Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Fiber Cabinet or two

This cabinet has been used in many ways. At this time it houses bath mats. The shelves at the top are actually T.V. trays that lock in place, and it is a great way of storing some yarn , bags and have some privacy by putting it by the window.BedroomMakeover2012 (5)
This is the best configuration of the many permutations of how to store things in this cabine. By the way this is my 1,000 th post since I started blogging and what better way of celebration than with organizing my fiber. My Flip Loom fits, my wheel and all my loose fibe, plus some of my yarn on top . On top the yarn is inside those wicker baskets. The shelf on top and the other shelf are add ons from us.  I am able to store the binders with my circular needles and the green binder has lots of patterns. I am also able to sore the swift behind the binders. It looks fantastic and it is organizing my fiber in a very neat way.
Inside the drawers I am able to put away my other loom "Cricket" , needles, I can actually fit the Camera bag inside, and there is room for other backpacks. My partner Michael was very instrumental in getting this thing assembled and in shape.  Nothing says love  like puting furniture together and not filing for divorce lol. It gets testy, you get testy and in the end is just a piece of furniture.
Behind the Earthues dyeing kits in the wicker cube in the middle, I have my wool combs.  This is what I was dreaming about, a cabinet where I can put all my equipment away.
Once you close the doors, the place looks brighter and tidy.

BedroomMakeover2012 (4)
We got two matching nightstands at IKEA the model is "Birkeland". I want to thank all my followers and visitors. This is Crafty Andy's 1000th blog post, thanks for stopping by!
BedroomMakeover2012 (6)

Monday, June 25, 2012

Sun Satchel Felted Bag

SunSatchelWestKnits (4)
I like this bag a lot, it is the Sun Satchel by Stephen West. I came out a big bigger than the ontended bag, so I had to adjust some of the bag to make it more to my size. More than size, more friendly to carry things in it. I can tell you that I love the bag. I actually have two buttons so that it can expand a bit if I need to have a bigger bag. I have not added a third button, but it's a tought. SunSatchelWestKnits (3)
So this bag welcomes you to the Summer of 2012. What I definitely learned is that I will need to go down a needle size if I want  something to be exactly the size Stephen designed it.  I know that my Forge blanket was at least 65 inches without blocking and this bags is the second project that came about.  This bag is about 3 inches wider than it should have been, but I am happy with the end product.
SunSatchelWestKnits (2)
I think Stephen West is such a creative young designer. Meeting him in person, at "A Verb for Keeping Warm" in Oakland, CA, was a wonderful experience that alloweed me to chat with him. I joined his new KAL, which by the way , he was working on while he was there, lol. Thanks for stopping by!
Myster Kal WestKNits July 2012

Thursday, June 21, 2012

USOC , Sandosky And Ravelympics

It should not be news  by now.   Twitter, Facebook and all major websites are buzzing with this.It is actually all around the world So I am going to repost  the letter that the USOC sent to Ravelry.  I have to tell you that the biggest problem is not the trademark, but the uncaring and rude language of this letter.  How is it possible for  people not to proof read ,or if they do, how can you say this is acceptable, that is beyond me.. He actually apologized twice, and not very good apologies may I say.  The Apologies are at the end.

Dear Mr. Forbes,
In March 14, 2011, my colleague, Carol Gross, corresponded with your attorney, Craig Selmach [sic], in regard to a pin listed as the “2010 Ravelympic Badge of Glory.”  At that time, she explained that the use of RAVELYMPIC infringed upon the USOC’s intellectual property rights, and you kindly removed the pin from the website.  I was hoping to close our file on this matter, but upon further review of your website, I found more infringing content.

By way of review, the USOC is a non-profit corporation chartered by Congress to coordinate, promote and govern all international amateur athletic activities in the United States.  The USOC therefore is responsible for training, entering and underwriting U.S. Teams in the Olympic Games.  Unlike the National Olympic Committees of many other countries, the USOC does not rely on federal funding to support all of its efforts.  Therefore, in order to fulfill our responsibilities without the need for federal funding, Congress granted the USOC the exclusive right to use and control the commercial use of the word OLYMPIC a and any simulation or combination thereof in the United States, as well as the OLYMPIC SYMBOL.  See the Olympic and Amateur Sports Act, 36 U.S.C. §220501 et seq. (the “Act”).  (A copy of the relevant portion of the Act is enclosed for your convenience.)  The Act prohibits the unauthorized use of the Olympic Symbol or the mark OLYMPIC and derivations thereof for any commercial purpose or for any competition, such as the one organized through your website.  See 36 U.S.C. §220506(c).  The USOC primarily relies on legitimate sponsorship fees and licensing revenues to support U.S. Olympic athletes and finance this country’s participation in the Olympic Games.  Other companies, like Nike and Ralph Lauren, have paid substantial sums for the right to use Olympic-related marks, and through their sponsorships support the U.S. Olympic Team.  Therefore, it is important that we restrict the use of Olympic marks and protect the rights of companies who financially support Team USA.
In addition to the protections of the Act discussed above, the USOC also owns numerous trademark registration that include the mark OLYMPIC. These marks therefore are protected under the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. §1051 et seq. Thus, Ravelry.com’s unauthorized use of the mark OLYMPIC or derivations thereof, such as RAVELYMPICS, may constitute trademark infringement, unfair competition and dilution of our famous trademarks.

