A Challenge

You haven’t seen me post a lot this year. And I have had to cancel most of my events due to health issues. You see, I haven’t been able to spin, weave or dye in months due to pain.

Not being able to do any of my fiber art is like taking away one of my senses. If you are on this page, you know that creating is like breathing to me. My hands must be busy at all times. I kept a spinning wheel in my car and a spindle in my purse. I was ramping up my historical textiles – spinning, dyeing and weaving. And then the pain came.

I have pain in my hands. Tendinitis, Raynauds, and other pain. My feet developed plantar fasciatis and arthritis of the toes. I had to stop spinning during a Judith MacKenzie workshop and and that was a devastating blow. It was obvious I was pushing my extremities too far. Though wearing three splints to bed at a time was pretty amusing.

To fill my time I have been drawing Zentangle inspired art. I take pens with me to the places I used to take a spindle. You can see a new page, Fine art and Prints in the navigation and I will be putting prints into my Etsy store.

In addition, I have been looking into adaptive technology for the fiber artist. I have a new electric spinning wheel made by HansenCrafts which is allowing me to spin with minimal pain. I have a pair of Doc Martens with inserts so I can walk with minimal limping. I wear fingerless gloves at the keyboard to keep my hands warm. I am looking into what I can do for weaving on the floor looms. Maybe crafters gloves or splints.

If I can make an exercise spinning wheel, I can figure this out. This is a challenge and it is not going to stop me.

Columbus Monthly

Shibori dyed and pleated scarfWhat an honor! I was one of the Etsy folks from around Columbus featured on page 59 of Columbus Monthly Magazine. I am so thrilled! If you came here from Columbus Monthly, here are a few links for you:

Thank you so much for stopping by!

Like and Love

Fig. 7 - Fabric on loomWhat is the difference between liking what you do and loving it? It is something I thought long and hard about this summer while recovering from surgery.

I like dyeing my scarves. I like shibori and the magic I see when I pull the dried scarf off the poles. I like the colors and challenges and chemistry and working with silk. And that is a good thing. However, I don’t wear scarves day-to-day. I am really not a scarf person. And it is hard to sell something you don’t wear.

But I love weaving. Specifically, I love weaving from archaeological sources. My library is full of source material. I dream in weaving drafts and love to warp the loom. Dyeing the yarns to match period colors. Drafting the weave. Finishing the cloth. It is as close as I can get to time travel. As a friend said, I have always had my head there.

I think you are going to see more and more history here; natural dyes, sources, projects. I have three medieval commissions. I also have a copy of a weaver’s account book from 1814 with his drafts and dye recipes. And I will be twining prehistoric Hopewell fabrics. this is where my head is. My passion.

This is the difference between like and love.

My Exercise Bike – Final Assembly

Take the flyer unit on its bases over to the bike. Put the bottom base onto the dowels. Screw the bottom base onto the dowels.

On the main part of the bike, behind the tension knob on the frame, drill a 1/4″ hole all the way through the frame. I suggest taking a large nail and a hammer to mark where the hole is supposed to be. Otherwise, the drill cannot get a good surface to drill and it will skitter across the round surface.

Take one of the pulleys and insert the 1/4″ dowel cut to about 6″ in length. Thread the dowel through the hole in the bike. Put the other pulley on the other side. You may have to pound the pulleys a bit on the dowel to get them close to the bike frame.

Take some good twine or cotton yarn and thread up through the flange on the left side over the flyer, down the flange on the right side, behind the pulley, through the front of the wheel, around to the back of the wheel, behind the left pulley and up through the left flange again. Tie it really tight. You may have to adjust the tension drawer pull to increase the tension. If the drive band tends to fall off the pulleys, pound the pulleys closer to the wheel. It will likely take some fiddling to get the drive band to catch and start turning the flyer. But once it does, you will be on your way to making yarn!

another view of drive bandPath of drive bandIf want me to do the work for you and put together an exercise bike/spinning wheel for you, please contact me using the form below. Keep in mind, I live in Ohio and delivery via UPS or USPS would be really expensive.