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It’s been a busy last 3 weeks, but it’s time to catch up the blog a bit.

The “Inside Out” show opened at the Confluence Gallery in Twisp on Saturday, August 3.  My dad, brother and sister-in-law were still here for the last weekend of the chamber music festival, so we all went down to the gallery the day before to see the show before the official opening.  The actual opening was very well attended so it was a festive atmosphere!

Inside Out opening 8/3/13

Inside Out opening 8/3/13

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more folks at the opening

The following weekend, Rick’s sister and a friend of hers came over to see the Confluence Gallery show, our exhibit up at the Lost River Winery tasting room, and go on the annual Home Tour which is organized by the Confluence Gallery.  They request that people not take pictures of the homes on the tour, so I am afraid I have none to show.  The theme this year was “Eclectic Methow” (eclectic:  deriving ideas, style, or taste from a broad and diverse range of sources) and we did see some very interesting homes and sites.

Here are a few more pictures I took at the gallery:

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one of my rugs on chair in background

There must be some magic to having one of my rugs displayed on that chair – as of yesterday, I have sold three rugs off that chair!  I believe all of them were sold to people visiting the valley from out of town (I know one was shipped to California).

Summer Wednesdays mean jazz night in the beer garden at the Twisp River Pub.  Last week we went down for dinner and music with the Pasayten Quartet and Laura Love on vocals.  She not only has a great voice, she is a real entertainer!

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The weekend of the Home Tour (August 10-11) there were strong thunderstorms with wind and heavy rain at times, mostly at night.  We actually had a beautiful sunny day for the home tour itself, thank goodness.  But this resulted in major mudslides up in the North Cascades that shut down Highway 20 for a little over a week!    It is reported they had to remove 3000 dump truck loads of gooey mud and rocks, plus repair guard rails, set up new drainage systems, and repair damaged roadway.

We drove over to the Coast on Sunday August 18th for a family gathering, and had to go over Stevens Pass, which was actually fine until we hit the little towns on the west side.  Between low speed limits and traffic signals, it got pretty clogged up.  But we made it to Camano Island to get together with my Dad, my two siblings and their spouses (sister and brother in law came from Colorado) and one of my nieces and her fiance, who had flown in from Texas.  It was totally worth the drive over to see everyone!

clan gathering 1

clan gathering 1

clan gathering 2

clan gathering 2

They re-opened the pass the next morning, so we were able to drive home over the “North Cross” highway.  The lakes behind the dams (power for Seattle City Light) were an amazing milky blue-green color, presumably due to all the silt in the water from the heavy rains.

Ross Lake - August 19, 2013

Ross Lake – August 19, 2013

Washington Pass Overlook

Washington Pass Overlook – headwaters of the Methow Valley

I have been weaving a lot of rugs, but will save those pictures for the next post.  It’s time to move on with my day!

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Summertime has brought us a number of social events.  A few weeks ago there was a fundraising dinner for Confluence Gallery & Art Center, held at Pipestone Canyon Ranch (over the hills east of Twisp).  With about 150 people in attendance, it was a lively and festive evening in a beautiful setting, with good food, good conversation, and both silent and live art auctions.

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Some people may have gone home with something they didn’t absolutely need

P1020847but obviously folks were there to support Confluence on its 25th anniversary, and in fact I heard they raised over $25,000!

A week later we attended an outdoor dinner party, down by the Twisp River, that had grown from a guest list of 16 to over 40!  Unfortunately my pictures came out too blurry (not because of imbibing, but because of low light levels….honest!).  Hosted by Canadians, attended by Canadians and even a couple from England, and of course the local contingent.

This past week my family has been here for all 5 concerts of the Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival (July 25 – August 3).  My Dad drove over in his RV and is camped in the front yard.  Brother and sister-in-law are here as well and we have weathered 100 degree weather, turning to cool and thundershowers this week.

