Slow Journey…

We take journeys all through life. It is important to cherish each step of the journey, no matter how long it takes. While that is certainly relevant right now as my fractured shoulder begins to heal yet scream out in retaliation when PT becomes too much, but today, 2/22/22 is actually a really huge mile marker in my lifetime journey. 20 years ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer. Obviously I lived. I had a mastectomy, and six months of chemo, and though I was young, I was determined that this would not be one of those things that defined my children’s journey. My son confirmed that when we went out to dinner to celebrate.

Yes, I actually went out to a restaurant. I needed to do that. To have a Margarita, to be with someone who was there. Who, thankfully doesn’t have haunting memories of that time. He was 12.

And so the journey over the last 20 years has been slow, and often painful, but I always had support along that journey, friends, family, and sometimes people I didn’t even know. We are all on this journey together, as partners on the trip fade into and out of our life, we do not walk alone. So thank you to all of you who walked with me on this journey so far, know how much your support has meant and has kept me going.

I find a shift in my days, now that PT and painful recovery are taking precedent over things I’d rather be doing. I think about what I want to be doing and what I need to do, and sadly they are rarely the same thing. I need to exercise my arm, and I really need to clean my house. I desperately need to sit down and do my least favorite task in the world, taxes. And this past week I did a task that has been at the top of my to-do list for a ridiculous amount of time, partly because I hate doing it and partly because I didn’t know how to do it.

That task was to rewrite all of my class/lecture/workshop prospectuses, to indicate what I’m willing to teach, remotely, and how, and eliminate what I’m not, or can’t see how I can. And since I will take in private students, 1 or 2 at a time, I needed to indicate those workshops, or retreats, and what the expectations would be for a prospective student. Those materials lists were easy. I have most everything here. So each day I tackled more, and edited everything, so if you are a guild, the list is updated and refreshed. See all my class offerings here.

If you are a person interested in studying with me, find all that information here.

And, because I had dismantled my photo set up back in December because I needed the guest room, it had been my plan once Christmas was over to reset the photo equipment and shoot many of the new pieces to add to my website. My fall right before Christmas and subsequent shoulder fracture prevented that, but I was determined to do a photo shoot on Saturday, and so I managed with one and a half functioning arms, to set up all the equipment and do a real shoot of five garments. You can see the three most recent here, getting the positioning of each garment just right, and the lighting, reaching up to ‘zhuzh’ the garment details, was all pretty taxing on my shoulder, but I did it. So that part of the website is updated now. If you want any details on the garments shown here, you can read them on the website. Because it has been updated!

But there are still the taxes… Sigh…

Meanwhile, what I really want to be doing are projects I can sink my teeth into. Projects that will keep me awake at night, since I am anyway. Projects that make me think, steer me in new directions and make me push the envelope.

One of them, which I did manage to spend the rest of the weekend on, was to develop this pile of handdyed skeins into an actual fabric. The skeins were pulled from my stash based on the poster included in a puzzle that I had just finished. I spoke about that in my last blog post.

Because I have a naked 12 shaft loom, which is crying for a warp, I wanted to take my usual 8 shaft yardage draft, and see how many structures I could get using 12 shafts. Turns out a lot. Many of the structures I had used in the 8 shaft could be shifted to existing shafts and I kept having more shafts to work with. I’m really stretching this, heading into uncharted territory, not completely sure this will all work with the yarns I’ve chosen and the sett I am planning to use. But that is the point n’est ce pas?

So I took a small snip from each skein, and sat with software (Fiberworks) and spent hours plugging in colors and structures into a 12 shaft draft, using Fibonacci numbers to determine the width of the stripes of a particular yarn/structure.

I’ll keep you posted on that adventure. There is going to be a lot of cake winding from skeins ahead of me…

Meanwhile, I’m haunted by the possibilities of the Rainbow Double Weave sampler I pulled off the loom last month, after painfully weaving it off with one hand, two shuttles, 40 picks per inch out of 8/2 tencel. Of course my brain only thinks in one direction, all points in a journey lead to clothing. And so I found a remnant of a fabric from a gown I made and wore for two weddings, as matron of honor, which I thought really complemented the sampler.

