Tuesday, November 4, 2008

CD Weaver

After publishing Magic in the Water; wet finishing handwovens, people started asking when I would be producing a video.

I was highly reluctant to do this for several reasons. First, I had done just enough video camera work to know exactly how difficult it is to get good video.

Secondly, I knew that in order to get good video, it cost a whole lot of money - money I simply didn't have after researching, writing and self-publishing Magic, filled as it was with before and after wet finishing samples of fabric (originally 20 projects, now 22 - for a total of 44 actual fabric samples).

Third, unlike a book where you can open it to any page to review whatever part of it you like, you have to fast forward and back and forth in a video to see the bit you want.

As time went by, digital technology developed to the point where I realized that I could combine the best of both books and videos by doing a book on cd with copious full colour photos and video clips - or an ebook as I see they are now called. :)

I began with dressing the loom showing how I wind a warp, rough sley a reed and beam from back to front. The second section included hints and tips - how to hold and throw a shuttle, hemstitching, dealing with more than one shuttle, winding bobbins and pirns and so on.

This past winter it became clear to me that I was having health issues without being able to define what those issues were. All I knew was that it was imperative that I do the third section on wet finishing and at the same time, I had my web master archive the majority of the writing that I've done over my career onto the cd along with the original sections and the new one on wet finishing. Frankly, I didn't think I'd be around very much longer, and that my website - well, if I wasn't here, my website wouldn't be either..........

So CD Weaver III contains the information I consider essential for a new weaver. I am very fast after years of earning my income, always looking for the most efficient, most ergonomic way to do the various tasks. When I find a new way to do something that will require less effort, I take the time to learn. Most recently I changed the way I hold my hook to sley. It took about 6 warps to cotton on to the new method, but I use it all the time now. The change was small, but I do the same job with tiny hand movements instead of using my whole arm.

This change allows me to work with less effort over all and was well worth taking the time to learn.

I am puzzled when I show weavers how I do things and get the response that it's too much trouble to learn something new. But I also have to remember that people are weaving these days, not to earn an income, but for rest and relaxation. And the learning curve can be steep and slippery and not very comfortable, especially if you are trying to unlearn something and do it a new way.

So for those people who are interested in becoming more efficient, CD Weaver is available. My methods won't work for everyone - there are differences in physical size and ability that make no one method the perfect one for everyone.

Until American Thanksgiving, anyone who orders Magic in the Water; wet finishing handwovens will receive CDWeaver III for free. I've had my webmaster post a new video on the CDWeaver page on my website. This one shows how to significantly full a mohair loop scarf, which I later show being brushed to raise a nap in the It Isn't Finished (until it's wet finished) section. The clips are available for free download, and for both PC and Mac users.

The photo above was done for It Isn't Finished (until it's wet finished) and shows the mohair scarf that I fulled in the video clip. It also shows two teasels. The one on the right is a proper Fuller's Teasel. The other is the one that is most commonly found growing in ditches and that people think is a Fuller's Teasel.

To go with the new CD Weaver, I also produced sample sets of the fabric I wet finished, including the above scarf. These are available for sale while they last. They also serve to upgrade Magic in the Water with 5 additional samples. Info on my website. Click on Store, then CD Weaver or Magic in the Water. Email me to order.


Dorothy said...

Not being an American, I'm wondering what date Thanksgiving falls on?

Laura said...

American Thanksgiving is Nov. 26. Canadian Thanksgiving was Oct. 13.

Hope you had a good Guy Fawkes day (now known as Bonfire Day, I hear!)



Anonymous said...

"Frankly, I didn't think I'd be around very much longer, and that my website - well, if I wasn't here, my website wouldn't be either.........."
Laura, please forgive me for being a Blog hopper ~ I jump from subject to subject, not by dates... PLEASE tell me you found that your health issues were nothing permanent!