moment between her and her mom, my first baby.
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Her mom is a lucky lady, but then so am I.
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Welcome to my world.

Because every thread counts

Because every thread counts