Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Clocking up the miles - in more ways than one!

Just back from Carloway having delivered a large sheet of Borve, Harris Cheviot sheep's wool to Harris Tweed Textiles. It was supposed to be around 30kgs but I think it was more than that. We have our fingers crossed that there is enough crimpiness to hold everything together on the carders now. Steve the Mill Manager said he was going to get started on it next week - so good luck guys!

The dogs were good on the journey (which takes about 1.5 hrs each way) as they always are. Here's a piccie of Pippin to show how big he's getting. One ear is fully vertical now and the other one is on its way up. He looked so cute with the floppy ears but I guess now he's growing up cuteness is not going to be high on his priority list. He is nearly the same size as Bramble and judging by the size of his feet, is still going to put on some inches before he's finished.

When we got home there was a US parcel waiting for me. Great excitement - the yarnmeterI ordered only a few days ago. It was up and running within minutes.....

I have been looking for a small portable yarn meter for ages and ages - when I'm spinning wool for sale people always want to know the yardage as well as the weight as you can work out the thickness of the yarn from that as handspun is generally not a standard gauge. Also, when making up yarn packages for the warping creel, it would be good to know how much to wind onto the little cones so I don't either have knots in the warp because I've underestimated, or loads of part-empty cones hanging around because I've over-estimated. Now, at last my problems are at an end! The principle is to wind the yarn round the wheel (which is 18 ins circumference) and wind it, thus rotating the wheel and clocking up the yardage on the number counter. To get yards you divide by two. Simple!

The meter came from http://www.yarnmeter.com/ and the service is terrific. Nadya was so helpful about air mail postage etc. If you look on the web site there is a wee video to show how it works, but its such a simple idea and soooo effective. Thanks Nadya. Another plus is that the figures on the counter are big enough to see without having to keep bending over, so even my old eyes are not strained! If only the mobile phone companies and packaging printers could take a leaf out of this particular book...

To close the blog today here is a picture of my new linsey-woolsey. Remember the rusty orange and sand linen stripey warp? Well, this is it on the loom with a weft consisting of 2 shots of brown Hebridean and 2 shots of grey Hebridean.

Now, this wasn't what I originally planned - when I tried thebrown on its own it looked a bit odd and I was a tad disappointed with the result. Maybe too much contrast between the brights and the dark, or maybe something else was affecting the look of it. Anyway, decided to add in the grey too and, whilst it will not rock the universe, it is a very pleasant, understated and distinctly tweedy effect. This makes me think I should be considering a matching plain tweed using both grey and brown Hebridean - maybe alternate ends in the warp and with a plain brown weft, or as 2 ends grey 2 ends brown in the warp with a 2 and 2 weft as well which would make a tight little checkerboard effect that would look peppery from a distance and hopefully match in with the linsey woolsey.

Anyone who has any thoughts on this, please do not hold back - I need all the help I can get at this stage of the show!

Now to do some weaving and play with my new yarn meter...........

5 comments:

JK said...

And did you go to the mill on the QT.....lol

Nina said...

OOOOOOOOOps adaisy i mean yarn all changed ....lol
See u thursday night

Scalpay Linen said...

OK JK - guilty as charged m'lud!

6p01157051d747970b said...

I've never heard of a yarn meter before - what a great idea! Love the colour of the stripey fabric - ery autumnal and modern with a traditional edge to it. No idea what you were talking about after that - warp weft blah blah blah - huh? But I think it looks great.

Scalpay Linen said...

Thank you Mu Mu (is it ok for me to call you that? 6p0115...etc seems somehow so impersonal). Your kind comments are much appreciated. As far as the technical jargon is concerned, keep reading and you'll pick it up no bother. Do keep us informed as to your spinning, weaving progress.