Choices, choices...

... I have quite a few thoughts in mind for the next great blog post.

I have to video the Spinning chapter of The Art of Rolags.

I'd like to do a post about the crafting of my basket... Which, by the way, is moving along... I've started the sides now.

I could do an impromptue interveiw post, but that would require that people want to know something about me, and I question that one...

Of course I could do some sewing video tutorials, but I am not sure what readers want to know.

So... What would you readers like to see next on the blog?

A spinning post?
A Dyeing post?
Embroidery (machine)?
A personal type of post?

Do you prefer video or still pictures?
Do you want to know more about me, or would you rather read more about the craftiness?

Of course, when my new LadyBug wheel gets to me, I'll have to write a post about that... And boy, I can't wait! Did I menton It is on its way? To the dealer, anyway. Then it will be coming to me, complete with high speed and slow speed whorls, and extra high speed bobbins. Fun toys!



Too many Crafties!

So really, I should be finishing things up here, right? I should definitely NOT be starting new projects.

But What do I do... I go ahead and start new projects.

Today, I cast on for the Blue Jeans Lace Leaf Shawl. I have not finished my basket, and I have lots of yarn to spin. I need to dye more fiber in the next few weeks, I'd like to have a whole bunch of nice variety done up to stock in my next stocking on the Indie Dyers Coop.

And, I just got my Batts that I bought from Berritt of The Good Sheep, who is another member of the Coop. (I really have to say, they look just Yum! She called them Pink Chocolate and they look good enough to eat!)

Oh, and did I mention, that my new LADYBUG spinning wheel is en route? well, it is en route to my dealer, and from there it will come to me, but really... yay!!!

Plus then there is a little matter of a spinning swap I am participating in. My partner (the sender) will send fiber to me (the spinner) to spin up. half the fiber goes back to her as yarn, the rest is for me to keep. My impression is that most people will be doing 4-8 ounce batches. My partner and I agreed to do 12-16 ounces for each of us (because really, what spinner can turn down more Fiber??) its more craftiness for me to do, but fun fun...

Oh, and My monkey socks... they have progress, but they are still not done. that will take time. And sadly for them, they are not the highest priority right now. Then again, neither is my lace shawl, and I was silly enough to cast that on...

Oh well... the nice part about the shawl (aside from how pretty it is) is that the cast on is 3 stitches. I only have about 7 rows in, with 11 or so stitches at this point. yeah, I know, not much of a cast on. but, I only got a few minutes to spend on it. And, it took almost an hour just to wind the yarn into a ball!

Ok, I have my crafty projects lined up... now lets see how I do.



My Very First Video Tutorial... Keychain Diapers

Ok, in all fair warning, I need to say, the video quality is terrible. my captions didn't come out and I had to go over them in youtube. and this is my first ever video tutorial, so kind of an expirement.

Be Kind.



I was frustrated...

...and I did something about it. While shopping at Walmart, I found a little cheapy version of a flip -type camera. For all of 20 dollars, this little doo-dad records video using 2 AA batteries and an SD memory card.

The video quality is low, but I'm hoping it will suffice for my needs.

And if it does, then watch out video bloggers, I'm about to join your ranks!


Frustrated today.

I have been messing with Video stuff today, and it is causing me some real frustrations.

I want to put some video of my kids on DVD for family. But that isn't happening. And I want to take and put some video up of my spinning for the blog. But That isn't happening right now either.

Know why these things aren't happening?

Because despite having the Camcorder (an old analog one with no USB and no digital ports, sadly) and having the Pinnacle box and software which is supposed to be the converter and allow me to upload to the computer, it isn't working.

I think there are a couple of factors.

Factor 1, we recently got a new computer. it has Vista 64 bit operating system. It is not compatible with loads of things. Very frustrating right there. I think it also means I need a new web cam, and the one I have is not even old.

Factor 2, the stupid pinnacle box does not have full AV inputs... it has an S-Video, and a video jack for the yellow part of the AV cord, but a stereo jack for the audio... which my camera does not have.

Factor 3, I am just about ready to throw the whole get-up in the trash or out the window.

So... in order to put any video on my computer, even the low quality that comes from a webcam, I need to buy MORE stuff!

And you know none of it is cheap. It means spending more money we don't have on things we already do have but which are no longer compatible with our frustrating, but very fast and also very expensive brand new computer.

Its just not fair. I want life to be fair. Actually, what I really want is whatever it takes to get all this stuff working.

So, if anyone out there has any technical knowledge of how to get this all working without spending a fortune, please let me know.

Part of me wants to just run out and buy one of these:

But... My DH would just kill me, and that is even if I had the car to run out and shop, which I do not. Plus, it is still a fairly low quality video, so great for web applications (which is really what I want it for, since I'd love to give all you readers some cool videos to watch), but not so great for awesome family videos. On the other hand, it is compact enough to keep in a pocket for spur of the moment use, though they only have 30-60 minutes of recording, depending on the model.

