Sunday, December 28, 2008

A few days at home

.... and a few things were made.

I made these shoes/slippers after seeing this.

They are made from a felted recycled sweater with a pattern I modified from Martha's link above.

I made a second pair for my Mum.

I finished this little tartan bag today. I bought some lovely tartan mohair offcuts when I was in Scotland and this is one of the pieces that I felted and sewed this bag. The handles are recycled from a belt. I got the idea for this from The Wheel Magazine from Ashford that I really like. They wove the fabric on an a small Ashford loom and shrunk it, whereas I already had this piece.

I also have been doing a bit of spinning with some babydoll/angora and made this function over form niddy noddy to wind it off the bobbin. I spotted the t pieces when we were in the hardware store the other day buying parts for the LOVELY NEW WATER PUMP and Simon found the pipe so it got made in less than 10 minutes. ...yes I know it looks like it but I don't care. It works just great and will do until I make a nice driftwood-from-the-beach-model.

And last but not least a pic of the sheep waiting for some hay as the meadow is STILL full of SNOW.

More pics on flickr

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

I have been conspicuous in my absence lately. Sorry about that.....

No excuses really apart from being away in the UK.

Anyway "Merry Christmas" (or insert your own favourite seasonal greeting). Around here I like to think we celebrate the longest night/our wedding anniversary on the 23rd/ as well as Christmas which really stretches it out !
Here is our little shepherdess and her lamb on top of the tree.

And this is what we got each other this year.

Wow !

It's a water pump. We are very pleased to have it as it means we have water again. Our recent prolonged cold snap, ( -5 to -9 for a week or so which is COLD for us wimpy west coasters) caused it's demise and left us dry for a while.

Amazing how a few days without water really make you appreciate how important it is.

Now the temperature is a balmy zero and we are bathed in winter sunshine. Just like the day we got married, 13 years ago. It was here at Palm Beach.

And looked very like this, minus the snow.And here is another shot of the beach, .....looks almost tropicalWe had a nice walk along the beach this morning while the turkey was cooking and we plan on relaxing the rest of the day.

Hope you enjoy whatever you are doing today !

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Weaving..... and Leaving

Tomorrow I fly off to the UK for a couple of weeks.

Before I go I thought I'd squeeze in this post.

A couple of posts ago I mentioned that I had put up my loom in the basement.

Here are the first projects. I warped for two rugs with some recycled, dyed cotton that I had.

I used Jane Stafford's method for warping back to front. I don't have a raddle so I used a comb I had for my knitting machine. It worked really well.
Here's the first rug,

.....and again.
I used some assorted rug wool that I had hanging around for the weft.

I changed the tie ups for the second rug and played around with some twill patterns.

Here is a close up of the twill pattern.Are those Yeti feet weaving away ?Actually these are my warm and cosy socks my mother-in-law, Jean, sent back with Simon when he visited last time. I love 'em !

Here is the first rug, off the loom,and the second.

This is before tidying and finishing, but you get the general idea.

See you in a couple of weeks !

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Guy Fawkes Night

I can't let November 5th go by without a mention of that great British alternative to Halloween, Guy Fawkes Night.
You know, that nice family tradition where kids stuff a few old clothes with straw to make an effigy of an old fellow who tried unsuccessfully to blow up the Houses of Parliment, who is later put on top of a blazing fire as friends and neighbours gather round eating sausages and baked potatoes amid the setting off of potentially eye or limb injuring fireworks.
It's great fun !
We didn't really do the effigy thing but we had sausages and a little fire out back.

I took this picture in the sunshine a few days ago.
We have lots of ladybirds/bugs around at the moment.

And just to show the beautiful colours of Fall/Autumn,
these lovely yellow maple leaves.
Our Forsythia bush turns this vibrant red colour.

Please note, this post was bilingual, .....Canadian and British.

Monday, October 20, 2008

The Wonders of Weaving

Look what I've been doing for the last 4 days.

We were lucky enough to have Jane Stafford come over from Salt Spring to teach us a 3 day weaving course called Lacey Places,

You can find out more about Jane here,

.......but there's more,

We got an extra bonus day of her great course, Honing your weaving skills.

Of course as a novice weaver my weaving skills will take a lot of honing, hah hah !!

but Jane is a fantastic teacher and I came away from the 4 days with all these lovely samples that I WOVE !

Plus an amazing amount of knowledge and some of Jane's passion for weaving that she shared with us.

So much so that this is what I did today !

The old work horse is up and functional. I bought some cord and just have to make new ties for the treadles but other than that she's ready to go.