The USOC would like to settle this matter on an amicable basis. However, we must request the following actions be taken.

1.  Changing the name of the event, the “Ravelympics.”;  The athletes of Team USA have usually spent the better part of their entire lives training for the opportunity to compete at the Olympic Games and represent their country in a sport that means everything to them.  For many, the Olympics represent the pinnacle of their sporting career.  Over more than a century, the Olympic Games have brought athletes around the world together to compete in an event that has come to mean much more than just a competition between the world’s best athletes.  The Olympic Games represent ideals that go beyond sport to encompass culture and education, tolerance and respect, world peace and harmony.

The USOC is responsible for preserving the Olympic Movement and its ideals within the United States.  Part of that responsibility is to ensure that Olympic trademarks, imagery and terminology are protected and given the appropriate respect.  We believe using the name “Ravelympics” for a competition that involves an afghan marathon, scarf hockey and sweater triathlon, among others, tends to denigrate the true nature of the Olympic Games.  In a sense, it is disrespectful to our country’s finest athletes and fails to recognize or appreciate their hard work.

It looks as if this is the third time that the Ravelympics have been organized, each coinciding with an Olympic year (2008, 2010, and 2012).  The name Ravelympics is clearly derived from the terms “Ravelry” (the name of your website) and OLYMPICS, making RAVELYMPICS a simulation of the mark OLYMPIC tending to falsely suggest a connection to the Olympic Movement.  Thus, the use of RAVELYMPICS is prohibited by the Act.  Knowing this, we are sure that you can appreciate the need for you to re-name the event, to something like the Ravelry Games.

1.  Removal of Olympic Symbols in patterns, projects, etc.   As stated before, the USOC receives no funding from the government to support this country’s Olympic athletes.  The USOC relies upon official licensing and sponsorship fees to raise the funds necessary to fulfill its mission. Therefore, the USOC reserves use of Olympic terminology and trademarks to our official sponsors, suppliers and licensees.  The patterns and projects featuring the Olympic Symbol on Ravelry.com’s website are not licensed and therefore unauthorized.  The USOC respectfully asks that all such patterns and projects be removed from your site.

For your convenience, we have listed some of the patterns featuring Olympic trademarks.  However, this list should be viewed as illustrative rather than exhaustive.  The USOC requests that all patterns involving Olympic trademarks be removed from the website.  We further request that  you rename various patterns that may not feature Olympic trademarks in the design but improperly use Olympic in the pattern name.
Thank you for your time and attention to this matter.  We would appreciate a written reply to this letter by no later than June 19, 2012.  If you would like to discuss this matter directly, please feel free to contact me at the number above, or you may reach my colleague, Carol Gross.
Kindest Regards,
Brett Hirsch
Law Clerk
Office of the General Counsel
United States Olympic Committee
1 Olympic Plaza
Colorado Springs, CO 80909

After the outrage from tens of thousands of emails , tweets and facebook comments these were his responses . These are his two apologies, insulting the intelligence of fiber crafters everywhere, they should all be fired.

Statement Update: ( THIS WAS the last one)

"As a follow-up to our previous statement on this subject, we would again like to apologize to the members of the Ravelry community. While we stand by our obligation to protect the marks and terms associated with the Olympic and Paralympic Movements in the United States, we sincerely regret the use of insensitive terms in relation to the actions of a group that was clearly not intending to denigrate or disrespect the Olympic Movement. We hope you’ll accept this apology and continue to support the Olympic Games."

