Inexplicably Happy

Ever have one of those days where you just wake up and find yourself happy for no reason whatsoever?  I’m having one of today.  Nothing about my circumstances has changed: I still have deadlines hanging over my head, the laundry hasn’t magically cleaned itself overnight, my inbox is still scary-full, my workouts haven’t turned me into an amazon, and I have no idea what I’m making for dinner.

And yet…I’m spending the day walking around smiling at folks, chatting up people in the grocery store, and generally spreading sunshine wherever I go.  Why could that be?

Hmm.  The only thing that’s changed lately is that I’ve started spinning and weaving again.

For a while after the WeaveZine 2.0 launch I was so busy that my own artistic pursuits got pushed to the back burner and eventually fell off the stove altogether.  It was darned ironic, let me tell ya, to spend all day working on creating weaving media and yet have no time to weave.  I love the work I do on WeaveCast and WeaveZine; it’s very satisfying, but just there’s something magical about getting your hands into fiber and thread.

It started with the Eastside Spinners.  (I blame Marie, who is a total fiber-enabler.)  Hanging out with them got me started spinning again, and relit my obsession with charka spinning.

What happens when you get obsessed with cotton spinning?  You end up with a lot of fine, singles, hand-spun cotton.  It took me a while to get my skills back, but several spindles on I’m back to spinning a fine even thread.

hand-spun cotton

The pirns above are destined to be weft on an upcoming project.  I’m not sure what yet.  I’ve admired khadhi cloth in the past, so perhaps that.  Or maybe I’ll try to do something interesting with the inherent twist of the cotton singles ala Eileen Hallman.

So after things settled down with the website, and after I decided that for my own mental health and fun of my family, I would start taking weekends off from any kind of WeaveZine work: suddenly I had time to weave again!

I struggled for a while with my weaving.  At first I was going to reprise the overshot bookmarks that were published in Handwoven, but nine yards of 2-inch wide overshot was just daunting.  So I wound on an additional six inches of 140/2 silk warp to make a scarf width.  I planned to weave words in summer-and-winter…only the phrase I’d picked out was long and the weave drafting quickly became boring and redundant.  And you know what?  After many boring hours of laboriously filling in little boxes in Fiberworks PCW, I just didn’t think my phrase was that clever any more.

So I repurposed that warp a third time, working on a project that currently has my little geeky heart aflame.  I’m so excited about this one, that I blew through the drafting (taquete this time, instead of summer-and-winter.)

I’m almost done threading, even after having to start over half-way through because I forgot to go over the back beam.  (How is it possible that an AVL production dobby loom doesn’t have a “get out of forgetting to go over the back beam free” feature like my Baby Wolf does?  Hopefully this got fixed in models after my 1984-era loom was built.)

threading 1


This project I’m working on is for the Complex Weaver’s fine-threads study group (one of the deadlines, BTW.  Don’t none of ya’ll tell them I’m still threading, kay?) so I’m keeping the draft mum so as not to spoil the surprise.  But here’s a shot of the work-in-progress.

threading 2

The take-away?  Spinning and weaving can’t fix the circumstances of your life, but they sure can fix the happy!


P.S. Please forgive the grainy cell-phone pictures.  My main point-and-shoot is having issues with its battery and doesn’t want to recharge.

Please share your thoughts: I enjoy your comments and feedback!