Crazy as a Loom

Saturday, July 31, 2010

And the winner is...........

First, let me say that I try to reply to questions with an email, but sometimes, your email address isn't available.
I could answer them here, if I remembered. Which most of the time, I don't.
But someone did ask me about rewoven rugs, and if I washed them. The answer is no. I direct the owner of the rugs to wash them before they send them on to me. Seems simpler, and appropriate to have them wash their own rugs.

The stray cat continues to come up on the porch every day to eat. He doesn't look, or act, feral to me. He doesn't run from me, unless I get too close. Then he scoots off the porch.
When Kismet's mother was around, she was truly feral. If she even caught a glimpse of me, or heard a sound, she was gone so fast, there wasn't even time to take a picture. This little guy/gal, is just plain scared. Someone has abandoned him, and who knows for how long.
From studio

He is mostly tiger, but has white boots.
I think he was talking to me here.
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I make sure to leave water out for him. He needs more than food.
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I will admit to you that I have accomplished almost NOTHING today. I have a miserable cold. WHO has a cold in the summer, I ask you.
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This is the new colorway for "Table Dancer" placemats........when I am so inclined.
And when I feel up to it, these loopers need to be fetched from the drying racks in the yard.
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But honestly, this is the way I feel right now......
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And the result of the drawing for the first large potholder loom.........whose name I have yet to choose......mostly because there were SO MANY fantastic suggestions.........IS: (drum roll)

Please email me with your name and address, and as soon as I get the first 24 potholder looms, yours will go right out to you.
I must tell you, it might be a week or so, before they are ready. But the first one is YOURS.

And that, my friends, is all 'she wrote' tonight.

Friday, July 30, 2010


When I went to Middlebury, Vt recently, I did some shopping in the Food Co-op there, it is my favorite. I bought some beans to sprout.
I had a sprouter, but honestly, a good old Mason jar is your best bet.
I put some mung beans in a clean jar. (and threw the fancy dancy sprouter in the garbage can)

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I covered the beans with water, and let them set for 8-10 hours.
Note the screen and the rubber band on top. (I knew that broken screen would come in handy if I kept it long enough)
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I rinse them twice a day, and set the jar on its side, shaking it a bit to distribute the beans as evenly as I can between rinses.
Day 3.......delicious bean sprouts that I eat like they were peanuts. Rinse them, and store in zip lock bag in fridge.
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They do not last long.
I got mung beans, and lentils. They are both lovely in salads, in a wrap, any way you want to eat them. They are incredibly cheap, easy, and much fresher than the ones you pay big bucks for in the grocery store.

I am sitting on my sofa, the sun is about to set. The window is open, and there is a lovely evening breeze. It is quiet.
Still. Quiet. Very unlike my house this time of night.
DH is at some political dinner, and the TV is.......................HORRORS.............OFF!
Will I go to hell in a hand basket, as I have been warned my whole life? Sitting in the quiet, just the sound of Eddie occasionally licking his lips on the couch next to me (dinner must have been good, eh Ed?)
I love the stillness. I have always loved it, even as a kid. Noise is good sometimes, TV is good on occasion, music is wonderful. But nothing, nothing, is as soothing or as sweet as silence. IMHO.
It has been a long, exhausting week. Lots of commotion, lots of noise, commitments, time restraints, kid restraints. And the grand finale, a summer cold.
So yes, tonight, the quiet is like an old friend, come to linger.
I am filled with gratitude tonight. My dear friend, Penny, has just come through a harrowing medical procedure in Boston, with wonderful results. Thank you, God. She has been on my mind all day, and finally, the phone rang,(a WELCOME noise) and it was her husband with the good news. Hallelujah. She has had a tough road.
And thanks to my friend, Chris, who suggested that I use CARDBOARD.......yes, cardboard, between my placemats, instead of fabric strips.......and besides what other great uses are there for Priority Mail boxes?
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These crazy, colorful placemats I am making have sparked my imagination. At first, I called them Fiesta placemats, until the OTHER HILARY said, "oh, how about TABLE DANCERS".......placemats made from socks.....Table Dancers, oh, my......I LOVE IT.
So that is what they are. Some names just reach right down into your head and say YES.
Like Caterpillar Rugs.....perfect.
I guess if I were motivated, I would be putting a Trademark or something on all these things. If I were. Sounds like a lot of trouble to me.
Much more fun to just weave up a roll of them.
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The colors just happen. Serendipity. Spontaneity. Let it be.
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To my way of thinking, you can just spend too much time trying to control everything around you, when the reality is, if you are just quiet.......... the right color, the right name, the perfect idea.............will come to you in time.
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I believe that.

