Friday, 5 December 2008

Almost in ship shape.

A finished inkle tote bag! My auntie ordered these two items for Christmas presents! Weeee!

The inkle strips were woven in about 2-2 1/2 inch strips and then sewn onto a canvas back. I bound all the seams inside with a canvas coloured twill tape.

Close up!

The strap!

And the guitar strap. I still have to sew on the leather ends but the rest of it is all done and lined with some kind of luggage vinyl type stuff:
Hearts off the charts!

Intro to Tapestry Workshop, 2008!

Hello Folks! Sorry I haven't been in for a post in forever! It's been a hectic few months for us here. I had this wonderful tapestry workshop underway. I have been busy busy with Christmas present construction. The hubby got a new job and we found out we have a baby coming! Due June 6th! Wee! So I've had a bit on my mind, but now that the tapestry workshop has come to a close, and I have finished the Christmas orders from both my Aunt and a friend in the horse, I can finally make a few blurbs and show off some pictures.

Here's a few action shots and details of some finished tapestries as well:

A tapestry woven with torn up cloth leftovers from a quilting project!

This one is done entirely with crochet cotton. There's a detail of it below.

This one is done using different wools (likely odds and ends from sweater projects) It's beautiful all in autumn colours.

A little bit blurry because I actually caught her in motion. This one is done using mostly acrylic/mohair blends and is in soft pastels...

Mi amigo Dorothy and her beautiful flowers with sunshine tapestry. She was disappointed with the results but I thought it was quite lovely. She has started another one now and it's looking good too!

A bird in front of the moon done with acrylic yarns...

A few shots of the tapestries alone

Well that's all the shots from the tapestry workshop thus far. I forgot my digital on the last night, would you believe it, so I had to use a disposable. When I get those developed I'll scan a few and post them as well.

Ciao for now!

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Wheeee! Spinning!

Okay! I finally figured out how to use my spinning wheel and I'm feeling like a spinning machine!
Here are some pictures of the results of last week's madness!

The basket of happy, including the current drop spindle adventure, and the spinning wheel accomplishments. Also some early drop spindle efforts including: Airo/Fluffy two ply (grossly under spun), Airo two ply, and 200 grams of cabled four ply using Fluffy dyed with grape, orange, and lime Kool-Aid. The super soft stuff at front and center is a two ply, bulky, 100% angora bunny sample.

100 grams of Thunder in a bulky two-ply. I did this first as a practice on the wheel because Thunder's is a lesser grade fibre.

Next I sun up some of Fluffy's fibre that I had already dyed with Tropical and Strawberry Kool-Aid, and plied it with some long, fine black fibre that a lady gave me early this spring. I achieved the variegated look by spinning a solid colour single and plying it with a single that I alternated in sections bewteen the black and the colour. The sections spun out to about 1.5 meters in lenth. When plied the wool alternates 1.5 meters of solid colour, and 1.5 meters of color/black candycane stripe. Sorry, I am explaining it as best I can but I still lack a great deal of spinning language! Each skein weighs 100 grams.

I've been spinning Airo's fibre right from the lock His fibre is soft and fairly fine, about 4 inches staple length. I guess I decided to spin from the lock because My carder is old and annoying. The carding cloth needs to be replaced something fierce. All I want to do is get some more time on the wheel so I just grabbed some of his fleece straight from the bag and went to town. I am really quite thrilled with the end result. It's a fairly fine two-ply. I am trying to spin as finely as I can because I would really like to get some lace weight spun up in time for Christmas, but I am learning quickly that I think my wheel lends itself better to spinning a bulkier yarn. There is only ratio? And I find the finer I try for, the more I have to kick that pedal like crazy in order to get enough spin in my singles. Again, each skein is 100 grams. I have a grand total of 600 grams that I am spinning up this way.

And here's an inkle weaving in progress shot. This is the guitar strap that my auntie commissioned for a Christmas present. It's done with dark royal blue, turquoise, navy and white. I will post a shot of the finished product ASAP.

Well phew! This posting photos business with dial-up proves to be a challenge every time, but it's worth it in the end. The real downer is that it's hard to get motivated to post when it sucks away the whole morning trying to get the images up.

Hugs all around I hope what's left of the autumn treats everyone to great weather!
Cheers n' beers!

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Fat and sassy Murphy Brown...

I went out into the pasture a week and a half ago and took some more photos of Murphy and his mates. Murph looks fat.fluffy and super healthy. He is getting tall too! He's even grown a bit since I took these. Anyhow, here they are for your viewing pleasure:

Murphy and his mum (Honey)...

Cutie pie...

Hangin' with the posse...


Murphy close up...

Fluffy(not so fluffy at the moment) and I think that's Chantal behind him...

Okay so that's three posts today! Sorry about the size and quality of these images, but there were so many...and I still have the dial-up blues.

Hope you had fun! I'll try and post once more near the end of September with an update in the spinning/knitting and tapestry departments!

Ciao for Now.

Boreal Mixed Media Arts Jam 2008

This year's Boreal Mixed Media Arts Jam was a huge success! I taught a tapestry weaving drop-in workshop over the course of two days. Just the basics and a whole lot of experimenting with texture and color! Here are a few action shots:

Everybody did something different and it was such a treat to wander around the table and see so many discoveries being made! Thanks to all the folks who came and joined us at the Boreal Jam!

Hearts off the Charts!

Blueberry Festival 2008

Hello! Here's a picture post of my booth at the blueberry festival! I was the hat lady this year. If you see anything you like or if you have questions you can e-mail me at:!
Newsboy caps:

Fair Isle baby toques:
Two-tassel piggy tail hats:

Peruvian stripey hats:

Cheers and Beers!

