Monday, 3 March 2014

Project updates

 I've been doing lots of this.  It's the part of the homework which feels like work.  It's the labeling and mounting of the skeins.  I've got starter labels on them, but they didn't have enough info, so I'm having to redo all the labels, do the write ups or headers and mount them on pages.   I'm about half done with the relabeling and mounting.  

When I am tired of doing that, I'm spinning for a possible project.  I started off planning and researching.  I ended up with two options for my final project.  There is a 3rd possibility in the wings, but I'm not really thrilled with that one.  It requires knitting and well, not so interested in that right now.   I've done some sampling and testing.  I realized that my test amounts  for timing  show that I'm slightly pushing it to get my currently planned final 75 hour project in that time.   As well, I'm borderline on practical amounts of needed materials in my stash.  It would be fine if I could just order more, but so far the shop where I generally order my fibre is out of what I'd need, should I run out.  There are options though, but it means changes that I'd have to research and think about.

I've not been able to find flax strick locally.   I have one small strick which I picked up last summer, plus the lovely bit that Wendy processed herself and gave me to try out last year at FOOL.  I have a whole pound of line flax which is made into a thick, ropey top.  It's supposed to be easy to spin, which is is, I guess.  However it's a bit slower than spinning off a distaff as there are lots of small, fuzzy bits in it, which need to be picked out if possible.  At least it's line flax though.

The hank of linen singles on the right is the result of almost 6 hours of spinning... a measly 350 yards of thread about the grist of 8/2 cotton.   The loose bundle on the left is strick, spun from a distaff, which is definitely more even than the thread from the line flax top, but also a slightly thinner grist.  It's 210 yards but only took 2 - 3 hours to spin.   I don't think I'll use it in this project, but it's a nice comparison on size, consistency and spinning speed.
I've got a few more hours of flax spun on the wheel right now.  When I get this bobbin full enough to stop, I'll have to decide whether I'll be using option A or B.  As long as I have enough materials, I don't mind slimming down my original project a bit and my second choice is almost as intriguing.  Either choice though I have to quickly decide whether I'm spinning the loom waste or dressing the loom with a test project and tying on to save hours and materials. 

I do like the smell of water retted flax though - sort of like winter stored hay.

While I've been slogging away at this, the 2 day shower project the guys started has turned into a 5 plus day project.  The ancient shower stall had to be replaced.  The duct tape keeping it from leaking was still holding up, but the rest of it was starting to give up the ghost.  It was supposed to be removed on the Friday and the new one installed on the Saturday.  However, it ended up being removed on Thursday because a few things weren't clear and had to be checked out ahead of time.   Instead of it being an easy install, like every other project here, it's been a major job.  Ceramic tile had to come out and then be replaced to even up the floor.  The old plumbing had been installed on the outside of the walls and had to be moved to behind the wall in order to fit a new shower stall in as the old size was no longer available.  As well, the fixture used for the taps wasn't an actual shower fixture, but looks like something from a hand sink or laundry taps.  That meant the whole blocking and sizing changed.  Then it turned out the drywall was buckled in places, so it had to be replaced.  The shower is in, the drain just has to be hooked up and then the silicone sealant applied, which I've been told needs 24 hours to cure.  There will still be a couple of drywall seams to finish and some painting, but the shower will be useable.  The nice thing is that the new shower looks fabulous.  Even though it is bigger, the clear glass actually lets light in and the room doesn't seem quite so dark and dingy.  Plus, the stall design actually gives more floor space to the room, which makes the bathroom seem larger.

1 comment:

Sharon said...

I'm so impressed by all you have to do to finish your course. It is beautiful but overwhelming to me. The shower might be less overwhelming. Nah, it's overwhelming too :)