Card Weaving, spinning, and a New Member

17 12 2009

First of all, I’d like to welcome Marion Steele to the incubator. She’s a person with considerable costuming and sewing experience, including everything from historical costumes you can talk a kid into wearing to Napoleonic uniform trousers (which there is reason for any female to wish men still wore). She’s also a first year textile student at Norwich University College of the Arts presently working on a project involving card weaving.

This is why, after years of owning cards for card weaving, reading instructions for how to do it and coming up puzzled and thoroughly confused and confounded by the Z’s and S’s and “thread from the back” or “thread from the front” and ABCD’s which, if you believe the Z / S bit, could turn into BACD and ABDC, and so on and so on, I decided to sit down and puzzle it all out once and for all.

If you, too, happen fo find yourself confused and confounded by all this, let me give you a link that actually integrates all these to each other and gave me a clue as to where the heck the threads head from to go through the appropriate holes and where they head to afterwards. Once you read this one, you’ll be able to make a lot more sense of all the rest. Thank you SO much Pam Howard and Weavezine! Ready for it:

I’ve now got a 19-card project going. It won’t be the best card weaving anyone has ever done, but it’s my card weaving, and I’ve got a new skill I reall do understand to add to my repetoire.

I have another one as well, spinning with a drop spindle. I taught myself that one with the help of instructions included with the spindle and roving from Norfolk Yarns

(I will definitely go to them to learn how to spin on a spinning wheel.) And then after struggling for a while, I consulted on twitter with SheepMama

who told me just what to do to get better. It may be a while before I’m drafting as I spin instead of parking, drafting, and spinning in turn, but the results really do pass muster as yarn worth using in a project once I ply it, or maybe even as singles once I research whether that is all right or not and under what circumstances.

Meanwhile, life at the incubator continues as it has been, a few more names on the mailing and contacts lists for classes, lots of wishing us luck, and no sales. I’m hoping that will change when we achieve what I call a “critical mass” of stock to sell. I always knew marketing would be the challenge for me


Pocktorian Textile’s Second Saturday

12 12 2009

At the end of the day, after, what is it now, 12 days of listening to people tell us what a marvelous idea the textile incubator is and how they wish us a lot of good luck, Ruth and I are having a bit of a problem being gracious about it. Because the landlord is not going to accept all the good luck as pay for our space, and because it’s hard to maintain belief in the quality of our work and the prospects of the incubator without selling some things. We were discussing putting out a can with a sign on it saying we gladly accept donations from all those who wish us luck. But maybe we won’t have to resort to that.

I do have some prospective machine knitting students and weaving students and even spinning students (when I can recruit a spinning teacher). And this week, I got my bulky knitting machine up and running, mastered a new method of casting on that is much more consistent than the e-wrap, knitted two scarves, and knitted all the fabric from a snood, which I anticipate being the first project for my students.

And I may finally have made a contact that can hook me up with Norfolk shepherds, so that I can gain access to Norfolk wool and spin Norfolk yarn.

And several other nice things have happened today as well. I may not have sold any of my work today, but really excellent things keep happening day after day after day. Can there be any doubt that eventuallly there will be a way for this incubator to support me?