Wednesday, March 28, 2012

March - Going out like a Lion!

     Well, we have been so blessed with weather this year that, when March came in like a Lamb, I thought of the old rhyme and said to myself, "That will never happen this year...we actually had three wonderful days last week - 20 + degrees! - so I believed it to be all over but the shouting.
       However, Monday brought threats of snow (5-10 cm. Peanuts!) and a wind warning. That was the real Lion. Tuesday it raged all day, and today there are drifts like we haven't seen all winter. 
Would you believe that I set up a cold frame last week by the little deck, with seedlings (cucumbers and zucchini) as well as several geraniums which had been overwintering in the office and taking up lots of space?  It's under this drift. I don't dare open it to see what has survived (if anything) because it might freeze the plants. Snow insulates, right? I had taken out my little patio table to do potting on, and it's up to its knees in snow too. And its grout is still not sealed. It's standing on the little deck.
      Luckily while all this weather is keeping me indoors, I have had an indoor project to work on. We have the new washer hooked up in the new bathroom (and the toilet. They are the only things in there that are in working order at the moment).    
       So, what needs to be done is: build a half-wall to create space for a linen closet at the end of the tub as well as a "cradle" to hold the tub.
Ladder in soon-to-be linen closet - 32 x 26 x 96!
     Then, we have to get the dryer hooked up (means getting the electrician to move the 220-volt receptacle to the new bathroom (from the basement) and then we can stack them up with the stacking kit. Then we have to build another half-wall to separate the washer-dryer from the area where the vanity will go, then build or buy a vanity. Then have the plumber back to hook up the tub and sink, and then we tile around the tub, paint, and decorate, and then we're done. Why is everything so complicated?
     So far I've built the wall for the linen closet and put up the gyproc on both sides. I'm at the stage where I seam-fill a corner and have to wait for it to dry before I can seam-fill an adjacent corner. And I have to buy three of the edge guards because I could only find one in the basement - I never even thought to check because we've had this big stash of them since we built on to the house in 91-92. But now we're out!

The washer is hooked up. The dryer will go on top later.
     I am really impressed with the washer - having it on the main floor is great, first off - you feel you can wash anytime! Then, the clothes come out quite dry already, so it doesn't take long in the (old) dryer to dry them. I did hang out a batch while the weather was good last week, but it didn't dry terribly quickly - we need to move the clothesline to where the wind has more impact. And I suppose I could have put them out in the morning and they would have had a better chance. It was when a lot of snow was melting too, so there was a lot of moisture in the air. Oh well, they *were* dry the next day!

Friday, March 2, 2012


Manipulating the vessel

I am trying something new - to me - wet-felting using a resist. I started with slippers, which were a complete failure, mainly because I didn't have the right sort of resist - sheet plastic *doesn't* work. I think the fleece was also too wet and not soapy enough. I tried again yesterday, after cutting my losses with the slippers (and a lot of roving down the drain, so to speak).
Unsuccessful slipper
It *looked* all right, but it just wasn't sticking together properly, and it was really wet, even when I left it overnight. It was soggy and falling to bits when I unwrapped it the next morning.

However, I did learn a lot; and when I checked the internet again I found a couple of great tutorials and followed one to make a 'vessel' using a resist. Now, a felt pot isn't a terribly useful thing (though I suppose I could make some felt flowers to put in it!) but it was at least a success. I need a lot of things to make the next one better (including a baby rattle if I can find one of the right shape). And then I may be ready to try slippers again.

Roving, dyed by me!
Making the pot used a surprising amount of roving, so I am going to look for some big turkey-cooking size pans, and see if I can't make more of each colour than I have been. And then I suppose it's back to the Mill to get some more fleece! This is the left-over roving in the colours I used for the pot. I have quite a lot of greens, so I suppose the next pot, or the slippers, will be greens. I think I need to add some more blues to my palette. And have a whole lot more fun.

Next up: Nuno felting. Now *that* looks like a lot of fun.