Patience

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There has been an enormous amount of shifting, rearranging, donating and giving away of clothing in this house over the past year.

Some items, its easy. The woollen vest went to just the right person. Some t- shirts found their best home immediately – honey badger shirt Sunshine? It makes me smile every time I think of it worn. It will wear out eventually – but the stuff that doesn’t fit anyone, what to do with it? A lot went to charity. Some has been just quietly waiting for inspiration.

This cycling rain jacket is one of the ones that wanted to stay around. I wore it a few times, but the arms went practically to my knees and it looked a wee bit odd on. Still, its old, well worn, even patched in a couple of places. It was well cared for.

It rained this morning and I had a fairly obvious brain flash. I do have rudimentary skills after all. I hauled out the sewing machine and shortened the sleeves.I removed the cuffs and then tapered the sleeve a bit. It took a bit of brain power given I haven’t done this before, and I ended up having to baste the cuff onto the sleeve to maneuver it around to stitch it. The cuffs won’t be very waterproof after all this, but it doesn’t look so clearly ill fitting anymore, and will go on for more use – by me. It will wear out, and is on its way. But it isn’t ready to be lost in the shuffle in those charity drop off boxes quite yet. I am glad of it.

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The scarf at the top is the wet finished weaving that was started months ago, and worked on fitfully after that. All washed and hemmed now, and it softened considerably. It lingered all winter, a bit of weaving done a few minutes at a time over the last rainy season. I think I will keep it.

Multi Shaft Weaving, No Shaft Weaving…

The second is a bit of a palate cleanse from the first.

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The first: napkins for the dinner table, wonderful to me in that the sett worked, the pattern worked, the materials worked and there are no obvious blunders. A small improvement in skills, though much of multi- shaft weaving remains just out of my understanding. I blindly follow instructions here.

The second: odds and ends first spun into a four ply novelty yarn. The loom a picture frame, string and office supplies. The material likely to be made into small bags, (the extent of my primitive sewing skills, using suitably primitive fabric.) In a way weaving is a pretty expensive hobby, in another, well, use what you have. Fun.

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I took the van for a run to Crescent Beach. Watched the birds and sat for a while.

Boundary Bay Birds

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I went to a park new to me, armed with the camera in the fog. This is another gem easily accessed from Vancouver, it may be a new regular stop. There are many kilometres of walking trails and it was very peaceful there this morning. Pictured is a juvenile eagle.

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Because I was in the area anyhow, I swung by the Riefal Bird Sanctuary. The yearly membership is really inexpensive, and it means even if tired and a long walk is out, one can pop in and see who is hanging around.

While there I picked up a book, a natural history of British Columbia, which may increase the chances of my knowing what I am talking about when I go on about what I have photographed! It looks interesting.

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Adapting to conditions? The wily Harlequin Duck, trying to pass himself off as a red winged blackbird at the small bird feeder. Goofball.

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And here is the obligatory craft shot – woven twill, with leftover sock yarn weft, and some leftover plain weave hand spun cotton – both made into bags. One is my new knitting bag, the smaller will be used for carrying books perhaps. I didn’t do the cross stitch piece on the front of the small bag, my friend Ruth did that many years ago, its beautiful fine work.

We Called it Going to Church

Crescent Beach has been the subject of this blog several times before. It is amazing that all one has to do is walk just a little bit further and in this crowded city, one can sit on one’s own.

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Both eagles and loons were heard but the heron was the bird of the day. There were several of them watching walkers from rocks just in the water. The tide was in all the way. I love the call they make when they take off and fly – kind of like a rusty gate creaking open, a complaintive sound.

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A recent finished object, well objects. Gotland mittens, hand spun. You can still smell and feel the lanolin in these despite several very hot washes. They should prove warm.

And a bit of weaving from a warp over a year old. Just to get it off the loom I used up scraps of sock yarn in a twill of some sort. It came out better than expected, it should work up as a couple of bags I think.

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Found Objects

ImageThis has travelled bit. Hopefully its owner isn’t too upset at its loss. From the wander at Crescent Beach this past weekend.  There is always something interesting. This was clearly propped up by other wanderers. (This beach is not likely to receive much debris from the Japanese tsunami, there are many landforms between here and there. At least that is what local media are saying around stuff washing up on the beaches of the gulf islands and Vancouver Island. The bike’s travels likely started out much more locally.)

While yet one more knitted hat blocks and dries, a look into the stash bin revealed some woven bits that were waiting to be made into something. I found some stuff from back at the beginning of my rigid heddle play.

IMG_1749A quick zip of the sewing machine and this strip of plain weave cotton fabric becomes six wash cloths. Warp is…something…weft is hand spun organic cotton, done up as a two ply. Very soft, next to skin soft. Hopefully they will continue to shrink as they are washed – other experiments in plain weave and cotton seem to do so.

IMG_1752A bit of saori style weaving with different remnents of handpsun wools and silks. Turning it into a cowl minimizes the various width and gauge changes – sheer luck that the piece was just the right size. I blame Mason -Dixon Knitting for reviving the cowl idea. While this might be a gift, I keep wearing it around the house…

Another found item – a very simple recipe for rosemary and olive oil shortbread. This might be the perfect activity for another cold day here. Not just winter coming, oh yes, that holiday, oh what’s it called? It’s on its way too…

Winter is Coming! (make a blanket, quick)

Image 5Sorry, too many episodes of Game of Thrones apparently. A series which has lost its charm for me actually. Too much gore, too many killings, just too much. Anyhow, Grant took this recently on a local hike and I couldn’t resist.

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Off the loom, it is about four metres of 40 cm wide yardage. Not quite big enough on its own to be a blanket but I will finish the ubiquitous blue up completely making a couple of panels to sew on to it. It’s an easy point twill, (hard to make out I know) and should be a warm cover. It may benefit from lining it with some fleece maybe, that remains to be seen. I have vigorously washed and blocked it and it stood up very well. There is a slow food movement? This is slow fabric. Fun.

Still with the birds. Our unusual, but not unheard of, cold snap has continued, with accompanying clear bright skies. Today at Crescent Beach the ducks filled the ocean, hundreds and hundreds of them, murmuring to themselves. We had never seen anything like it. I guess the ponds are frozen over. Mallards and wood ducks were what we made out, there may have been other kinds too.

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Lots of these fellow too, charging up and down the shore. Amazing how few people out today, I guess this is cold for here. (The rest of the continent, socked in with blizzards gives us a razzberry. )

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