Thursday, July 29, 2010


I don't often wind a warp by hand. I am so geared to warping sectionally, and I have gotten pretty efficient at it, so using the warping board kind of makes me shiver.
But because I was not into dragging the equipment home to my Baby Wolf, and I didn't really have time to wind all the spools I would need, I bit the bullet and wound my towel warp on the board.
If you have done that, you know that sometimes those little spools roll around the floor, and make you want to swear, or maybe they DO make you swear.
Anyway, a while back, this old guy who used to work at a local (now closed) textile mill, brought me some stuff he had kept from it.
This was one of the things he brought me.

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Now when he gave it to me, it was covering a big cone of thread, and it actually turned and locked on the spool. But I decided it might work for these.
So I put it over them.
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There is a little sponge thing inside it, that the thread goes through first, and then up through the hole. And it worked like a charm. No little cones rolling around the floor, attracting attention from the kitties who 'stalk' me.
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And the warp went on nicely.
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Then it was time for the grandchildren, at least 3 of the 4. They swam in the pool, and frolicked in the hot tub.
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Has anyone ever figured out why Mimi's/Grammy's by whatever name, get so goofy about this next generation?
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Can anyone tell me how suddenly you are struck by lightning all over again?
And here is my Eddie, in his favorite spot by the window. He is in charge of our street, don't ya' know.
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I am goofy over him, as well.
Maybe I am just goofy.
It's been said.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Drawing the line.

Nothing like a 6 year old to reaffirm one's age.
Holy moly.
Here's my tale of woe.
I can claim being tired, oh yes, I can.
I had this tattered rug that needed to be taken apart, and rewoven on a brand new warp. A bright white warp.
So I did it, put the bright white on the loom, took the rug apart, and wove it anew. With one slight problem. When I put the finishing header on the rug, I grabbed the wrong shuttle, and it was OFF WHITE.
When I put it down on the floor, it jumped out at me. I stood there and looked at it for a couple of minutes, sighed deeply, picked it up, and cut the header off, and tore the rug apart, again.
I wove it again, this time I made sure there was only ONE shuttle near the loom.
From studio

I will mail it out tomorrow, only a day off schedule.
And what is in the air???? Everyone is getting out old, raggy rugs, and they want them rewoven.
Don't get me wrong, I love old rugs, but they can be a challenge.
From studio

Taking them apart is tedious.
Old rugs like this one are made of very narrow strips of fabric.
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But after all the work, their charm is unmistakable.
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After Sydney showed up in the barn, last September, my husband said "you have to draw the line."
Of course, I am not entirely sure where the line is, and I am not sure I am so inclined.
This little one doesn't understand about lines. He is not feral, but he is sure scared.
From studio

When I saw him/her eating bugs off the walk, I decided some food was in order.
It seemed to hit the spot.

I loved all the names you left in your comments for the potholder loom.
I do have ONE prototype that I have been playing with, with 2 dozen in the works.

From studio

That being said, I am going to push the drawing up to Saturday, to give more people a chance to leave a comment.
But I am going to tell you, weaving on it is somewhat addictive. But you knew I'd say that, didn't you?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Name a loom, and a giveaway

Ah, a cooler night for sleeping. That's what I'm talking about.
The string of hot nights, and hotter days, has been exhausting.
I know I shouldn't complain. Winter will be here soon enough.
My granddaughter is here all week, going to summer day camp for horsemanship. She is very excited. Oh, to be 6 yrs old, at horse camp during the day, and spoiled by your doting Mimi the rest of the time.
I am so busy this week, so far too busy to even pick up my camera.
So you will have to make do with Sydney Sue.
From studio

I have to tell you, this girl has a list of people who would take her home in a heartbeat.
Imagine that.

