Craft House Reflections

Well, the Craft House has come and gone and it went pretty smoothly. We ended up with four crafters, Trish with doggie treats and gift baskets, Laurie and her daughter with a really nice variety of things like waxed leaf firestarters, sheepy ornaments, knitted scarves, decorated frames, and beaded jewelry. My neighbor, Barb, brought a bunch of crocheted scarves at the last minute. The younger kids had the brownie jars and cocoa stuff and worry doll pins. In addition to the scrubs, salts and lip balms, I finished painting quite a few springerle ornaments, several pin cushions with shrinky dink pins and dyed bunches of roving.

About 7 or so people from town that no one knew stopped by. That was encouraging especially since we didn't do a ton of advertising. At least one expressed that they really liked the idea. A number of friends and neighbors stopped by. That was really key. Looking back the success of something like this depends on frihttp://beta.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gifends both their coming and bringing some of their friends. Since I was the only one from Phoenixville, it was overwhelmingly my friends that came. A bigger group of crafters more centered in Phoenixville would have brought more people.

Still, everyone had a pleasant time. The house was filled with friends and laughter. The kids learned a lot (!) and we all managed to make a little money. I personally would really love to do it again in March with spring things and baby things. We'll see. In the meantime, we have lots of scrub and salts and lip balm and if you receive one as a Christmas gift, please don't look on them as leftovers because the intention all along was let's make these for Christmas gifts and make lots extra to try to sell.

And, this picture may make it onto Etsy.com this week as I try out that venue for selling.

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Spinning Wheel Tune-up

Upon moving my Ashford traditional out of the living room and into the dining room taking the place of my daughter's easel (which has moved up to her room), I noticed that everything was, well, how should I put it - shaky. The wheel itself looked like it just might fall apart. The spokes were loose and the hub was coming apart as well. After admonishing my son for not keeping his hands off of it and hearing tales of other children wildly spinning the wheel unsupervised, I went to the google and found this page. My very question of how to repair the wheel spokes and hub was answered, although it took a pdf (found on the ashford site) of how to put one together in order to figure out how to take it apart.

There is a pin in the hub that must be pulled out (we used a pliers) and then you may pull out the shaft, and lift out the wheel. Upon doing this, all you need is a little wood glue and a clamp or two. Wait 30 minutes or so and reinstall. Here's a note though, make sure that the drive band is positioned correctly when you reinstall the wheel. If you don't do this, you may have to take the whole thing apart again to get the drive band on correctly. Take a wild guess as to why I know this!

We (Julius was my eager assistant the whole time - he is going to be such the engineer) then oiled it up, realigned the wheel and the bobbin drive, and tightened some screws. I think it'll be ready for a spin (yes, pun intended) tomorrow evening!


Wool for the Craft House

I've been doing some dyeing this week and last for the Craft House. There are a couple of spinners that might stop by and a number of Waldorf parents who live in the neighborhood, so I wanted to be ready. I also took some skeins of hand-spun yarn and labeled them for sale. I don't think I'll get more yarn done, but I have a few more batches of roving to dye. Dyeing is so much fun. I love playing with the colors to see how they turn out. Having a background in science I know that I should be keeping a notebook with all the concentrations of dyes and how I mixed the colors, but I'm not. That'll have to be a project when there are more than 24 hours in the day! If they don't sell at the Craft House I might just have to get one of those Etsy shops going.


Curves Crafting

Last night we delivered and set-up our craft table at our local Curves. Erin separated each of her 42 jars of pre-orders into boxes for each person with an itemized receipt. For those who ordered $40 or more she threw in a Cocoa Heaven for Two. On Saturday we (all the kids helped with this) also prepared many jars of salts and scrubs. Add to that the lip balm and our table was pretty full! On the silver tray are testers (hopefully people will limit their opening of jars to those). We put together little stand-up flyers that tell people about the products and under the table there is some extra inventory. We'll see how it goes for the rest of the week and then next week is our Craft House.

(This post is a duplicate from fieldlearning.blogspot.com)


Highland Dance Socks

I was meaning to post these at some point anyway, but here they are specifically for Karen at the dance.net forum. Erin's Highland Dance Hose. I used Jameison and Smith lace weight (2/14.5) the purple is L44 and was very hard to find the right color. It goes with her Dress Cunningham kilt. I used a one ply cobweb with the purple to make the marl and although slightly thicker than the solid color diamonds, it is really not distinguishable to someone unless they are a knitter. The stripes were duplicate stitched on top. And yes, if you look closely you can see that they aren't perfect and don't always cross exactly in the middle. All I can say is you try to knit these and see how you do!! Seriously, though, you can't tell once they are on and only a knitter would really look at that! I graphed the pattern taking reductions at the seam to get a fitted sock and figured the heel and instep from the Beehive pattern for Highland Dance Socks.

Oh, and I forgot to mention the reason they don't meet diamond tip to diamond tip at the top is that about an inch of growth is built in at the top. So, the cuff comes down over the first diamond to about the mid-point. Again, not noticeably obvious from the stage, but I won't have to be knitting new socks next year when she grows. i can rip out the toe and knit the foot longer if I have to as well. These were all tips I received from another sock knitter.

Here's a close-up to see the marl.


The Kiri Shawl

After 10 months of thinking I was going to keep a craft blog, I finally have my first real post. Well, really it is mostly pictures, but here is the Kiri Shawl with my handspun angora/merino. I love how soft it is and the little haze the angora gives it. I was pleased with the variegation as well. (Is that a word?)

And then my daughter and I tried some dyeing with plants. This yarn was spun with a merino roving treated with alum and dyed in a long goldenrod dyebath. We also did some with a short time in the bath and it is brighter. I wondering what to ply this with. A purple, a green, a blue, maybe something that keeps changing colors?


A crafty blog

Coming soon...a crafty blog.