First though, I couldn’t see myself just randomly chopping up the sampler, I needed a plan. So I scanned the entire 3 1/2 yards, and pieced together all the pages, so I could play around with a paper example of the real cloth.

I cut out all the pieces of a jacket which is a combination of my 800 zippered vest, using the drop shoulder sleeve of the 1700 tunic. I cut them in the wool satin weave fabric from the gown, and for the back side, the wool suiting. I arranged the paper replicas of the sampler all over the pattern sections.

I created a basted border, to allow seaming, and then had a stiff drink and cut out windows for the sampler which would sandwich between the two layers.

Now all I had to do was reverse appliqué both sides, to create a completely reversible garment. ‘Cause you know, the point of double weave is that there are two sides…

Spent most of the last few days hand sewing. The fronts are done, except for removing the basting, which I’m not doing until the rest of the pattern pieces are finished. This one is a really slow journey.

Right now, slow journeys are really appealing. I drop my daughter at the airport Thursday morning, she is off on a Star Trek cruise to points south. There is a lot of anxiety and trepidation on both our parts, we have not really been apart since March of 2020 when we both returned from our travels, her from the cruise in 2020, and me from my last travel adventure, teaching in Oregon. We have not left the dogs, and 10 days without her in the house, will be kind of challenging for not only her dog, but for me.

I have lots to keep my focus, and keep me entertained. The world is changing, and part of my discussion tonight with my son, who is in the military, was about what is happening in parts of the world that seem hauntingly familiar if you have studied history at all. I needed that Margarita.

Stay tuned dear readers, hopefully the journey will continue for another 20 years, and that many of you will continue to walk it with me. There are lots of looms to dress, lots of fabric to be sewn, lots of yarn to be dyed, and lots of ideas to be explored. I love you all!

I’d just hate to call it an addiction…

It’s just that I can’t resist those emails. The monthly ones from Peter Patchis Yarns. The frequent ones from Webs. The one to me personally from a yarn company that shall remain nameless, “Hi Daryl, we are going to discontinue a product line, one we know you like, let us know if you want to purchase what’s left…”

I had even avoided opening the monthly newsletter from Peter Patchis, until a friend on a Zoom call mentioned the great yarns for the month. It is only $6. a pound. Sigh… So after filling up on one of almost every color of Webs 8/2 cotton, on sale for an OK price, and a number of $6. a pound cones from Peter Patchis, and another box from the unnamed company… I sort of panicked. Where the heck was I going to put all this yarn when it came in? I swear there is no room in the inn… And no, as a friend suggested, I’m not renting a storage unit… Can you imagine wanting to know what colors I have in 8/2 and driving to a storage unit to retrieve a couple cones? Absolutely not…

So sitting in the studio, doing odd tasks like winding cakes from my dyed skeins, a boring and tedious task, I’ll get to that in a minute, I just sat looking at my wonderful, incredible, overfilled monstrous space of a studio and it occurred to me that I could move some of the Structo Looms out of Yarn Alley, the alley behind the bookcases, to another location in the studio, and the felting supplies I have for teaching, which I’m not doing, could store someplace else.

In case you are wondering, I have 18 Structo Looms, I believe five are 8 shaft, plus I have 2 of the 10″ wide Leclerc versions of the Structo’s. Those are the greenish ones on the top shelf.

That left the top of the bookcases in Yarn Alley empty.

Which I immediately filled up with all the yarn that came in the past few days. It really isn’t an addiction. Of course I’ll live long enough to actually use it all… Stop laughing dear readers, stop laughing…

In between all that, I took that pile of dyed skeins that I thought would be pretty together, refer to my previous blog, and I lined them up to plan out a scarf warp.

