I wasn't able to go to Trillium Wars this year as my husband's work schedule made it impossible. Instead, I used the time to lead a dye workshop for our local guild. There were three of us leading workshops: one on acid dyes and the other two of us on natural dyes. The idea was for some display later this year, the guild has chosen a 7th Anniversary theme and wanted to link the projects displayed by colour. So we had in mind copper mordants, but of course, that doesn't really give copper colours. Instead we were both working to dye with not enough supplies and pots to dye these enormous quantities of yarn people brought without any warning to us. Interestingly enough, the gals who brought the 20 year old, unidentified skeins from the backs of closets had the most uninspiring results. The fresh, clean, interesting yarns and rovings had spectacular results.
I brought my pre-mordanted sample skeins with me. One vat was a cochineal extract. I was the only one who put in an alum mordanted bit and I did so as a sample. I wondered what the colour differences would be between the extract and the freshly ground bugs. The extract on alum was fushia/purple. The vat with the freshly ground bugs - huge 30% wog gave an awesome red!
Other colours were dock seeds - first sample, greenish yellow and Golden Marguerite - which gave a rich gold, copper brown and dark brown depending on the mordants used.
The new warp weighted loom is good to go. I stained it and finished it ironically enough with Behr's Scandinavian Tung Oil. Somehow I thought it was somewhat appropriate, but I was in an odd mood that day. Then I started doing the tablet woven header and the warp. After the first few threads with a makeshift rig with my warping board resting on the sofa, with 2 c-clamps clinging to a table stored behind it, I just moved the clamps to the loom and went from there.
What have I learned? Don't make the tablet weaving bit to high as it was a nuisance and I couldn't actually see what I was tablet weaving. It's a bit... mmmm... well, of an inexperienced looking tablet woven header. As well, size your warp threads before you wind them. I had to make up two batches of size, when I think I should have only needed one. Fitting the whole warp at once into my pot was interesting to say the least.
The warp is finally dry and I can sew it onto the top beam. Of course, my darned arthritic hip has decided to act up making me hobble. As well, my brother in law and his family decided to visit. I really should get hubby to invite them for a BBQ or something but there are so many projects scattered around the house right now.. well you get the picture.