MV Chamber Music 2013 2

MV Chamber Music 2013 3

Tomorrow a new show opens at Confluence Gallery, and Rick has several pieces in it – me, a couple of new rugs.  The title of the show is Inside Out (“An exploration and celebration of designed interior and exterior space, and the objects and forms we use to define them..”) He helped with the setup this week and took a few pictures:

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I have been spending a lot of time weaving rugs the last couple of weeks, since returning from the weaving conference in Bellingham.  I used up the last of the warp I had on that loom doing these:

"Ruglets" R143 & R144

“Ruglets” R143 & R144

R145 - sold last weekend at Winthrop Gallery

R145 – sold last weekend at Winthrop Gallery

"Ruglets" R146 & R147

“Ruglets” R146 & R147

"Ruglets" R148 & R149

“Ruglets” R148 & R149

R150 - Pendleton wool shirting selvages

R150 – Pendleton wool shirting selvages

I am now working my way through my still rather large collection of Pendleton blanket and shirting selvages – trying to make some headway on using up materials I gathered at the mill outlets over the last several years.  When I don’t have much of something left, I am either working it into a full size rug along with other colors and textures, or making “ruglets”.  These are about 18″ x 30″ and I have found them useful around our house, at least, as hearth mats, bench mats, cat mats, small floor mats, or whatever.

Around July 1st I wound a new rug warp (about 47 yards) onto the sectional beam, and tied it on to the existing threading and pulled it through to the front beam.  No sleying and threading, I love it!  I also like the colors in the new warp.

rug warp June 2013

happiness is a new warp!

I had wound new warps for placemats (on Kingston the 32″ Macomber) and undulating twill towels (on Mother Mary’s loom, the 40″ Mac at the guild room) before leaving for conference.  Got the one for Kingston tied on, pulled through and wound onto the back beam, also the first week of July.  I am not sure when I will start actually weaving on these, but here is a picture with some of the fabrics I will be using:

placemat warp and fabrics ready for action

placemat warp and fabrics ready for action

Then it was back to rug weaving.  I am having a lot of fun combining different types and colors of the Pendleton selvages, and using up my stash in a creative way.  I finished these last week before leaving for the Coast on July 5th:

R151 - pretty much the same as R150 at the end of the previous warp

R151 – pretty much the same as R150 at the end of the previous warp

R152 - a small mat using up the last of these 2 colors

R152 – a small mat using up the last of these 2 colors

R153 - gray/teal shirting selvages alternated with bright "worms" at the ends

R153 – gray/teal shirting selvages alternated with bright “worms” at the ends

R154 - same approach, different colored "worms:

R154 – same approach, different colored “worms”

R155 - alternated with "worms" throughout, but changing colors

R155 – alternated with “worms” throughout, but changing colors

My rug numbers, by the way, (Rxxx) indicate the number of rugs I have woven since I bought my first loom about 6 years ago.  The woman I bought it from wove nothing but rugs, and she got me started.  That was all I did the first 6 months or so.

This week I finished three more, very similar to the ones I did back in June before weaving conference.

R156 - using same materials as R142

R156 – using same materials as R142

R157 & R158 - same materials as R140 and using up the last of it, too!

R157 & R158 – same materials as R140 and using up the last of it, too!

In between, we went to the coast to visit family & friends, and celebrate Rick’s 65th birthday.

Rick's 65th 1Rick's 65th 2

It’s been lovely here in the valley – we have had enough rain on and off to keep things relatively green.  There have been a couple of really hot spells (high 90’s) alternated with temps in the 80’s, thundershowers, etc.  We drove back into the valley last Sunday, coming over the North Cascades Hwy, to encounter a total downpour by the time we reached Winthrop!  By later that evening, however, the storm had moved off and it was back to warm and dry.

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The last couple of weeks have passed in a whirlwind of activity.  It was all for the good, but still kind of intense.

My dad decided to move from his home near Anacortes to a retirement inn located in La Conner, and set a 2-week timeframe to  do it.  Moving Day was set for May 31.

Initially, Rick and I went over with truck and cargo trailer and helped him do a lot of sorting and packing, things he was taking with him and things he wanted to get rid of (he wanted to empty the house).  We hauled a load of furniture back to the valley that he would no longer have room for, and that we would love to have.  Then we rented a storage locker in Winthrop and moved some of our things there, as this involved a change-out of our living room furniture.