I thought of calling this run “Winter Sky”, because that’s what I saw out my window, January in NJ. But then the title A Winter’s Tale, with a nod to the Bard, popped into my head, and this has certainly been a winter to tell about, what with my fractured shoulder and all, and getting this warp on the loom, especially one I haven’t put 12 yards on two beams before, I earned the title.

So, skeins have to be wound into cakes.

Cakes have to be wound into warps.

Warps have to be sleyed, I work front to back, and had to use an 8 dent reed for my 27epi, because the 9 dent is tied up with the Drunken Squares Warp, which I can’t weave on yet because my arm won’t do a 25″ wide warp easily. Note to self, you need more 9 dent reeds…

Sleyed warps need to be threaded.

Threaded warps need to be tied onto the back apron. Tensioning devices are added…

And the warp is wound. All 12 yards. I did have my daughter help, it really does go easier with two people, though I rarely have that luxury.

And then I had to rig up a way of attaching my sectional box to wind the supplementals onto the lower warp beam. My Leclerc Sectional box does not fit on the second back beam of the Macomber. Weavers are so resourceful.

Everything is now in place, second back beam installed, and I’m ready to tie onto the front.

And the weaving has commenced. I’m loving this warp. Very understated. A true winter’s tale…

Meanwhile, I cleared the Harrisville Warp I put on my small four shaft loom. I was trying out an idea, and threw on five yards. I wove a couple narrow yards with the two skeins of sock yarn I have, sett way too dense for a scarf, which I did on purpose because I was testing for garment weight fabric, and the end result is pretty cool.

I must have screwed up the calculations because I thought one 50 gram skein of sock yarn would do a two yard scarf length, but it took both skeins. So I pulled some small leftovers of mohair I had laying around and wove the other couple of yards. Both are washed, and these will eventually become panels for some sort of garment. I’m mulling over possibilities…

I’m always thinking, always thinking. Nights are the hardest to shut off my head, and especially now because my shoulder constantly aches, and I just can’t get comfortable. So I spend many hours at night just thinking…

I’ve mentioned before that my daughter and I adore fixing puzzles. She purchased a series that she adores, from the Magic Puzzle Company. We were working on one called The Busy Bistro, and I just couldn’t stop thinking about the color relationships in this puzzle. They were gorgeous. I spent many hours at night just thinking… And I have all this dyed yarn.

So I took the poster from the puzzle box and started pulling color groups, lining them up in the apron of my 12 shaft loom, which I got, new to me, last Mother’s Day.

I’m determined to get a warp on this before this Mother’s Day, it cries every time I walk by it, “Warp me, please…” I’m basing this on a fabric I did before, except I want to expand some of the design areas, to include an additional 4 shafts. This is the fabric I wove years ago, probably 10, and made a tunic out of it. It was 8 shaft. Now I have 12 to play with.

I’ll move yarns around and eventually start snipping samples on a draft, and see what I get.

Meanwhile, I found fabric to use with my 3 1/2 yards of the Rainbow Double Weave sampler I painstakingly wove off right after my accident. Of course this fabric was on my shelf, and there is a story behind it, but that story is for another day. First I want to see if this will work… Everything is hanging up to dry, and I’m loving the palette.

And finally, I got a large envelop from the US Government earlier in the week. And this just made me smile. Back when I developed the YouTube channel, and came up with the name, The Weaver Sews, and had my daughter help me with a logo, I thought it would be beneficial to have it trademarked. What a process. After a couple of rejections for technical reasons, I failed to read the unreadable directions properly, I managed, after a year and a half, to procure a real trademark document. Perseverance, a typical trait of most handweavers, paid off and I’m official.

Spring is coming, and I got out for a walk today. It was near 50 degrees. I am still terrified of ice, but I got out, bought a couple things from the grocery store, and walked home. It felt so great. Stay tuned dear readers, there are more adventures to come, and lots of yarn to play with. and lots of looms just calling for warps…

Act as If…

I learned this sort of open ended phrase years ago, and found it sort of fit my life, no matter what was happening. You can fill in the blanks, ellipses are great for that, and this has been my motto for the last 6 weeks.

