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now what? - when you don't know what to do...
do the next thing
tashabear
tashabear
now what?
The wedding's over, now what do I do?

Sew some more, of course!  I have two dresses and a tunic to remake to fit us for Pennsic!  I think I'll start with Dad's tunic; all I have to do is take off the side panels and make them narrower.  I'll probably serge everything while I'm at it, to keep the seam allowances from fraying away into nothingness.  I should take out the top and bottom hems on my red dress and serge those seams as well, and I'll serge the purple dress when I take it apart.  I'm not sure about the blue linen-cotton blend items, but they'll probably see the serger, too.  Better safe than sorry.  Wolfie needs more pants to wear with garb, and I could use one more smock.  We were given fabric as a wedding gift (which is very cool!), so I need to see how much I have of what, and what I can make out of it, but I think I may make a nice wool tunic out of the green wool for Wolfie.

My sewing room needs tidying in the worst way, so that's on the list.  And now I can start on the projects for the Laurel's Challenge.  I think that Tuesday I shall go bother the boys at Thwaite's for a bone with which to make needles.  And I can go back to spinning -- I have some gorgeous purple I'm working on for gloves, and then I have the copper stuff I bought at the Elegant Ewe in Concord NH to spin for thread to embroider Wolfie's green tunic.  (I obviously need more fiber, since I want to use more colors than just copper.  Shucky-darn.)  And there's a cushion what needs planning, too.

There's a thought: the cushion.  It needs to be 12x12, based on a pattern in Rutt.  Some of those patterns were originally knit at a gauge of something like 22 st/in, which I'm not going to see in this lifetime.  Should I just knit commercial yarn in the finest gauge I can find, or should I spin up something and dye it (less likely to happen), or should I spin dyed fiber and use that, and hope that the gauges end up the same, or should I do the wacky, and spin up different colors of the same breed of sheep (like white and black BFL)?  Comments and ideas welcomed.

I may skip the "weaving with handspun" challenge.  I have a plan in my head for a loom, and the heddle is easy, it's the spinning that is the challenge.  I want to make wickelbander, or leg wraps.  IIRC, Viking wickelbander were tabby-woven with warp and weft made of singles spun in opposite directions.  I can't remember which was S and which was Z, but I can look it up.  I'm not entirely confident in my ability to spin a single that'll hold up to the tension of warping, but maybe I should try it before I give up.  I can make the loom out of wood bits we have here in the house (though I may use closet pole for take-ups on either end).  I should go find a Harrisville rigid heddle loom to look at to make sure I don't miss any parts.  That's if I decide to make one; I may bite the bullet and buy one.  I should look on eBay.

I should also go to bed... It's been a busy weekend, and I want my pillows.

i feel: hungry hungry

4 trips or shoot the rapids
Comments
From: nutter4 Date: June 27th, 2004 09:56 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Sergers...lucky soul. I tend to zig-zag over the edges which sort of stops them fraying. It's frowned upon by the authenticity police though.

Comments and ideas welcomed.

What's the cushion made of? Is the plan tapestry on a canvas/cotton background, or is this going to be free-hand embroidery on ordinary fabric? If the former, cotton aida is available in fairly fine mesh, so you could decide on the mesh and buy commercial yarn to match. Different colours of wool from the same sheep... it would be funky, but don't try it with Jacob. A great colour range, but incredibly springy stuff.

I'm not entirely confident in my ability to spin a single that'll hold up to the tension of warping

From what I've read, it's only really a problem if you want to use a warp-weighted loom. Then (if you want to try weaving with the thickness of wool the Vikings used) you're restricted to one or two breeds of sheep for it to work. Spinning for an ordinary loom shouldn't be too bad so long as you put a fair amount of twist in; though you may have to play around with that so that there isn't too much bias in the finished piece.
tashabear From: tashabear Date: June 28th, 2004 04:08 am (UTC) (base camp)
The cushion is actually knit. (I'm going to try to respond to 4 challenges: knit a cushion, embroider a garment, weave with handspun, and make and use a tool.) I'm really leaning towards different natural colors of wool.

I may try to pick up some Icelandic top to spin for the wickelbander... Gotland fier is hard to find, I think. What else might have been used? Shetland, maybe?
From: nutter4 Date: June 28th, 2004 04:22 am (UTC) (base camp)
The cushion is actually knit.
Doh! Missed that the first time round. Different natural colours would be funky; the advantage of spinning your own is you could do it worsted, which would wear better for something like a cushion.

wickelbander
Now there's a term I haven't come across before - we usually refer to them as winingas, but I think that's Anglo-Saxon.

What else might have been used? Shetland, maybe?
Possibly... also Jacob, which is thought to be descended from the Norse breeds. I get the impression that any breed with multiple horns and rug-like wool is probably authentic! :)

ciorstan From: ciorstan Date: June 28th, 2004 10:06 am (UTC) (base camp)
In addition, you can use Gotland Spelsau, Shetland, or Icelandic tog and/or thel-- I can't remember which part is which. You want the long silky part of the coat, not the interior downy fluff.

Older sheep breeds have a double coat. Combing tends to take the fluff out and leave you with the long, silky straight staple, which was used to make the finest worsted yarns. If you have a dog or a cat, you can part the exterior layer and see the inner coat, which is exactly what sheep used to have prior to breeding for merino-type fleeces during the middle ages.
4 trips or shoot the rapids