My sister from Colorado, my brother and sister-in-law from Camano, and Rick and I converged on Anacortes on May 30 and we were all there for the big event – Moving Day!  Dad had hired a mover but it still took all of us to do the last minute organizing and packing, setting more things aside for Goodwill or equivalent, and then the unpacking at the other end.  But it went very well and we got a lot done in just a couple of days.

Here we are, tired but happy, at dinner that evening in La Conner:

Moving Day - May 31, 2013

Moving Day – May 31, 2013

During the week we were at home between Packing Day and Moving Day, I had some appointments and shopping errands to do in Wenatchee (about 100 miles from home, so I try to organize as many things into one trip as possible).  On the way home, I passed a vacant lot on the outskirts of Twisp where people put vehicles for sale by owner.  There was an Airstream trailer that looked to be in decent shape, so I peeked through the windows and was sufficiently intrigued to tell Rick about it when I got home.

Now, I have been saying for years that “some day” I wanted to have an Airstream trailer for when we are able to take longer trips to see more of the USA and Canada. Or maybe take it south for “winter breaks” of a month or two.  We have looked at new ones and I have studied the floor plans.  But I really knew that we wouldn’t be able to afford one – even used ones at dealerships (10 years old or younger) are pretty spendy.  I figured that a bigger trailer than our pop-up camping trailer, with more room and amenities (a bathroom!) would be in our future, but not an Airstream.

Anyway, long story made short, we met the sellers that evening and looked it over.  It is a 1973 International Overlander (the latter meaning the 27′ long model).   It looked pretty good and the price was WAY right.  We decided the next morning to go for it (this was the morning we were leaving for Anacortes).  It turned out there was another interested party that had made an offer the night before, so we had to counter somewhat, but in the end it was ours and we agreed to meet with them after we got back from Moving Day to close the deal.

Sorry, dear family, for springing this on you!  It all happened so fast and then we were embroiled in moving.  We just put it out of our minds over the weekend.

So this past Monday, we closed the deal.  Tuesday morning we got the new license plate and tabs and registration.  The first thing we did is tow it 2 blocks to Coyote Ridge Automotive and get a new wiring harness put in that is wired directly for the receptacle on the truck.  The trailer had some kind of old 7-prong plug that we had no adapter for (neither did the sellers, and the tabs hadn’t been renewed since May 2006 – they had used it as a “guest cabin” – but how they towed it without turn signals etc I don’t want to know).  Anyway all the exterior lights (brake, turn, running) and the electric brakes are in good working order.  Then we brought it home:

as found 1

as found 2

This is going to be a Project that we will work on for a couple of years.  We took it on faith that “everything works” except for the air conditioner, but we are taking it over to Airstream of Spokane at the end of next week for a check-over.  The interior is in pretty decent shape, although very 1970’s (can you say “orange formica”?)  The carpet is tatty and we will probably put down Marmoleum (old style linoleum) eventually.  The windows have a film between the 2 layers of glass that has cracked and glazed, so that will be our major project.  We have already found a lot of info on the web about removing and renovating the windows, including new window tint film.  In fact, the DIY (Do It Yourself) Channel had a 10-part series a couple of years ago where they completely restored a 1970 Airstream, and they are available online as YouTube videos.

At 27′ it is probably the longest model I would have considered (new or old) – a 25′ would have been my ideal – or even a 23′ would have worked.  But when you are inside it sure feels comfortable, and there is a ton of storage.  So for long trips or staying one place for an extended period, it should be great.

Stay tuned for periodic Airstream postings with before and after pictures!

As for the title of this post:  we celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary this year – March 17, 1973.  This being a 1973 Airstream, I told Rick this must mean the 40th anniversary is the “Aluminum Anniversary”!

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We went down to College Station, TX two weeks ago to meet up with my sister’s family and see their younger daughter defend her dissertation and become a Ph.D.  Her subject has to do with Lyme disease, and she is in the Dept. of Microbial & Molecular Pathogenesis – needless to say , we didn’t understand half of what her talk was about!  But it was a great visit with family, my sister and brother-in-law, both nieces and one of their best friends from childhood.