First, to update everyone on my shoulder progress, it has been nearly six weeks since I fractured it in a bad fall at the end of my street. I saw the doctor on Tuesday, he re-x-rayed my shoulder and watched as I demonstrated my abilities showing him my progress with the exercises he gave me. He was completely impressed. I didn’t tell him that I had carried on as if, sling and all, and ran dyepots and wove on a loom, and typed and cleaned house, because I needed/wanted to do all those things, and I figured out a way. (Ok, I really didn’t want to clean my house but I sorely needed to…)

So the sling is off, and though I have no muscle tone, my radius of movement improves daily. Which allows me to get into more trouble. This is the sort of thing that you can’t really hurt yourself, my body will tell me when I’ve crossed a line. The fracture has healed, and I just have to keep doing my exercises, trying hard to get back my range of motion.

I love January. It is actually my favorite month. Nothing happens outside, it is cold and everything is dead. Nothing happens on the calendar, I rarely had any teaching except occasionally in Florida or Southern California, which I never complained about because it was warm. Since I’m not traveling anymore to teach, there is nothing for the month of January. So I always have high hopes of accomplishing just creative stuff for me, dyepots, warping looms, sewing whatever. Things that make me happy. When I fractured my shoulder, I thought my January would be lost.

Can’t keep a handweaver down. It made me so happy to find a way to do just about everything I wanted to accomplish this month, sometimes it would be in slow motion, and sometimes my body would say, “That’s enough”. But I kept going, and kept busy.

The last of the four part series of piecing techniques on my YouTube Channel The Weaver Sews, dropped last night, and so I have a bunch of sewing to do to finish off all the started projects I demoed for the series.

The dress just needs handwork and of course all the little red tailor’s tacks removed. I have to be in an all day virtual event Saturday, with my guild members, so I plan to do most of that. I’m really happy with how it came out. And it has pockets.

The tote bag was a bit more challenging with one arm, since the Peltex base is so inflexible. I broke it into small bits at a time, to not stress out my shoulder too much and now all it needs is the lining, zipper, and handles.

Meanwhile, I finished up all the dyeing, sampling the Procion Dyes I got from Dharma back in December. I had no place to put the newly dyed yarns, and started creating a pile on the floor between a couple of the looms. I decided that I love this combination and this will be the next run of scarves I put on my Macomber loom.

Except I had to clear the loom first. I’ve been moaning over this warp that would never end. Back in October, I took a virtual class with Jennifer Moore on Rainbow Double Weave. The class was fantastic. I used what was on my shelf, which was 8/2 Tencel, and put on the recommended four yards of warp. The sett was 48epi, because you are weaving two layers simultaneously. Bringing up and dropping layers in various patterns and treadlings was the whole point of the class. Once I fell, getting down under the loom to change the skeleton tie-ups became nearly impossible on this particular loom with one arm, but the warp was narrow enough I could pass both shuttles (one for each layer) back and forth with one hand. So whatever the tie up was at that point, that’s what I used. The last week my endurance (initially about 6″ a day) increased to 12″ at a sitting, and then the last couple days, 18″, and my left arm just did what it could to help guide the shuttle in from the left side. My right arm did all the beater work.

So that is now off the loom and I’m thinking there has to be some kind of garment I can make with this sampler. I have ideas exploding in my head and I just have to clear all these other projects so I can sit and concentrate.

Meanwhile, I’m finishing up an article for Handwoven Magazine, for the September/October issue. I needed to test a theory, sort of a substitute for my original garment since that yarn has been discontinued, and I had no idea if I could actually wind a warp and thread a loom.

Last night I took a half pound cone I had of Harrisville Shetland, and pulled out my warping mill, and though it was challenging to spin it with my left arm I managed to do it in one sitting. The project was only 10″ wide, about 150 ends x 5 yards. Quick to wind usually, just took me a bit longer. I got it through the reed before heading to bed last night.

