Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Hairy Scary Yarn

A couple of years ago, I inherited a bag of fiber from a former teacher. In it were a couple of hanks of jute. At the time, I didn't spin, but I thought that it looked pretty cool and I liked the colour and so I tucked it away for "later".

Later actually came. I have been working on a couple of felted vessels (here and here) and I decided to do some knotless netting on them as well as some beading. On the smaller, rounder blue one I used waxed linen and some glass beads. The shape reminded me of Anasazi pottery and so I stitched a few zig zag designs.

The larger one reminds me more of an amphora. Both of the vessels were felted over a flat pattern, and then once they were semi-felted, I threw them into my front loading washing machine. The small blue one, I checked frequently. It came out lovely and puffy. The larger one was forgotten in the chaos of the day and came out with a bit of a ridge where it had flattened out. I turned it inside out and put it through again and another ridge appeared. Sigh. Maybe not the best idea I ever had. I wanted to do some netting on it too but the waxed linen seemed too fine. While looking for something else in the shed, I discovered the bag of fiber that had been gifted to me. I decided to spin some of the jute to use with the larger vessel.

I have not spun anything like this before. The fibers are long and strong and every now and then I come across a clump of.... something. Not the easiest thing that I have ever spun, nor the tidiest. The stuff sheds like crazy and there are bits of fiber everywhere. It is something to be spun outside in the summer time. Unfortunately, it is spring and flood season and tomorrow I will update you with what effect today's rain has had.

In any case, Nicole came by and looked at the yarn that I was spinning and said "that scares me!" And she said it more than once. So here is the first bobbin of my hairy scary yarn that will be used for knotless netting on my large amphora like vessel.

And in roving form......

Here it is up close. I suppose that I should be spinning it wet, but I actually like the hairy part.

Tomorrow, I am back at work. It may prove to be an interesting day. The waters have risen quite a bit and with the rain that we had today the flood forecast is expected to reach the same level of the 2005 flood. Over 500 homes affected that year. And depending on the rainfall in the next couple of days, we may reach the same levels as the "Flood of '73" Here are a few images from the past few record floods. Most notably 1936 and 1973.


mira's papa said...

If you follow the flood photos link Jackie put up, the second page photo with the number P296-22-1 is a photo of the farm where Jackie grew up. From the air it looks the same today. It's the great flood of '73. She was 5 then, but remembers it. I was a bit older and remember it very well, though I lived further up the river and on higher ground. But I drove through that flood in Fredericton in a big bus. It was pretty severe. We had to get out of the bus and take our things from the luggage compartment below and bring them into the bus to drive through that water. I was on a trip with the school band at the time.

If it gets that bad this year, the cows will once again have to be ferried off of the farm. The milking parlour could get flooded, and that means evacuation. Dairy cows have to be milked twice a day or really bad things happen. You don't want to know.

Kansas A said...

Wow Jackie that last picture sorta reminds me of that grass we put in the kid's easter baskets :) Well at least I didn't find it scary lol.

Sorry to hear of the flood waters rising, I hope everything is okay for you and your family!

TadMack said...

Oh, my WORD, that vessel thingy is GORGEOUS. And I have to say that the frizzy jute is pretty, too, but I can imagine you're practically breathing it by now. *sneeze!*

Oy. The flood pictures are intense. Hope it somehow recedes and misses the farm...

Christine said...

I love the felted vessel! That jute is kind of funky and I would love to see how it looks wet spun.

Stay safe in those rising waters!

DaviMack said...

That vessel is beautiful! What will you do with it? I mean, is it meant to be a lampshade (which is what it looks like from the picture), or a display piece?

I've used Jute - but only in the garden, as it comes in nice rolls of twine which are great for supporting tomatoes. It looks ... kinda like a really coarse hair, and I can't imagine that it feels anything but rough!

Here is a direct link to the archived picture of Jackie's parents' farm in '73 (because I'm dense enough to have been confused & not noticed that there was a second & third page of pictures, and spent a few minutes re-reading the comment trying to get it right).

Cynthia said...

I LOVE the vessel; you are so creative Jackie! I cannot believe you spun that fibre - holy batman girl, it would be an adventure; nice job on it!