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And of course, no matter where you go, there it is:

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It was a pretty nice little wool shop, actually – had some local alpaca products, although none of it came home with me – I need more knitting and spinning fiber like I need a hole in the head.

Since we came home, spring is definitely coming along – bunch grasses growing in the yard, lots of shooting stars this year too.  Our friends from Lake Quinault came over for 4 nights and brought their bicycles.  The day they meant to go out for a long ride was, of course, the day a storm moved through!  Lots of wind, cold, rain and sleet down here in the valley and snow up higher.  We made a fire and settled down with books, instead.

I have been weaving away on the Bronson lace style of placemats to finish up the warp I put on before we went to Texas.  This time I am using cotton quilting type fabrics, cut in 1/2″ strips and used singly.  The placemats are coming out a lot better, not as thick and with more pattern repeats.  I should finish them up today or tomorrow, meanwhile here are some “progress photos”.  I used my “new” Wolf cutter to cut the strips – it slid through 8 layers of fabric like a hot knife through butter.  Lovely.  No distortion, goes as straight as an arrow – I love it.

fabric 1 being cut

fabric 1 being cut

fabric 1 being woven

fabric 1 being woven

fabric 3 and cotton yarn used for tabby

fabric 3 and cotton yarn used for tabby

fabric 3 cut into strips

fabric 3 cut into strips

fabric 3 being woven

fabric 3 being woven

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Last week we took off for a road trip to Port Townsend and Lake Quinault on the Olympic Pensinsula.  We were celebrating our 40th anniversary, and visiting family & friends.  We stayed the first night at my Dad’s house in Anacortes, and my brother and sister-in-law came up from Camano Island and we all cooked a meal together.  Nice relaxing evening and a good start to the trip.

We stayed 2 nights in Port Townsend in a little cottage down on Discovery Bay.  No TV, beach right below for walking.  Very quiet and I read an entire Martha Grimes mystery (found on the shelf in the cottage) in 2 days.  We had some wonderful meals in Port Townsend.  Being somewhat Asian-food deprived over here in the valley, we really enjoyed Hanazono Asian Noodle, one of my favorite finds from being out there at knitting retreat in the fall.  For our actual anniversary on March 17th, we went to The Fountain Cafe (they don’t have their own website).  Since they don’t really “do” St. Patrick’s Day, it was a quiet and intimate setting for our dinner together.

40 years! think of that

40 years! think of that

...and we still like each other!

…and we still like each other!

On Monday we headed out to Lake Quinault, where our longtime friends own and operate a small cabin resort on the north shore of the lake – actually inside the national park boundaries:  Lochaerie Resort.  They moved out there a couple of years ago and tore down and completely rebuilt the main house for their new home.  Rick had built bathroom vanities for their 2 upstairs bathrooms, so we had a full truck and he had work to do installing once we got there.  I’ll wait for photos until the countertops and sinks are installed (we will be back out there in June), but the cabinets are clear fir and looked great.

A major storm system moved through Washington this week, and by the second day there were strong winds and lashing sheets of rain coming down – this is the rainforest, after all.  Not a good day for walking but a good day for knitting (me), conversation, reading, after dinner card games and movies.  And hanging a bear skin rug in the Lochaerie office:

bear rug 1

bear rug 2

When we left Wednesday morning, it was actually snowing (a wet snow) at the lake and there was plenty of snow up in the mountains all around.  Beautiful!

Dropped off my new tool, an older Wolf Clipper round-knife cutter, at C.H. Holderby’s in Seattle on the way over, and picked it up all tuned up on the way home.

Wolf Clipper

I bought it on eBay about a month ago, for a fraction of what a new one costs, and it ran fine – but, as pictured above, it had no safety guard.  Rick was sure, probably with good reason, that I was in danger of cutting off one or more fingers!  So we called Wolf Machine Co. and ordered the safety guard and Rick installed it.  But it still needed some adjustments to both the guard and the honing stones.  When we picked it up on Thursday, one of the tech guys told me it would outlive me, and since it is probably already at least 30-40 years old, I think that sounds like one fine machine.

