Friday, April 28, 2017

The Day the Sewing Machines All Died

Don McLean might be proud  I fit that title in sort of to his song American Pie. And if you want a good ear worm today here you go!

But really one Sunday two machines managed to fail on me and a third decided he didn't want to wind bobbins anymore later in the week. Sigh! My stable of Pfaffs are all vintage 1980's and 1990's, so it really isn't surprising that there will be failures, but Pfaff has sold and they are no longer manufacturing parts for these German made, mostly metal workhorses and it was obvious that I needed to do something. I picked my favorite machine, the oldest too, the electronic 1171(no computer on this one) and called Brubaker's in PA. They are the only sewing center I know of that reconditions these Pfaffs from the bottom up and sell them with a 1 year warranty. They must have stock-piled mother boards and circuit boards.

 Anyway, I bought a newly reconditioned 1171, new circuit boards and the warranty.

  Sews like a brand new, well engineered, machine.

Didn't get gobs of sewing out of the salon, a simple sleeveless top in cotton lawn,

 some cute mushrooms made it to a modified Indigo Junction Urban Tunic

 and spring green linen pants which happen to work with a number of things in my wardrobe.

 I love this color, it might be my favorite green color and I like a lot of green's. Stella of course, refers to it as "Timmy Green", which I might add is the last of the solid rubber balls we have and can find no more of them.

Spring in general has not been forthcoming here. Most days have looked like this,

 but we had one afternoon that it was nice enough to do this.

And nothing gets my attention more than a light green book cover with a dreamy drawing of a horse on it.

"Tony" came home with me. His story is sweet, simple and soothing. The artwork lovely.

A little progress has been made on the pillowcase weaving. I cleared the Cendrel inkle loom of one band and put on another for kitchen towel hanging loops.

 I'm on my last towel I think on Nick and already planning the next warp, bright white hemp and spring green linen stripe towels. The linen is on order.

Did That Just Happen?

OMFG! I hate to say it but that is a familiar refrain around here. History buffs  can look back on the Cuban Missile crisis and realize that it was diplomacy that saved the day. Allowing Khrushchev to save face and back down and also a second deal negotiated allowed Castro to keep face with his country.
No such diplomacy exists in the current WH and the stakes are as high if not higher. What IS this asshat thinking?

I have no words for this but why with so much outreach available?

Russia, Russia, Russia. Can you imagine the outcry if this was HRC in office? I just can't imagine THAT many people having Russian ties and something not going on. Can you?

Parting shots: I'll clean your ears too!

And we'll keep each other warm

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Snowing, Just Another Word for Nothin' There but Mud.

You can think that title humming to the tune of "Me and Bobby McGee" if you like. If my pics don't dazzle at least I can give you an ear worm huh? ;-)

Just when it gets both warm and somewhat dry in the garden, it either pours or snows. of last weeks drives to town,

 and today the damp solid is again gracing us. Last night the horses needed fly masks this morning I'll have to yank them off, if they haven't done so already on their the mud...somewhere...out there.

But if garden endeavors are stalled, inside at least is productive and entertaining.
Pillow case warp, finally in progress

 and looky there, the evil color and weave warp is done, choke tied and ready for warping on Fiona.

 I see lots of shuttle throwing in my future. Both these warps are pretty long. I may jump the tracks doing a 7 yard color and weave project but we'll see.

The start of a very pretty lilac linen towel on the Nick, the Macomber.

It may be soggy and gloomy outside, but inside we have SPRING, this top proves it.

 I loved this fabric so much I went back and reordered 4 more yards. I'm seeing some retro pillowcases or maybe an apron. Both and then some!

This Mississippi Ave tunic only carries the Spring theme along.

 Sleeveless and with pink trim, it got an outing on Easter. Who needs bunnies when you have raccoons in bows?

I also freed this beautiful, magical book from the shelves.

 For those that have ever gotten the catalogue from The Webster's you are familiar with the artwork of Mari Gayatri Stein because it has graced their covers for as long as I can remember. Fitting too, because Mari passed away earlier this year, either on my birthday or the day before.

Our own strange moon last week. Spooky times at the five in the morning farm feeding.

Have I mentioned I love my new Joy 2 wheel Amelia?

I started spinning some long treasured fiber on her, a 50/50 baby camel and merino blend and it is spinning like butter. A little tricky but this is the first wheel I have been able to get it all together to give this fiber a go. And that brings us to the 216 yards of worsted/dk weight hand spun and plied BFL yarn
that I finished spinning this week.

 Free for charity knitting or give it to someone you know who charity knits, first come, first served, just let me know in the comments section.

Did That Just Happen?

Oh god, where to start. Let's start with the two most dangerous moves the orange asshat has made in the last week or so. Bluffing on boats and then backtracking. Is there nothing he won't lie about?
And let's saber rattle over the Iran nuclear deal, because lord knows no one is going to be happy unless we are marching to war with at least 3 or is 4 countries and pissing off many more in the process. He just can't wait to bomb the sh*t out of someone for something as soon as possible.

And look here, Exxon is asking for sanctions to be removed so they can go ahead and with the 500 billion dollar deal with Russian state owned (Putin) oil giant Rosneft. Wasn't this Vlad's plan all along?

But there is a plenty to scare us here at home, never fear. I find this one of the scariest things. Let's all let big business bury whatever they don't like. Didn't the tobacco companies do that so many years ago?