Statement from USOC Chief Communications and Public Affairs Officer Patrick Sandusky:

“Thanks to all of you who have posted, tweeted, emailed and called regarding the letter sent to the organizers of the Ravelympics.
Like you, we are extremely passionate about what we do. And, as  you may know, the United States Olympic Committee is a non-profit entity, and our Olympic team receives no government funding. We are totally dependent on our sponsors, who pay for the right to associate with the Olympic Movement, as well as our generous donors to bring Team USA to the Games.
The letter sent to the organizers of the Ravelympics was a standard-form cease and desist letter that explained why we need to protect our trademarks in legal terms. Rest assured, as an organization that has many passionate knitters, we never intended to make this a personal attack on the knitting community or to suggest that knitters are not supportive of Team USA.
We apologize for any insult and appreciate your support. We embrace hand-crafted American goods as we currently have the Annin Flagmakers of New Jersey stitching a custom-made American flag to accompany our team to the Olympic Games in London. To show our support of the Ravelry community, we would welcome any handmade items that you would like to create to travel with, and motivate, our team at the 2012 Games.”
 So how nice is mister Sandusky.  Now he wanted the knitters and crocheters to gift the athletes our denigrating garments for free.  I bet you he did not know how big Ravelry is and how Big the Crafting Community is.  I had no idea that the USOC was such a bully and that it had such  low standards when it comes to the defense of the trademark.  You know by now that everyone understood the Trademark isssue, what we did not understand were the insults, three times.  One in the letter you sent, that you claim is a standard C&D letter (liar) and then when you apologized you insulted us again by telling us that you will accept our donations.  You are so full of nothing, because in the end that is what you will have.You want our free stuff, I don't think so.

I will help the USA team, but not your organization.  You should be fired, your clerk should be fire, your PR should be fired.  You thought you were dealing with a couple of hundred people, well Mister Sandusky you have over 2,000,000,000 million people and more that believe you are a creep.  You will have to work yourself out of the hole you dug yourself into , but I don't know how. Every time I think of the USA Team and the USOC all that comes to mind is how CONDESCENDING and RUDE you three people are.  If the company that you represented USOC has the same values shown in the letters and apologies that you gave to the people you offended, I want nothing to do with you.  I am sure that as days go by , you will realize not only how far up your arse you put your head, but that at the same time you put your foot down your throat.  A very difficult situation to Unravel , no pun intended yourself from.

Ravelry is a Global community, of millions of men and women from around the world, you are so small.  What will the Legacy be of Patrick Sandusky will be!  I will leave that to the blogosphere and to the Karma of Life.  Good luck you are going to need it. You are a sorry excuse for a non-profit organization and I hope your athletes make it big, but I hope you get dismantled. Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Kromski Sonata not for the masses

Sonata (1) by Crafty Andy
Sonata (1), a photo by Crafty Andy on Flickr.
I have no idea what do people think 5 years of Craftmanship Warranty means, but I can tell you that my next wheel is not going to be a Kromski. What you are seeing is the replacment post from my Sonata. IT IS NOT NEW, it was taken off another wheel, it has some dents. I will deal with it if it works. Good think I bought this will with a VISA card that extends the warranty. I will write Tim of New VOyager a letter in the next few days, to thank him, but also to give him my grievances. When you have a car and a door has a craftmanship defect or problem, the manufacturer does not send you a used door. The manufacturer or representative of Kromski should have sent me a NEW post. There is a reason why I did not buy a Kromski Harp Loom.

I do like my wheel a lot and will continue to use it for as long as it works. I am very dissapointed , yet I am glad I got something better than glue it with gorilla glue. If you are going to buy a New Wheel, Steer away from Kromski. Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Natural Dyes Class