Thursday, 7 August 2008

Woohoo! I have pictures!

Finally we have batteries in the camera! Here's a few pics of the Alpacas that I took when I wrote the pictureless update, and I threw in a few shots of some of the hats I have been knitting like a madwoman.

This is Marlo:

Remington(sorry these seem a bit blurry):

The Murphinator about three weeks ago:

Honeybunch and Murph (about three weeks back) with Marlo and Remington in the background:

Here are two 200g bags of fluff that I dyed using pine cone (left) and yellow onion skin (right):

This is a heart and cross-bone fair isle hat that I knit up for a friend. I love that the tassels look like two piggy tails:

More two tassel hats with variegated stripes instead of fair isle (for the Blueberry Festival booth):

And these hats will have pom-poms on each of the four cast off edges at the top. I am already finished the blue one and have started the orange and rust one:

Okay folks! Sorry I haven't been online or posting at all in any of my blogs but my head is spinning, and I just can't seem to find the time or energy to even switch on my computer most days. Hugs and Love.

Friday, 1 August 2008

Another update

Sorry folks! Still no pictures to show off.

I am super busy getting product made for the Blueberry festival in three weeks as well as preparing some tapestry samplers and frame looms for the workshop I am putting on at this year's Boreal Mixed Media Jam. There will definitely be a few picture posts made in September once all the manic panic dies down.

Things are happy in Murphy land. He is now out in the pasture with his mum and all the rest of the alpacas, and I have stopped trying to force him to take the bottle. He is gaining weight and growing softer and fluffier by the minute. I will try to get over to the pasture to take some photos now that we finally have some more batteries in this house!

I have been picking Saskatoon berries like crazy out here. They are just dripping off the branches and hanging in clusters like grapes. Some of them are as big and purple as blueberries. It's bowlfuls of happiness. :)

Also we just finished making about 140 lbs of sausage with homegrown beef garlic, salt and pepper. Pops in law even smoked some of it and I haven't had a chance to try it yet but I hear it's super good. September with be time to butcher chickens. Yick. My favorite time of year. Plus we'll have to start thinking about what to do with all the produce from the garden. I don't really know where we are going to come up with all this freezer space!

Anyway, August is a busy month so I may not get around to making a post again until Sept rolls around, but in the meantime I wish everyone a fantastic summer.

Cheers n Beers!

Sunday, 13 July 2008

Quick Pictureless Update...

Hey folks!

Well I went outside this morning to take a few pictures of Murphy and the two yearlings, Remington and Marlo, and just as I was heading in to post them my batteries died! I will have to pick up some more in town tomorrow and make a second post later in the week. I am really bummed out about it, because I got myself all gung-ho to spend the morning uploading photos (it takes quite awhile for me to post a picture update with these dial-up blues). Oh well!

Murphy has had some gashes on his front legs for the past three weeks, and it has been a real gong show trying to get them healed up, but finally, with the help of some antibiotics he is on the mend (we hope). He keeps itching at the wounds with his teeth and his hind claws, so they are constantly re-opening. Otherwise, he is still spunky and healthy. I have a ton of trouble getting him to take the bottle, which to me means that he is obviously not hungry enough. He doesn't show any signs of dehydration, and he is voiding regularly. I feed him only once a day, if I can catch him! He just turned one month old on Friday and already he is grazing and drinking water. Every time I go out to peek at him he has a huge clover flower hanging out the side of his mouth.

That's all the news I will post for now. I'll try to get those pictures up pronto.
Hearts off the charts,

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Murphy's Law!

So Honey was due on the 2nd of June and I have been pacing my house and peering out my window every half hour until 2pm each day, waiting for her to pop out a little cria. I was beginning to think she really wasn’t pregnant even though I could have sworn I saw something kicking at her sides around the 3rd.

Because Honey doesn’t make enough milk, I was worried about the baby getting a healthy start and was bent on getting out there ASAP and feeding it some colostrum and shooting in some vitamins etc. Of course this meant that one or the other of us had to be home at all times prior to 4pm each day.

Well it happens that Hubby and I had to go in to court as witnesses today, which meant that we were leaving Honey alone for at least three to four hours. I had been stewing about it saying things like “That would be just our luck” and “She’ll have it while we are in court, just because we are both gone.”

Uh huh.

So we got back from court around 1pm and, lo and behold, there was a tiny little head poking up in one corner of the pen. It was BROWN!

He is healthy and strong so far, and has bonded with Honey. They croon back and forth to each other and she makes little clucking sounds at him when he gets too far away or when he is trying to suckle. It sounds like an encouragement. He was already dry and fluffy when we got back, which meant that she likely had him just after we left. But I am a happy camper because he is so beautiful, healthy and soft and brown too! I am doing the happy dance because I have a brown alpaca of my very own!

Because of the nature of his arrival, my mom suggested calling him Murphy (Murphy’s law) and then my mother in law speculated that Murphy Brown was the name of a sitcom TV show. I thought that was amusing, and although it was the name of a girl in the sitcom, I have decided that this little cria be dubbed Murphy Brown.

Here are some pictures...

Murphy as we found him:

Murphy with Mum:

Lunch time:

This is an old picture of Murph's Dad, Choco:

And lastly... I hold muh Murph:

Ooooooh soooo cute! I love him!

Okay! Back to my lawn chair to watch them while I knit baby toques for the Blueberry festival!
Hearts off the Charts.