She bears a lot of scars but came by them honestly as she has been around since 1944 and has woven many items through the years. I am very proud to be the owner of this LeClerc Mira loom which is a piece of Canadian history and tradition. The original owner, (I am it's second owner), bought it through a program where the Searle Grain Company traveled through the prairies during the 1940's and provided weaving instruction and equipment for the women in rural communities.

BTW there are more pics on flickr of the individual samples and the rabbits are still not talking to each other.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Wabbity Woes

Up until now Sally and Saffy have lived their whole lives together in peaceful harmony.
Until today that is,
This morning they woke up and decided they really couldn't stand the sight of each other ANY MORE.
Worse than that they spent the morning beating the crap out of each other to the extent that Saffy has a couple of nicks under her nose and Sally has a chunk out of her lip.
Of course we were horrified and sad at the same time. What happened to our sweet lovely Buns ?
Hormones that's what. So consequently we went out today and bought another cage so they will be separate at night and we will reno the hutch into a single-rabbit-duplex tomorrow. Here they are, Saffy gets the new digs as it somehow is bigger, although we thought we were getting the same unit. She actually prefers the old digs and jumps in there to eat Sally's hay at any opportunity.
Now we're considering seriously the thought of breeding them as that would take their minds off the Bunny Welter Weight Extreme Fighting Contest and give them something else to think about.

In happier news here is a skein I plied up yesterday.

And some lovely blue Babydoll/Angora mix. There are three little skeins that I will ply together

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Tent City

As you can see The Buns have their tents set up in the garden. Although they have one each they like to sit together.
Apparently they are protesting the lack of camping around here. We got the tents at Fall Fair, courtesy of Rainbow Valley Pet & Farm Supplies in Powell River. They are supposed to be for cats, ....but sssh, don't tell.

Here is Sally in hers,

And Saffy in hers. They are considering taking up Campanology, as the tents come complete with bells.

And one last picture of some geese heading south, (if you can spot them in the picture, that is !)

Reminds us we're in Canada, eh !

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Fall Fair

Due to some boring technical difficulties I haven't been able to edit pics to put up on the blog but today I found the time to work around that problem.

I couldn't let the Powell River Fall Fair pass by without a blogentry.
(I just made that a word ! I like the way it sounds)
Especially as it has occupied so much of my time lately and therefore the other part of my excuse for not blogging.
The first Fall Fair was over 70 years ago and it is an important part of our community. It is hosted by the local Agricultural Association.

For this year I think the best part was that our co-ordinator, Val, persuaded the City of Powell River to sponsor a free park and ride from the Town Centre Mall to the fair on a city bus as well as handy dart service to and from people's homes. So a big thank you to Val for the GREAT job she did as well as Mayor Alsgard and the City of Powell River for rising to the occasion and recognizing the need for accessible transit in our community...
..... (Gets down from soap box)

Here is our little granary wagon set up. You can see the community oven on the left hand side.

Here is a picture of the batches of bread and scones we made for the first day of the fair.

We sold them all and came home to repeat the process again for the next day.

Helene and I set up our fibre arts booth next to the granary. We had handwoven pieces, spinning supplies, knitted and felted items.The buns came along to help, (they always draw a crowd !) We were set up next to Manzanita and their lovely apple press. Sall and Saff liberated this apple before it got to the press.Here is Amber with her colourful hand dyed clothing for big and small people.

And here are Zoe and her dog during a sheep herding demonstration.

There were all kinds of events happening at the fair this year. You can see more pictures here

Thanks for those Kevin !

And even a movie here at the Peak.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Happy First Of Fall

Yes, today is the first day of Fall.
Just so you know it's official, a little patch of Fall Crocuses in the garden came to announce it.

We've still got lots of colour in the garden with these rowan trees.

The birds just love these berries.

We just got back yesterday from Coombsfest 2008, (a.k.a. Nancy and Dany's wedding celebration).

They live here, so you can imagine it was a great spot for the party.

We made up the Powell River Contingent, so here we are enjoying the day.

The Buns got to run around on the table that the model boat people use. (ssssh, don't tell them !)

Tika is relaxing, as she does most of the time.And Saffy is sitting by the lake that Dany built.

It was a great party and nice to see friends, old and new. We all enjoyed it thoroughly.

Thanks Nancy and Dany !

Now we're back, and as always, "It's nice to be home".

Saturday, September 13, 2008

A Day At Home

FINALLY, I got to spend a day at home, ALL day, without having to go anywhere.

So this is what I did.

Not in any particular order.
I dyed some Romney locks, some greens and some brown and blues.

I plyed up this skein.

And carded these batts.

I was on a roll, but had to stop to become a baker and get ready for the Open Air Market tomorrow. !

I like the title for this post. It sounds like it should be a chapter from Louisa May Alcott's Little Women. A favourite book of mine, (well, one of many anyway !)