Thursday, October 24, 2013

Filling fall with projects . . . . .

The feel of autumn is definitely in the air here this week.  Even the quality of the daylight seems different.  The days are getting shorter and it is dark now when I get up at 6 each morning.  All these signs of seasonal change bring little waves of apprehension, for as much as I love September and
October  the inevitable gray, cold days of November, December, January and February will have to follow.

I feel this dread of winter a bit more intensely each year.  I begin to understand the draw of sunny climes and the migration of Minnesota elder snow-birds to Florida or Arizona for the worst months of snowfall and sub-zero temperatures.  I am not ready to follow this pattern quite yet but here at our house we begin to speak of "a couple months in a warmer spot for January and February someday" - someday.  Maybe someday.

But for now I begin to cocoon.  The loom and the spinning wheel, the wool and all the yarn and fiber begin to pull me indoors.  The distraction of the vegetable garden and the flower beds will be all tucked away for the season soon.  The family room and weaving corner feels cozy and promising as a winter evening retreat.  This is angora from a goat named Madeline, a large bag of lovely softness waiting to be spun - a gift from my friend Betty.

I am still working away at my ever present sock knitting.  I do not really ever tire of producing these.
But I have promised myself a change of pace with a larger project for the early winter months.  I am searching for the perfect pullover sweater pattern.  I want something very simple, a casual look, probably wool yarn.  I will decide within the next couple of weeks so that I can get started and have a chance to wear the finished product this winter!

I have strung the loom with a warp for eight placemats, a simple plain weave, woven with this multi-strand yarn filler pictured above.  These will weave up quickly and then a warp of log cabin placemats is next.  My plan after that is for something a bit more complex and challenging.  I need that motivation to keep me from lapsing into hibernation mode as the snow looms ahead!

I am drawn to this draft for a halvdrall runner.  Havdrall is a Swedish supplementary-weft structure that works a lot like crackle.  It would definitely be a challenge.  I will let you know how this goes! 

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