I did try to convince DH once that it would be a cool toy, but he would not bite. He only likes to spend money on games he can play with, not cool gadgets for me. Plus, in his defense, I do have a lot of expensive things, too, even though most of them he did not actually spend the money on, but I saved for and got myself.

Unfortunately, all of my current money is caught up in the new wheel that is ordered (and should arrive in a couple weeks)

Too bad Walmart does not take yarn in payment... I could probably whip up some skeins of pretty hand spun to pay for new toys, lol.



As Promised... Craft Room Pics!

First, This is just Part of the mess we pulled out of the room. Scary, isn't it? I also gave away a full trash bag of fleece and fabrics.

Here is the sewing Corner. Notice the 2 windows? Tons of sunlight for that corner. I am making a basket for the shelf to hold small stabilizers and embroidery/sewing items. In the basket already there is some Merino/Silk I am spinnign right now.
Sewing Area

The Computer Area, which isn't as messy as it looks... And yes, that is my facebook up on the computer. And yes I will friend you if you like. :)
Computer Area

On the bottom shelves of my book case are 6 show-offs, 1 with FOE, 2 with FOs, 1 with Fibers, 1 with bobbins and carders, OK, maybe 2 with fiber. I also have about 10 pounds of undyed fibers in my pantry.
Bottom Shelves

The top shelf has yet to be touched, but holds patterns and books. I need to clear it out of junk though.
Top Shelves

My personal Yarn stash. Which isn't to suggest that it never gets used for business... it does, but if I am gonna knit or crochet, it is from this stash. :)
Yarn Stash

And here is the start of the basket I am making for the shelf. boring base, but after it gets about 2 inches bigger on each side, I am gonna start the sides in some brown/white natural hand spun I did early in my spinning adventure. that should lend some visual interest to the peice.
Basket Base

Hope you like my new space. There are still a few kinks, and a few things to finish, but I like it.



Craft Room Re-do!

Readers who frequent the same message boards as I may already know that I have been working hard on my Craft room. the room is large, but also must function as office/computer room, and as Dining room, and has no real storage, no closets, and no built in shelves.

Well, its been a long time coming, but I have finally re-done it.

Of course, that is completely on a re-arrangement/organization level. no new paint, and so far, no new window dressings. But its a start.

Previously, I had done my craft room in This Post. But that was before we were given DH's Bubby and Zadie's Dining room table, a beautiful old table, which has seen several generations of use. My Father in law remembers causing one of the many story-telling dings in the table when he was 2 years old. We decided that despite its dings, it is still a very pretty table, and more than that, it is an heirloom for my husband, and for our kids.

So, we had to find space.

and of course, we had 2 computers up until recently, a desktop and a laptop. Well, then 2 things happened. we replaced the dying laptop with a humungo but amazingly fast and up to date desktop, and days later, the old desktop pretty much died. so now, we have one functioning computer, which takes up a lot more space than my old laptop did.

Then there are the sewing machines. well, one serger, one embroidery/sewing machine, and one high tech sewing machine. I love them all. but, in the space I had, the poor embroidery machine was sadly ignored. and piled upon, so I could barely get to it. completely sacrilegious.

I had to make some decisions. we got rid of the old desktop, and are sharing one computer now, which we moved onto the computer desk, where my 3 machines had previously been housed.

I decided to relegate the sewing only machine to backup, and it will move upstairs to be stored, and now I will have only 2 machines in front of me, and will still have 3 functions. The machines are moved to the sewing table, where the new computer had been housed. (I know, we were backwards, but the sewing table did not have room for 3 machines. it does have space for 2.)

I gave away to a friend a PILE of fabrics, mostly fleeces that I was not using, and probably never would. when they were bought, I was using them, of course, but my sewing skills, and my diaper construction has changed so much that it was just a waste of space to keep them.

Now, all my fabric is confined to one large dresser (6 feet long) which when we need it, functions as a buffet, as well. Also on that dresser is the tower of shelving I previously had over my sewing space. It now holds my personal yarn stash, not the hugest stash, but it fits well. on top, my vase of spindles and mini-skeins has a home.

No more fabric on the big book shelf we brought into the room last summer. instead, I currently have 6 big show-off bins (which fit perfectly 3 to a shelf) and 1 small one. I need 3 more large ones and 2 more small ones to make best use of the space.

My favorite new feature is my vertical storage. more specifically, I finally convinced DH to mount a shelf on the wall above my new sewing space. on that shelf will be my collection of stabilizers, and embroidery and sewing accessories I don;t want the kids reaching. they'll be stores nocely hidden (mostly) in the basket I am making just for the shelf. I think my spinning basket will also find space up there.

My thread racks have moved to their new home, over the new sewing space, a little higher than I first thought, but possibly better this way, since the machines can be pushed all the way to the wall without bumping thread.

Sorry for the incredibly long picture free post. I promise, the next one will be picture heavy and show off all this craft-room goodness. I just have to finish cleaning up remnants and take some pictures.

This also means you can expect to see installment 2 in the Art of the Rolag very soon. Spinning the Rolag. I just could not see video recording in the mess I lived in before.


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