I am trying to be patient, waiting for the prototype for this new potholder loom. I want to experiment with it a bit, make sure it suits me, before I go ordering a barn full.........ha! (I just said that for DH's benefit)
I have been planning the packaging of it. Probably a gusseted plastic bag that you can see through, with a folded piece of card stock over the top. I want to 'brand' on the side of every little loom. I have been told that I jump too far ahead of myself (who said that?), but in my head, it is just good business to lay the groundwork of what you are doing next.
I am trying to think of a "name" for this little loom, something to put on the header tag, besides my 'Crazy as a Loom' logo. My husband suggested, "Here we go loop de loop loom". Good grief, can't we find a LONGER name?
I said I am going to ask all my blogging friends to do some brainstorming. I need something catchy, something other than 'potholder loom', which to me is somewhat limiting. Yes, you can make lovely potholders with this loom, but that being said, those 9" squares can be sewn together to make lots of other things.
So, "Crazy as a Loom __________________"
I should be coming up with this, but I'm not.
Help me out people.
And a giveaway, which of course is..........drum roll.............a blankety blank potholder loom! With loopers!!!
All you have to do is leave a comment, and suggest a name. The giveaway is not going to the name I choose,(that person will just have bragging rights) but will just be drawn from a basket of mother, the official drawer of names will preside, and I will draw it Wednesday night at 8pm.
Hopefully, I will get my camera out tomorrow........lest you start calling me 'slacker'.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Little of this, and some of that.

Remember the fiesta skirts? Oh, dear, I think I may have to make more. Everyone wants one, you see. Even my 'grown up' friends. Can you imagine?
I couldn't resist this little Barbie pair of made a sweet skirt.
This one is going to Atlanta, for my friend's granddaughter.

From studio

Who said 'fiesta' had to be red???
Not me. Either that or I need to come up with another name.
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I am loving these placemats......they are thick and sturdy and substantial. And of course they wash well, they're SOCKS. Ha! That cracks me up.
I was thinking of calling them "Socks/feet on the Table".
Just kidding.
On one of my recent trips to a random garage sale, I found this purse, a leather Franco Sarto in light salmon. I LOVE it. I paid $2.
I love that even more.
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UPS freight arrived today, at the end of my driveway, they couldn't/wouldn't drive in. Backing in was out of the question.
So the boxes, 16 of them, 80 lbs each, had to be unloaded at the end of the driveway. I had a student there, she was weaving placemats. She graciously offered to help. We unloaded them together, and with the hand truck, we moved them all up the driveway, and into the barn.
Oh, yeah. It was raining the whole time.
Ah, the power of women.
Now for a cuppa tea.
From studio

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A blast from the past.

I have been experimenting with placemats made out of sock waste.
Trying to find my mojo if you will.
Wanting to take them off the loom, tie the fringe, set them out to take a photo, and say, "AHHH."
So first I came up with these.
They are made with the scarf waste from Solmate socks, and have a lot of black in them.

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OK, but they didn't really move me.
Second, I used the heel strips to make these with the fringe-y sides.
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And third try got me these.
Made from the toe clips or loopers that you get when you sew the end of the sock, and cut the waste off.
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These are my favorite, hands down. I call them 'fiesta placemats'.
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Now if you've been reading my blog, you probably already know that my brain is cranked up on high most of the time. Sometimes that is exhausting, but other times, it rewards me with a lot of creativity.
I recently was puzzled about what to do with my thousands of pounds of sock loopers. I sold some to other weavers, and that was good. But if my husband is right, and occasionally he is (please don't tell him, I have to live with him, ya know) I will not live long enough to weave all the stuff I have.
So I got to thinking. Surprise!
Remember the potholder looms that were around when you were a kid? Well, they are still around. Mostly made of plastic, they make a small, pretty flimsy, potholder.
From studio

The loopers I have will not work on this small loom, they are too big.
So I am working on getting a prototype for a bigger potholder loom, one that I can market as a kit, with all the vibrantly colorful loopers that are in the Solmate sock rugs.
Here are some of the larger potholders made on a 9" loom. I think you will agree with me....they are gorgeous.
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If you are interested in being one of the first ones to try it out, be sure to let me know. I am starting a list.
The potholders are thick and substantial. You can weave one with NO previous weaving experience.
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And now, I am crashing, which is sometimes what happens when I cruise along at those high speeds.
It is called 'being a couch potato'.
I know, I need more practice.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Maybe I should take more time off. It seems to have lit a fire under me. I got so much done today, it's scary.

First of all, I finished a stair runner. It is just lying over my own stair runner so I could take a picture of it, now my old one looks boring to me......I want THIS ONE.
Not really, it belongs to a customer.
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I spent a lot of time finding, cutting, winding all the fabric for this runner, but when I started weaving it, I was glad, because it went so much faster.

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My newest rugs: sherbet rugs.
The soft pastel colors remind me of the colors of sherbet.
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I had a lot of fun taking pictures of them in progress.
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These rugs are bumpy, but soft and cushy.
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They look like sherbet mountains.
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As much as I love the bright, vibrant colors of the Solmate sock rug, these pastels are a breath of fresh air.
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Oh, my, I am having so much fun.

Welcome to my world.

Because every thread counts

Because every thread counts