Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Chickens anyone?

Rumor had it - that there were a few new arrivals just down the road -

Just a few days old - fresh out of the incubator.

I'm like the city mouse, who is just so darn intrigued by all this farm stuff!

Since the only farm I had ever been on as a kid was the pumpkin farm.

I also learned to drag your feet in the grass after leaving the chicken house - possible chicken poop on the shoes!

CAUTION: Weaving can cause - sneezing, itching, rash, mosquito and tick bites!

Sounds fun huh?

Our job for the day was to cut and clear some tress and branches from part of our land. It started out ok, until I got bored with the task at hand. I am the branch picker upper who hauls them to the trailer to be brought to the dump. Jim is the "mess maker", he cuts the trees and branches and leaves them for me to pick up.

After about an hour I started wandering around the woods with a bucket, filling it with an assortment of unique to our property found objects. To the garage I went and returned with a roll of balers twine and scissors. Jim put the chainsaw away seeing that he was going to be beckoned shortly to be my assistant.

"What are you up to now?" he asked. I replied - "I'm building a loom". And so we did.

Quite primitive indeed, but it was fun to make.
The problem now it that I have a rash on my arms, mosquito bites all over, just pulled a tick from my hair and can't quit sneezing. Wow - I can't wait to see what I come up with for an afternoon activity!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Woven Pixel Techniques for Dobby Looms - AKA: You'll be Brain Dead by Sunday!

And this is why we drove to Minneapolis:

ass description:

Woven Pixel Techniques for Dobby Looms
with Alice Schlein
Lift plans will be suitable for straight threadings on 8 or more shafts (16 or more preferred), for networked threadings, or for advancing threadings which conform to networks. Lift plans may also be used on table looms. Participants will learn how to construct and store their own libraries of weave structures, use the many tools and filters in Photoshop to make their own designs, break down the designs into layers and apply the structures, and prepare weave-ready files which may be easily transferred into their weaving program and loom driver of choice. This is a computer-only workshop. No weaving will be done in class. Students must bring their own laptop computers (Mac or Windows) with a weaving program and Adobe Photoshop already loaded. 

Alice brought awesome samples of her work

By Sunday we were all a little blurry eyed and brain dead. This was my first time attending a workshop with this guild - what a friendly and knowledgeable group of friends I have made! Thank you to all.

I did treat myself to both of Alice's books.

Now to begin designing for my 16 and 32 harness looms.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Next stop - find the Textile Building for Friday

The Minnesota Weaver's Guild is located in the Textile Center on University Ave SE.
We decided finding the location of the building will eliminate any stress in the am.

What we were unaware of was the Textile Center was having a Garage Sale on Saturday - and members were in the preparation stages of setting it up. OMG - I have never seen anything like this. And the things just kept arriving - all of the items for sale were donated by the members for a fund raiser.
This is just one angle of the cafeteria - showing the fabric for sale.
Then there was the library with books and magazines for sale.
Equipment for sale lined the hallways - with more being added constantly.
And finally we found our way into the guild store just to say hi and take a look at what was happening in there.

Here are 2 of the rooms filled with looms for the members use.
Checked into the hotel - then Ikea to purchase 2 sheep skins for loom benches in the studio - supper, a couple of Coronas and then to sleep. What a great day!

Heading to Minnesota - with a stop along the way...

With a workshop scheduled through the Minnesota Weaver's Guild Friday - thru Sunday, we decided to leave a day early and make a few stops along the way. First Stop - Roberts WI - the Color Crossing. I had never been there before but had the web address favorited in my browser. Jim asked for an address but I told him we would just know when we were there. He didn't question my directions and he found the building quite easily!

With a view like that from the outside - I knew we were in store for wonderful treat on the inside, and dissapointed we were not! I always feel like a dork taking photos - but always love to share my fiber finds with others - so I asked an employee if she would mind. She introduced me to the owner, Patty who said by all means take photos! The awesome thing than was, that she asked if we would like a tour of the building. Not knowing what to expect - I was overwhelmed by what was in there, to say the least.

The first room that you enter is the knitting yarns, supplies, books and gathering table with wonderfully friendly knitters to boot.

But then you turn the corner and the weaving room was what greeted us next.
At this point - I realized why the word color was in the name of the business!

There were spinning wheels, floor, table and rigid heddle looms of many brands, but also the warping boards and mills, shuttles, winders, dvd's - oh and do you need some weaving yarn? I think she may have what you are looking for!
And around another corner we went - and that's when my jaw dropped. Before us was the Artist's Studio area. Patty explained to us that the area were were entering was rented out by the area artists as their studio working area.
So you rent a space - bring your loom here to live - and create wonderful works of fibery art with others having the same interests. Now how cool is that!

So - I honestly have to say - that if you are in Wisconsin - this is a must stop place to go - there just isn't anything like this anywhere else in the state. I actually had goosebumps as I walked through her shop.