I will use it to cut through multiple layers of fabric to produce strips for weaving rugs and other things.

 

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I have had many things going at once lately, but it feels good to be moving projects forward and also spending time with friends.  I love the idiomatic phrase, as defined on Wiktionary:

Etymology
Describing a blacksmith working on several pieces at the same time.
Noun
irons in the fire
  1. tasks in progress.
Usage notes
May be used with a positive connotation, e.g. “have other irons in the fire” (other projects are available if this one fails), or with a negative connotation, e.g. “too many irons in the fire” (overwhelmed by having too many tasks).

Weaving

Several weeks ago I put a warp on my “Baby Mac” portable workshop loom to try out an idea for placemats.

Bronson placemat b

The draft is based on Bronson lace, believe it or not, and came out of an older issue of Handwoven magazine.  I used 8/4 cotton carpet warp for the warp, and also for the hems and the tabby weft between shots of fabric strips.  The fun came with trying out a variety of fabrics to see what worked and what was less successful.  Also, I finished my placemat for our guild’s challenge project, which is due in April – we exchanged mugs or tea cups, and the challenge was to weave a placemat or set of coasters inspired by the mug you drew (which will then be given to the owner of the mug).

Here are some of the finished mats – they shrank up to 20% in length after washing and drying!

cotton quilting fabric in 1" strips

cotton quilting fabric in 1″ strips

heavy cotton drapery fabric in 1" strips - hard to fold!

heavy cotton drapery fabric in 1″ strips – hard to fold!

heavy fabric, may have been tencel not cotton - a pain to work with

heavy fabric, may have been tencel not cotton – a pain to work with

an old cotton sheet in 3/4" strips, good thickness and pattern

an old cotton sheet in 3/4″ strips, good thickness and pattern

I will be doing more of these but may move the project onto my full size loom at the guild meeting room.

Knitting

I needed a simple carry-around or car knitting project, and settled on the Shawl Collared Cowl by Alana Dakos of Never Not Knitting.  Actually I have knit two of these now.  The first is softer and more comfortable and my favorite – I can wear it over a long sleeve T like a scarf – but the Icelandic one would be great on a cold winter day tucked inside the neck of a coat.

using Ella Rae "Kamelsoft" 75% merino/25% camel

using Ella Rae “Kamelsoft” 75% merino/25% camel

using Tongue River Farm Icelandic from very old stash!

using Tongue River Farm Icelandic from very old stash!

Also finished a sweater I have had underway for a couple of months:  Bedford by Michelle Wang (also found in Brooklyn Tweed Fall 2011 collection). I used Cornelia Tuttle Hamilton “Heaven’s Hand Wool Classic” in the dark cherry colorway.  I love, love, love this sweater, it is so comfortable and “just right”.

Bedford pullover Mar 2013

Socializing

We had out of town guests for 4 nights last weekend, and as they are very self-sufficient (having lived in the valley previously) it was an enjoyable and relaxing time.  The weather was mixed – cold and foggy some days, gloriously sunny others – and we got out for some nice walks.  Spring is definitely around the corner, although there is still plenty of snow on the ground here.

Last week there was the monthly Methow Conservancy First Tuesday program at the Twisp River Pub.  The place was packed, maybe 200 people!  And they were serving a buffet dinner beforehand- it was kind of a mad house.  Anyway we lucked out and found a place to sit with friends, and had a great time.  The speaker was David Moskowitz, who has just come out with a new book called Wolves in the Land of Salmon (the land of salmon being the greater Pacific Northwest).  Fabulous photography.

Other People’s Knitting Dept

One of the women who took my beaded cuff class has really taken off with it.  Mostly, she is coming up with her own pattern charts now.  Thought I would share some pictures of her cuffs, as seen at our weekly Thursday evening knitting get-together:

with a thumbhole!

with a thumbhole!

