John is clever. He has the skills to make things he wants or we want. As a weaver you often need to make tassles for the ends of scarves or shawls. It is laborious to make all the twisted cords by hand. John invented a gadget from his bits and bobs. You attach the strands of yarn to the alligator clips and you wind with the metal winder bottom left. Anyone in our group who has used this gadget thinks it it simple and easy. It is not very big so it doesn’t require storage space.
You can also make twisted cords with a pencil, pen or dowel. It is just nice having a gadget 🙂
Margaret is getting in early! She found a Christmas crochet wreath (bottom right) and loved it so much she wanted to make it herself. She used the ring from a milk bottle top as the foundation. Good way to repurpose and upcycle plastic. She has used picot stitch around the edge and she has made one with French knots. The colourful one she made shows you you can use the pattern for other purposes too. She wrote down the pattern as she did it. That in itself is an indication of how careful and attentive Margaret is to her work.
Peter and Marina had a Ron Doley carder which they had purchased a while back. They have been thinking of turning it into an electric carder. John, one of our top weavers, liked the idea of this challenge and so he and Peter have been working together for a number of weeks now to try and turn the carder into an electric one. It has required thought, testing, more thought and more testing. It has been a good brain challenge. It is great when you look at people around you setting themselves a puzzle to solve and then using skills and expertise to arrive at a good solution.
This week the carder was finally finished. John (left) and Peter (right) are justifiably proud of this achievement. Sandy, one of the Adelaide Hills spinners and weavers , was more than happy to test the carder and give it a trial run. By the way, doesn’t John look good in the Fair Isle vest Christine knitted? Suits him so well.
Challenges like the carder can be frustrating , at times, along the way but such a thrill when you achieve your goal. Peter and Marina now have an electric carder which runs beautifully off a sewing machine motor.
Below is another example of creative thinking. Katharine Jolda is demonstrating her Cyclocarder. Great way to card and keep fit and a bonus if there is a blackout!
We had some really good weaving ideas this week. Top is the woven phone pouch Peter made and his wife, Marina, sewed it all together. He also has a matching one for his glasses. In was done on an inkle loom. Bottom left is the dog collar Marina made on her inkle loom and it looks so good and is such a good idea. She has to make another one for the other family dog! So good to be able to make the things you actually need. The dog collar is on top of a lovely woven pillow made from upcycled tablecloths and sheets. In real life it looks really nice and would be a great addition to any chair. Upcycling old clothing and manchester is a great way to get bags , cushions and mats and they are stylish items. Woven fabric has a cool look about it. It is strong and durable too. Bottom right is the tabletop sprang loom John made for Christine out of upcycled wood. We like to make use of everything and we all have stashes of bits which can be upcycled into something we need. The tabletop loom means Christine can sit comfortably to do her sprang weaving. The bonus is we can see better what she is doing and so it raises our level of interest and involvement in what Christine is doing. Living proof you can just use what is around you to make lovely things.