Parting shot: After a day at the spa.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

It's All Addition and Subtraction

These days when something migrates in, I try to move what it replaced, out. This of course does not work with animals or stash items, but for many other things it does.  So it was with a fiber tool I had not been enjoying. My folks gave me a Schacht Sidekick for Christmas 2015. Quality product, uses bobbins I already have with my Matchless, a known quality and a beautiful wheel. Trouble was, I never found my groove with it, so it sat, and sat and sat. It may have sat for another year or two, but I stopped in the garden of yarnly delights, the Webster's on a Saturday morning right before a spinning class. The Ashford Joy wheel was down in the classroom ready to go when people showed up. I asked if I could sneak a spin on it. HOW STUPID WAS THAT? I could have sat there spinning the whole day. Instead I ordered one and went home and listed the Schacht Sidekick. The Joy 2 arrived last Thursday and I have been thoroughly enjoying spinning on her.

The Sidekick is heading out to her new home today.
So meet Amelia Joy.

I also thought about why I don't spin more because I do find it relaxing and rewarding. The problem has always been what to do with the yarn. I will never be able to use all I would like to spin. It's the spinning I like not necessarily the knitting or weaving with the handspun. So I've decided to give away the handspun to charity knitters locally and on the blog. That has freed me up to put spinning in the daily category. Whew! And little Amelia Joy is going to love the deck I just know it!

The sewing salon has seen its usual activities, linen summer wear is making a more steady appearance.
I decided to make a maxi dress with some linen I had gotten and wasn't as fond of the color as I thought I might be.

 Besides being long this Kiota top ( Lotta Jansdotter's book Everyday Style)has added pleats in back which has also been modified to an almost racer back and nice roomy patch pockets.

I love the feel of the fabric and I know it will be a nice garment for hot summer days. As will this crossweave linen Indygo Junction Urban Tunic.

I raised the neck line but everything else is the same. Such a pretty color.

I have purged a lot of patterns over the last year or so and few have replaced those numbers, but these two have made the cut.

I love the travel dress and the jumpsuit pattern looks like it could be a fun make.

I see more and more jumpsuit patterns but I liked the unfussy style of this one by Victoria Jones.

I have also started a quilt top. I saw it in a book and fell in love.

 There is a lot going on here, the cut strips are hanging on the Baby Wolf breast beam, which BTW is one half threaded. Molasses ain't got nothing on me!

And the color and weave placemat warp for Fiona the wolf pup is moving along....slowly.

Patterns is from "Simple Weaves" book. A favorite for sure.

Which brings us to:
Did That Just Happen?

Now I've said on numerous times I believe that asshat in office is going to get us all killed. I'm only half kidding. Just what North Korea needs to push them over the edge,  is a huge military show of force. Their leader is more nuts than ours (maybe?), but really, I never thought I would say let the cooler heads of China have time to rein this regime in for right now.

Good-bye Bill, the world sees you for the hypocrite you've always been. Gosh, can we get Rush off the airwaves too? Hannity??

Everyone has an opinion on the bombing of Syria. For me, if you are so moved by the death of these people it shouldn't matter the means and we should be ramping up our refugee program or championing a safe zone. You can't have it both ways. And there are few things crueler than offering these people false hope. Congress, why didn't you allow Obama to do something in 2013 when it was still Russia free in Syria? Talk about spine-less wimps, too worried about re-elections. DO YOUR JOB and that means taking back power from a dangerous WH right now!

But speaking to hope, small things reaffirm our humanity and goodness. It's been a good long while since a Pope has been a true symbol of anything good and charitable, but this one is I think.

Parting shot: Yin and Yang. Brother and Sister. Peace and Love.

Monday, April 3, 2017

The Apartment

Take your pick of movies by the same name, French 1996 film or American 1960, but I figured I'd share some pics of my Mom's new 10th floor digs. Good pics are hard due to the contrast but you get the gist.

Even managed to find room for Dad's big ass tv

 She loves living there and I love knowing she has 3 provided meals daily (there are four different restaurants) along with as much social contact as she could want. And OMG, the view......

Threading continues slowly on the pillowcase warp. I have been enjoying the band loom way too much and although I am slow, the band moves along at a steady pace.  I have a warp slowly taking shape on the board for Fiona. It's a color and weave effect, slow measuring and likely slow weaving, but that isn't a bad thing. Spring is coming and watching the wonders unfold again after winter is entertainment in itself.

Stella had her 7th birthday last week and Robin has his 6th this week!

Where did the time go? Puppyhood is far too short.

I sat on that Asymmetrical tunic pattern forever and now I don't know why. I love the pattern and I love the fit. What I didn't love was that it was sleeveless.

 I make and wear sleeveless but to extend the value of the pattern, sleeves were really required, so I drafted the armsye to take a known nice fitting sleeve and couldn't be happier.

back detail
 I really want to play with some color blocked versions of this and you can be sure I have some great scraps and limited yardage to pick from.

These two pieces were both odd fabrics I had purchased, years apart and in some weird color way they work together.

 I probably won't wear them together but the pants have already had an outing or two. See above with grey tunic. Note to self to grab that top and a brown ( or grey blue!), sweater and embrace the funky.

Did That Just Happen?

Oh boy, that EPA roll back and climate denying. It's a flipping mess. It's me, looking at all the beautiful places there are around us and wondering if anything will survive the onslaught. I cry over it.

Really, the ties with Putin and Russia run very deep and the trickle is turning into a steady drip but you might have missed this one.

And speaking of Russia, why is not our President and the head of the State Department at least raising diplomatic alarms at this clear violation of human rights. Makes me wonder if this administration is simply taking notes on procedure.

Parting shot: Happiness is, a good afternoon nap!