I was playing around with a scheduling app a few days ago, inspired by a weeklong spring clean by Makelight. I’m sorry to report I didn’t finish following up on that but maybe at some point I will.
Those of you who read my blog by visiting it might notice a strangeness. I tried to redo the theme and in the process I lost some settings 😟
Then there was the experiment to set up a payment mode for my products, right here rather than on any e-retail platforms. I added a PayPal button to the green scarf I wove a few weeks ago. I’m not sure if it’s working though.
So why have my experiments flopped?
1. Scheduling flopped because I didn’t build up enough content for scheduling to make sense. I’m finding it difficult to write a couple of blog posts a week and only manage to post Instagram pics because they don’t require much content.
2. Changing themes wasn’t a success because I know just enough WordPress to deconstruct and not enough to build (a little knowledge. And so on).
3. Payment may have sunk because a. I didn’t actually publicise it besides asking one friend to check it out and/or b. I’m not sure I did it correctly.
So now what’s next for this lab of mine?
Should I admit defeat and give up this online selling attempt and stick to word of mouth?
Should I give in and hire an expert (the consequent question would be, is the expense justified at this stage of my craft business or will it ever be?)
Just keep on keeping on and hope somehow I manage to whip myself and my online presence into shape with no outside help?
One thing that I do seem to be able to do is make stuff.
Now to find a way to keep these things moving on so I can make some more.
Well not really, because my hands are on my phone. But yes. I don’t have my loom with me while waiting at a class. So I thought I’d blog instead.
What, another stall setup? You’ll ask. Not exactly. It was an audition for an upcoming event. This would be the biggest bestest event ever if it happened and I’d be having about 3″ of space for my stuff. But I’m not a hundred per cent sure yet, so watch this space.
However! That yellow thing you see is my last but one scarf. Woven on my Ashford Knitters Loom, with some loopy boucle yarn.
I had to think a little to work with the loopy yarn. Finally I had it. Having only a 7.5 dpi heddle and a 10 dpi, I used the loopy warp in every other slot of the 7.5, and the coordinating thin polyester thread alternating. When it came to threading the heddle, I used the thread in the heddle holes and the loopy yarn in the slots.
This resulted in an interesting texture, with much of the loopiness confined to the top surface and the thread on the bottom. Like so.
To the left is one side (top as I wove) and to the other is the bottom.
As you can see, the fringe is a bit of a challenge, both because of the two different warp textures, as well as because the loopy part of the boucle is not very stably attached to the core yarn, so it unravels and becomes unloopy. I finally just knotted the strands together in groups.
I’m happy to report that a friend bought this one almost as soon as it was off the loom.
The other miraculous part of this story is that I have the exact shades of the sewing thread to match the three colours of the boucle. This also happened with the actual shawl I wove for the person I bought the boucle for originally.
In a long chain of events, she saw the substitute yarn I bought for another order and asked me to use that instead, so I went ahead and ordered it, but underestimated how much I would need. And only discovered it when I began to warp with it.
Scrambling for ideas, I ended up using my scraps of a different yarn and came up with this.
You can see where I changed yarns, from Nako Artist (the substitute) to Nako Vals (which was out of stock at the store but I had remnants from previous projects). The weft is black sewing thread.
This gave me a very rustic, thick yet loosely woven shawl and it thrills me no end that my customer (a different one!) loved it! Weaving was a challenge since the warp was a little dense and the unplied, singles nature of the Vals and the general fuzziness of the Artist (a wool blend) made making a clean shed difficult.
Sometimes serendipity is wonderful.
Coming back to the friend who I’d bought the Artist for, I discovered that Ganga Hobby India Multicolour had a shade (?) that coordinated perfectly.
So again, this worked out well. Another rustic stole with interesting texture. I followed the same basic technique with the warp, using the wool blend in the slots, since I found it tends to stick together and resist separating to make a shed, and the smooth and thinner yarn in the holes. This one ended up more grid-like, and the wool bloomed to fill in spaces.
So there you have it. If you are still reading and didn’t throw up your hands at the confusion of it all, thank you for your persistence!
And yes, I’m finishing this blog post many hours later, since I wasn’t able to get it done before the class ended.
I’ve begun weaving again in the past couple of months, spurred by my purchase of the 12″ Ashford Knitters Loom. I wanted a portable craft and since crochet and knitting don’t do it for me any longer, this is it. This is a thing of beauty.
I’m happy to report that my heart still clenches within me at the sight of a shed seen sideways on a loom. As below. Those neat lines of yarn set out and waiting to be woven gives me inexplicable joy.
So I’m happy to say I’ve woven several items on the new loom as well as my older Hamanaka Olivier 24″.
And sold many, too!
As a result I haven’t been sewing much. What with juggling two looms, one at home and one at non-soccer-soccer mom duties. And then I foolishly left all the fringes to do. This meant I spent most of the last weekend (including a rare non-working Saturday) twisting the fringes of about 4 or 5 scarves of various sizes.
Twisting fringe is tough on my fingers and wrists. I thought I’d make my job easier by using the hair twisting thingummy I bought on Amazon. Unfortunately, the dratted gadget gave up the ghost after about 2 scarves. So much for buying a dual purpose gizmo. It was supposed to be helpful for styling my daughter’s hair as well.
Finish I did, though!
I hope at some point to return to my floor loom as well. Make my yarn work harder than simply being interesting by virtue of its surface appearance alone. Celebrate the brains of weaving rather than just the beauty…