This morning I figured out how to thread (I work front to back) and had that warp through the heddles in an hour. Beaming took a half hour. I was weaving before lunch.

I’m using a vintage self striping sock yarn from my stash, to see how it performs with the Harrisville Shetland and the effect is pretty cool. The structure is a simple point twill, warp and weft.

I love when I can quickly satisfy my curiosity, and I’m so freaking proud of myself for figuring out how to do all the tasks I love to do with one functioning arm and one that is at about 35%. Each day my arm gets stronger and the shoulder rotation range larger. I’ve got about 2 1/2 weeks to get my arm over my head with assistance from the right arm, before I see the doctor again, but the muscle tone will eventually return. It is such a relief to not have to wear that sling anymore.

And so dear readers, we have shot a couple more videos that still need to be edited and launched, but I’m winding down the content for the YouTube channel. I have 75 videos on the subject of sewing with handwovens, and though I’ll occasionally think of something to add, my daughter needs to finish up her schooling and go back into the workforce. It has been a gift and a pleasure to have had these last couple years with her here to help me accomplish my dream of transferring my knowledge to a digital database. I’ve got looms and yarn, and fabric, and ideas calling to me, and I’m hoping by next week I’ll have 1 1/2 arms! Act as if…

The One Armed Bandit

It has been three weeks dear readers since I took my unfortunate fall that left me with a fractured shoulder right before Christmas.

Obviously it has been a painful few weeks, and challenging trying to get appointments, scans, etc. Between the holidays and Covid, I was not able to get what I needed in a timely manner, so I did miss the window of opportunity for surgery. I was on the borderline anyway, surgery might give me more complete range of motion for my shoulder, but the decision was made for me. I just couldn’t line things up fast enough.

Obviously things have been challenging, because I can’t just sit. I know I’ve been firmly told to just rest and heal by well meaning friends, but even after surgeries I’ve had in the past, resting and healing did more harm than good. I can’t sit for too long, because then my back gets out of whack. And my brain, which never stops, gets into lots of trouble if I can’t actually do things…

Once I got the pain under control, I kept thinking about what I could do with only one arm. Turns out a lot. Unfortunately the things I can do aren’t the kinds of things I love to do. Like paperwork, payroll filing, bookkeeping, tax prep. And cleaning. I can run around with a Swiffer duster on a wand with just my right arm. And I have a Dyson Cordless, which easily zooms around with one arm. Unfortunately. So there was no rest or vacation from cleaning, and that’s probably a good thing, because three animals make a mess.

I can also fix puzzles. We always have a puzzle going in a designated corner of the living room. I rotate through probably 100 puzzles that sit on the shelves. With Brianna’s company, we fix a 1000 piece puzzle about every three days.

And I can read, I’m about half way through the latest book in the Outlander series. It is like visiting old friends. And I can watch videos, I signed up for Jane Stafford’s School of Weaving back in October. I’m sure you are wondering why I would sign up for a series of videos on learning to weave. I get asked a lot where the best place is to get good information on how to weave. I’ve heard good things about Jane’s School of Weaving but I can’t recommend what I haven’t actually experienced. I can’t recommend her enough. She is thorough, and although I don’t completely agree with everything she is teaching, I absolutely think it is completely worth the $99 a year fee. Mostly where I work or think differently is because I weave for garments, which is a completely different set of parameters. And I’m also curious about how other teachers use a video medium. And I’m actually learning a few things.

Normally in January I’d be running daily dyepots. I had plenty of new Fiber Reactive Dyes, and lots of new yarn to play with. I thought long and hard about what I could do. I got my daughter to help me pull down all the yarn I had that could be dyed and organize and label it on the cabinets so I knew what I had.

I figured out a way to wind skeins with one arm using my AVL warping wheel.

I have a nice deep waist high stainless steel sink so I could mostly do the dyeing and rinsing with one arm.

I’ve already done two batches, a lovely Blue Grey and Eggplant. Though I could have picked an easier color to dye than Eggplant, lots of rinsing there. I can’t snap the skeins back in alignment, I get Brianna to help with that, and she can reach up to hang them easier than I can.

