Monday, December 31, 2018

Happy New Year! May it be a better one than 2018


Yes indeed... hoping for better times in 2019.

I started off by listing all of the bad things that have happened during this year in our family.  And then going on to also list other sad and tragic events world-wide.  But I stopped and deleted the list.  Rather than dwelling on those events I have to say they're now history.  And history always holds both downs and ups.  And I'll have to admit there were a few times during 2018 when things were hopeful--and even joyful.

I haven't made resolutions for an upcoming year in a long time.  I do have goals that I set throughout the year.  And I feel good about each one of those that I'm able to accomplish by a (usually) self-imposed deadline.

One of the goals was met this morning when I completed weaving the last day of my 2018 tapestry diary and cut it off the loom.  Here we are--the 2018 version of my tapestry diary series and me, holding it aloft--like a prize fish, according to my husband:


The 2018 tapestry diary is 61" long x 11.5" wide.  The warp is linen, sett at 8 epi.  The weft is wool with the colors all of natural dyes I've done during the last year and a half.  Most of the colors are from black walnut, henna, Osage orange, madder, indigo (with some top dyeing with indigo over the yellows of the Osage orange to give various greens).

After taking a look at the 2018 tapestry diary I put it aside and prepared for 2019.  I want to weave the first day tomorrow and so I had to get a warp on the loom.  I wound the warp yesterday and today spent a couple of hours tying the new onto the remains of the old warp.  I like to tie on because it saves time.  I also like the thought of linking the new year with the remains of the old one... just like our lives.

Here's a look at the preparations for 2019 on the loom:


I have the new warp in my hand, holding the cross (a separation of every other warp end that keeps the threads in order).


One by one, I tie each in order to the old.  I use an overhand knot for the ties and make sure to snug each one tightly so they won't pull apart as I'm winding the warp onto the beam.


After tying all of the ends, I have to work the knots through the reed.  I do this by pulling a small group at a time.


After the reed, all the knotted ends have to be "helped" through the heddles.  This is a bit slower than going through the reed with the knots because the eyes of the heddles are smaller than the reed spaces.  Looks like a mess here but it's really fine.



Next, I begin to wind the warp onto the beam.  I'm winding paper between layers of the warp.  I measured out 3 yards for the new warp--more than I'll weave during next year but I probably won't have to tie on new until 2021!


It's now tied onto the lower rod.  The initial spreading of the warp ends is done and tomorrow morning I'll put in a half-hitch to hold it all in place as I begin one more year's tapestry diary, to be done one day at a time to make 2019 part of my woven history.

I wish all of you a very successful, safe and happy 2019!  A better year than 2018... please!


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