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Sara's cuffs

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The Old Guard

We went over to The Coast last weekend for 4 nights, for a variety of reasons.  One of my reasons was to spend a couple of days down at the Madrona Fiberarts Winter Retreat in Tacoma, WA.   It started off small in Gig Harbor many years ago, and I used to go every year.  Learned a lot there (classes were mostly knitting-oriented).  It got big enough to move to the Hotel Murano in Tacoma at least 5 years ago.  I haven’t been for a while, because I have chosen to go up to Orcas Island for a spinning week with Judith Mackenzie immediately following Madrona – can’t do both!  But this year I didn’t go to “camp” so I thought it would be fun to head down to Madrona, not to take classes, but to see my friends and go to the market.

I was totally lame and took no pictures.  But I did have lunch with friends and go to the market on Thursday and Friday.  Mostly behaved myself, although I did buy Sarah Anderson’s new book, The Spinner’s Book of Yarn Designs.  Sarah was in the demonstration area outside the market on Friday, and I spoke to her at length.  Lovely woman with boundless energy and lots of good ideas.  She showed me several pieces of woven cloth which she is doing with over-twisted yarns that got my creative juices flowing!

There were many great vendors there – independent, small dyers (Sincere Sheep was a favorite, Dicentra Designs, Chameleon Colorworks, also The Artful Ewe), yarns sourced from local, small flocks and/or rare breeds by Jorstad Creek and Toots LeBlanc & Co.  I almost bought some Gotland/Finn Sheep cross yarn from Jorstad Creek – it had the most amazing luster and hand.  But they are in Olympia, WA and I see them at knitting retreat, so there will be another chance in the future.  Some of the “big players” were there, and some of my favorite local yarn shops (Acorn Street Shop, Churchmouse Yarns and Teas from Bainbridge Island, who were sharing a booth with the designer Jared Flood of Brooklyn Tweed).  It was great fun.

While I was down in Tacoma, Rick spent some time with his mom and sister, and got together with some of his woodworking buddies from the Seattle area.  On Saturday evening, there was a special event at Northwest Woodworkers’ Gallery in downtown Seattle, to honor Evert Sodergren.  Rick was one of the founding members of this gallery back in the day (late 1970’s).  They moved from Pioneer Square to a new location in Belltown last year, next door to Urban Hardwoods.  It is a much better location for them, we think.

Evert Sodergren is a 4th-generation studio furniture-maker, now in his early 90’s and (finally!) retired.  In the late 1990’s he was profiled in one of the Living Treasures videos produced by Northwest Designer Craftsmen.  They showed the video at the gallery on Saturday, to an appreciative audience of at least 150 people who had turned out to greet and honor Evert.

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Evert Sodergren with Rick and some of the "old guard"

Evert Sodergren with Rick and some of the “old guard”

And here is a scan of a postcard from the early days of the gallery in 1983.  Can you tell which of these people are me and Rick (we are not standing next to each other), and Evert?

NW Woodworkers 1983 color

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A Bulky Spinner

No, not me!  I may have had a little too much Thanksgiving dinner, but it’s not THAT bad….

Back in February 2010 I attended spinning camp on Orcas Island with Judith Mackenzie, and the theme was “Ethnic Spinning and Knitting: Cowichan, Aran and Icelandic.”   We spun Icelandic fleeces for Icelandic lace or the more bulky Lopi-style knitting yarn.  We spun Clun Forest wool to make a 5-ply yarn for traditional Aran sweater knitting.  And we spun on an Indian-head spinner to make the loose, thick yarn used for Cowichan sweaters.

Here is a picture of Judith spinning on her Indian-head spinner at that workshop:

Indian head 2

Later that year we took a trip to Sacramento, CA to attend my niece’s wedding celebration.  On the way down we camped in our pop-up trailer.  From Mt. Lassen NP we went through Chico, CA and in an antique mall there I spotted an Indian-head spinner!  There had been a fire at the antique mall about a year earlier, and it was sitting forlornly in a back room all covered with ash – they hadn’t even bothered to clean it off.  I was tempted but didn’t buy it that day.  But it kept calling to me, so on the way back north we stopped into Chico again and the bulky spinner came home with us.