And I can weave on this warp from hell. I put on this 8/2 tencel warp for a Rainbow Double Weave Workshop last October. 48 ends per inch. Two layers simultaneously. So that would be 48 picks per inch. What was I thinking putting on 4 yards? This is the warp that never ends. The workshop was great, and I got to initially explore all the possibilities with the many skeleton tie-ups that the teacher suggested. But I can’t see myself crawling under the loom to try to tie up different combinations. Especially a Macomber. I think all looms need two hands to attach cords, chains or hooks.

So I went with whatever the last sample tie-up was, and I’m just weaving away, 6 inches a day, repeating the same motifs, working through all the bobbins I wound. I can do this with one arm because the shuttle is wider than the warp. I can push it in on one side, let it rest on the race, and pick it up with the same hand on the other side. 4 yards… 48 picks per inch. Sigh…

And I figured out how to sew. Sort of. I was working on a four part series for my YouTube Channel The Weaver Sews, on piecing, and the studio was a mess. There were pieces and partial works, and scraps everywhere. The piecing was basically finished, I was working on the binding strips when I fell, so I realized that if I removed the table from around my sewing machine, I could bring it up close and use the fingers from my left hand, peeking out of the sling, to help guide bias strips through the machine. Awkward but doable.

I couldn’t use a rotary cutter, but I could cut the bias by hand, with the scissors. The old fashioned way. Everything just takes longer.

And I can knit. Small things. With my fingers hanging out of the sling. I had purchased some 100% hemp yarn from Lunatic Fringe, Fibra Natura Java, in a few lovely colors. I had heard a lecture on the value of hemp, its antibacterial properties, and I decided to knit up some dishcloths, but I’m actually loving them as body washcloths, they have great exfoliating properties, and I can assure you, showering is challenging so I’m not doing it as often as I’d like and exfoliating is a welcome thing.

I am able to do most things for myself. Except for my hair. I can’t put my hair up in a ponytail or bun. I have to get my daughter to help. Silly I know, but I like wearing my hair up, and out of my face.

A huge thank you to all of you who reached out, privately, on social media, through phone calls and letters and cards. You all make every journey I take so much easier, knowing you walk with me in spirit. This arrived just the other day from the Southern California Handweaving Guild. It just brightened the whole room.

And my wonderful friend Misa came New Year’s Eve to celebrate the coming New Year with a real honest to goodness high tea. She ordered from a wonderful bakery in a nearby city, packed it all up with her favorite tea dishes, and the overshot runner she purchased from a fellow weaver at our guild show and sale last November. It is her favorite thing in the world and she desperately wants placemats to coordinate. I reached out to the weaver who made the runner. She isn’t interested in making placemats. But she pointed me to the Handwoven Magazine article from 2010 and said, “Help yourself!” 20/2 cotton. Really. Another warp from hell. I actually have the yarn on the shelf. And this is a really really good friend. And my shoulder will heal someday and I have plenty of available looms…

And so dear readers I carry on valiantly, resting when I need to and staying busy when I can. I have an article due for Handwoven Magazine at the end of the month, and more videos to shoot, we shot two last week believe it or not. I’ve starting exercises five times a day to get my arm and shoulder to work again. It is painful but a relief to open up and extend my arm. Let the healing begin…

Stay tuned…

In an instant…

Funny how life changes in an instant with such a few simple words… There have been a few times like that, most memorable was probable finding out i was pregnant after thinking we couldn’t have kids. That simple test changed my life irrevocably. and it happened twice! But that was 30+ years ago, and the resulting changes to my life were some of the hardest times and some of the best times my husband and had to navigate.

