If you have visited our lodge sometime in the last year, you may have noticed a large piece of equipment when you first walk in the door:
Thanks to a chance opportunity, I acquired a new-to-me loom, about a year and a half ago. Greg and I went to pick it up with his big pick-up truck, and dis-assembled, it literally filled the back. We brought it home, stacked all of the pieces in the store, and there it stayed until Paul put it back together for me. It was during a time that I had to be gone for several days at a stretch. It was wonderful to come home and see it all set up. Since then, it's been a real journey to put it into actual use.
It was many years ago that I began weaving. While in college, I needed a fine arts credit. I like to put it this way: I don't sing or dance or paint or draw, so it was a little intimidating to find a course. When I saw one for beginning weaving, I decided that was a safe choice. I always enjoyed working with my hands, and I was already a knitter, amongst other things. That was the start of several classes and independent studies that I ended up taking to learn this.
In my early years at the lodge, I had a different loom set up. First it was in the little cabin Agate, then the lodge, and eventually I moved it to the little log cabin we refer to as either the studio or old number four. That served me well as a place to work, but eventually, for a number of reasons, I stored everything away. It just wasn't the time in my life to be trying to pursue weaving, between work, family, and homeschool.
Now I am working on starting again. When I am asked what I weave, my standard current answer is rectangles. I started with a project that used some yarn from my stash, and wove up a scarf. It was a little frustrating, but a good starter project for re-learning what to do when the tension goes bad or a warp string breaks. From there, I turned to my old friend, cotton yarn, and made two more scarves.
Next up was a longer warp, destined to be dishtowels. It may seem like a crazy thing to take the time to weave an object that is destined to be used for the task of drying dishes. But it ultimately is quite satisfying, both in the process of making it, and then in the using of them once they are finished. This loom has the capability to do much more patterning than my old loom. My future projects include learning more about how to accomplish this, again starting out with basic dishtowels as my vehicle.
It's wonderful to be back in the realm of this hobby that I love. I am fortunate to have a beautiful corner to work, with awesome views out to the woods and the lake. What better inspiration could I have than the Northwoods?