Here is how it looked when we got it home and before it was vacuumed:

Indian head spinner dirty

Since then it has just sat in my studio.  Last week Rick took it down to the shop and really cleaned it up – put on new finish and everything.  It is beautiful!  Looks like black walnut.

Indian Head spinner restored 1

Indian Head spinner restored 4

Underneath the treadle he found the maker’s mark.

Indian Head Sid Sharples label

 

It turns out these wheels were made by Sid Sharples and another man in California in the 1970’s.  They are retired now.  They were made from black walnut or dark maple.  It was called the California Bulky Spinning Wheel and also known as a “Cowichan Spinner”.  I have found a few pictured on blogs or Flickr on the web – and one was listed on eBay last January, but the guy didn’t get any bids on it.  As an added surprise, I was talking to my friend Sara down in Twisp last week, and it turns out she used to have one of these – it was the very first spinning wheel she owned!

So now it is going to live with Judith Mackenzie.  Why?  Because my teacher and mentor in all things spinning, weaving and generally fiber-related suffered the loss of her ENTIRE STUDIO due to a catastrophic fire in Forks, WA in late October.  I mean everything (it was a teaching as well as a personal studio).  Looms, spinning wheels, all kinds of related equipment, not to mention all her fiber (fleeces, yarn, etc).  Due to the age and nature of construction of the building she was unable to get an insurance rider.

Three of her friends immediately put together a website and are spearheading an effort to raise money and donated equipment to help her rebuild her studio and continue with her career as a fiber artist and nationally known teacher:

Rebuild Judith’s Studio

Check it out – and donate a little if you feel so inclined, to help this wonderful woman recover from a real blow.

 

 

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Since my last post, we have continued working on outside infrastructure projects.  About 2 weeks ago, our plumber came and completed the hookup of water lines and sewer to the shop building.  On the same day, we had 8 dump truck loads of topsoil delivered and dumped around the perimeter of the house.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The plan is to spread this out on top of our very rocky soil before planting a “Dry Site Lawn Mix” in the late fall, just before it snows.  This should then sprout in the spring.  It won’t exactly be a lawn, but will provide a grassy ground-cover around the house that we can mow, but should require little watering once established.  We also had some crushed rock and gravel brought in to make some improvements to the driveway and create a new parking area near the house, across from the carport.  Rick plans to build some steps that will come up from that area to the corner of the deck.

New parking area, and topsoil spread ready for planting

Somewhere in there, I finished up the 3 collapse weave scarves in brown/reddish tones.  Traded one of these with my friend at Backcountry Coffee Roasters for a “coffee credit”!

We have had more visitors.  Juno loves visitors!  My cousin Ernie and his wife Mary, who live down near Mt. Hood in Oregon, came through on a loop up to Anacortes/Camano and then over the North Cascades to see us:

Mary, Ernie & yours truly

The following weekend, our friends who own the Real Mother Goose Gallery in Portland, OR came for 2 nights.  Somehow I failed to take pictures, but they had not been over this way in a long time and had not yet seen our home here on Wolf Creek.  It was also their 40th anniversary so we took them out to the Arrowleaf Bistro in Winthrop for a nice dinner.

More “visitors” – all the bucks are hanging out together these days.  Some of them are in our yard almost every day.

Last week we went down to the Twisp River Pub for the Wednesday evening “Jazz in the Beer Garden”.  My brother had told us the visiting guitarist, John Stowell (from Portland, OR) was really good.  No kidding!  He was playing with Terry Hunt, who isn’t too shabby either, plus a bass and drums.

Last Friday we went to a moving sale down in Carlton and came home with a little Ryobi electric log splitter.  We tried it out this morning on some rounds that refused to yield to the splitting maul last year.  It is fabulous!  and not scary or dangerous.  It just slowly presses the log against a wedge at the right end.  Irresistible force meets (as it turns out) moveable object!

We still have to get one or two more cords of wood for the winter, which come cut to length but not split.  This is going to make life so much easier!

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