I’m sorry, its cancer… Those couple of words were said to me 20 years ago this February. I had to cancel many scheduled commitments, endure a year of painful surgery, chemotherapy, and disruption in our kids lives. But it was only a year, and there were some really positive things that came from it. Mostly about how I saw life…

I’m sorry… Those two words were said to my by the gastroenterologist who performed my husband’s endoscopy. That was six years ago… Those two simple words told me that in that instant, my life, future, everything we worked for would be changed irrevocably. My husband wasn’t goin to make it. He died 9 months later…

So I know how things can change in an instant… Monday morning I saw the physician for my annual. Everything is perfect. Blood numbers, Covid antibodies, I was in great shape. I had just written out my schedule for the week, other than planning to have my son visit Christmas Eve, (note to self… make up the guest room), I was finally free to play. My hairdryer died, and I wanted to pick up a couple Christmas cards for the kids, so I set out to walk to Walgreen’s, about a 6 minute walk, about 4:30pm. Still light, but I assumed it would be dark on my return. It is a walk I do most every day.

On the way home, I tripped over the asphalt curb at the end of my dead-end street. I tried to recover but ended up airborne, crashing down onto my left shoulder in the middle of the street. I heard the crack. At that moment, my neighbor came down the street in her car, saw me sprawled in the street, attempting to stand up, and not having an easy time of it, the pain was unbearable. She got me into her car, drove me three houses away, and took me home. I live with my daughter, so when I called for her, I knew it was broken. First break ever in 66 years. She loaded me into the car and took me to the ER. The rest is history. I have a CT scan scheduled Monday morning to see if I’ll need surgery. I broke the ball at the top of my humerus, that sits in the socket.

I’m so very lucky in so many ways. My daughter lives with and works for me. It could have been worse, involving an auto, etc. no one else was involved. The local community hospital we went to only had a two hour wait, instead of 12 for the nearest major medical center. The first 36 hours were mind numbingly painful but that seems to be subsiding and I’m mostly just uncomfortable. I can deal with that… There wasn’t anything of importance on my calendar, for the next couple of months, and I had just finished a run of Bronson Lace towels as gifts, washed, hemmed and ready to go, the previous Saturday.

I had just returned from a wonderful visit with my 90 year old mom in Maryland, where I discovered she still had and curled up under a mohair throw I wove for her in the early 1980’s. It is still lush and gorgeous and I snagged a photo.

i had spent the Friday before helping my weaving guild members sort through a large knitting yarn donation. We spent hours, but got it all into the small space we rent from the basement of the church where we meet, when we meet, because the last two years have been all on Zoom.

I brought home a couple of things that appealed to me, like this hand-painted wool. it was a one pound skein, with slight rodent damage, and took all Sunday morning to ball.

I spent all of Sunday planning a warp to go on the loom now empty from the towels. I wound, sleyed, threaded, and beamed a six yard warp, mixed wool and alpaca.

I found some llama I picked up years ago in a yarn crawl, for the weft. I have almost 1000 yards.

I picked a simple 4 shaft Swedish Rosepath draft from Davison and wove a repeat.

This made me smile…

And I’m lucky because we filmed three videos which haven’t launched yet, for the YouTube channel, The Weaver Sews, which if I’m really lucky will take me to when my arm comes out of the sling and I can hopefully and carefully prep for the last part of a three part series in my favorite piecing technique. Parts 1 and 2 were already shot. Right now my cutting table looks like this, layout for a summer dress, waiting for when I can use two arms again.

Don’t cry for me dear readers. From what I’ve read from my friends on social media, sharing their stories, this could have been far worse. I’m safe, and am very proud of myself when I manage to do something with one arm… it is the little things… like making bacon and eggs for myself yesterday morning. If you are reading this, it means I figured out how to write a post and process photos all with one arm, tedious but doable… I’m a weaver, I know what the definition of tedious is…

I cannot be more grateful for my daughter, who got up yesterday morning to the smell of bacon. She was stunned but not really surprised. Happy whatever you celebrate, stay safe in this time of never ending Covid. I switched to Tylenol, I’m not a Percocet kind of person. Which meant I could have a lovely glass of wine last night, and was proud of figuring out how to use the spigot on my box wine with one arm… There is always a way…

Stay tuned…