I have wanted, for a long time, to take a Natural Dye Class at "A Verb For Keeping Warm" . These ladies not only are fantastic sponsors of some of the MFKR if not All, they are fantastic teachers for Natural Dyes. Kristine is a wonderful teacher and I can spend hours listening to her teach, the same with Aday. This couple are a great combo of information and techniques about natural dyes and the plants to use. I was very glad that I joined this group on Father's Day. I was delighted to find my Friend Kate was taking the class with me. We had a chance to catch up and walk to the Train together. This class is worth the money, because they give you so much information in so little time. We did everything with a very simple , yet full instructional approach. I am looking forward to the mushroom dye class in the future.
AVFKWNaturalDyeClassJune2012 (8)
The picture Above is the mason jars that we  made our dye batches.  We used natural things, animals and flowers.  We understand the sacrifice and the environment and it is a great way to approach dyes.  You have limitations on color and it is  and it is not an exact science.  I think people have been  using dyes from nature for thousands of years. In these jars from left to right, you have madder root, rebeckia, cochineal, yarrow and marigolds. The yarn needs to be mordanted before the dye really takes a hold of it.  At this time we used protein fibers to dye, no cellulose was dyed.
AVFKWNaturalDyeClassJune2012 (9)
Now on the picture above we put the jars with yarn in a double boiler.  We cover the mason jars, then we cover the pot.  You actually have it simmering for a bit of time,   at least one hour. Below you have the Indigo Batch pots.  We actually dyed some wool felt and some yarn as well.  Indigo is a different kind of creature and we really got the fundamentals, plus the safety measures to take. It was a fun class.
AVFKWNaturalDyeClassJune2012 (10)
Below you see the pieces of wool felt that we got to dye and to the far right below  our  yarn strands. Indigo is a lot more fun to do, it changes color and it requires a more vigilant eye.
AVFKWNaturalDyeClassJune2012 (5)
Once we had our mason jars in the double boiler for an hour we took them out.  They need to be rinsed in water with some vinegar and a mild detergent ,then rinsed on clear water, warm to hot.  Gloves should be worn at all times and depending on the other things that you are doing a mask is not a bad idea. It's OK to dye stuff , but you really don't want to inhale the powders and chemicals into your lungs.
AVFKWNaturalDyeClassJune2012 (13)
Once we got our yarn rinsed and washed, we were given a card to put the yarn strands on.  I made mine over, it was not pretty, lol. You have the yarn types, the date, the mordant and what you use for dyeing. This ladies are well organized.  The card we made was hand written, but the same effect than the one I am showing you at this time.
I took the opportunity to purchase some spinning fiber.  Talking about spinning, that is another posting maybe in a day or two.  This class was such a high, that I am not spoiling it with anything trivial. I got some Suri Alpaca to spin.  I am hoping to make some gloves, but more than that I wanted to spin Suri Alpaca.  This is a beautiful grey color.
AVFKWSuri2oz (2)
Kristine is also one of the few people that carries this fiber below.  This is a lady from Vancouver , BC, Canada.  Her fiber and yarns are fantastic to work with.  This is a 50% merino, 25% bamboo and 25 silk. It should be lovely to spin.
AVFKW50Merino25Silk25bamboo (1)
So this concludes a fantastic day at class. I am very happy with the class.  All the classes I have taken from "A Verb For Keeping Warm", have been outstanding and I keep coming for more.  Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Milk Fiber Review

milkyarnHandspun (1)
Here is my milk fiber homespun yarn or handspun. Let's say I spun it by hand on my wheel and call it even , lol. Do I like this fiber for spinning? I have to say no. It is not a great fiber to spin from, but it is a great fiber to ply. This sounds contradictory, but people that spin yarn can relate to it. milkyarnHandspun (3)
In the end I found the yarn to have a bit of luster, but the texture is a bit like paper like.  It is stiff and not springy like wool, so it behaves a bit like silk without the sheen or softness.  I am going to dye this fellow and see how it comes out.
milkyarnHandspun (2)
Going to the review. I did not like this fiber for spinning.  Not recommended for beginner spinners, but if you are a seasoned spinner you should spin it and see what it feels like.  I found it requires more twist than I expect it to hold together, but when plying it was a lot easier to ply.  It has a smell of either cream or butter, or maybe is my mind playing tricks on me. I would rather spin bamboo and flax than milk fiber, and there is nothing like spinning wool, that much I know.  Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Fortunate Spinning Kromski Sonata

KromskiSonataNotions (2)
Sometimes I don't remember that things get old and worn out.  What am I talking about? You know the brake cord for the Scotch Tension on the Kromski?  Well mine was looking sad, but I really did not think it had anything to do with the uptake of the yarn or the way the bobbin moved.  I can tell you that from the beginning I did not like the cord  or the spring that the Kromski Sonata came with.  Some times you have to be careful with the changes you make, because these two elements, the spring and the brake cord are essential to the mechanism of spinning. Changing both may have been troublesome if I had a problem.  Why?  I changed two things and any of the two could have been the problem or both.   I took a chance and got some Hemp cord.  I believe almost any kind of #20 or #10 thread will do, as long as it does not slip.
KromskiSonataNotions (4)
In the picture above , you can clearly see the different spring which the Sonata has and the one dangling was the old one.  The new spring is very strong, so very tiny increments are needed for adjusting the tension .  I really like that.  The new Hemp Cord is working fantastically, I can not believe how easier it is to spin now than before. I am big when it comes to changing stuff.  I did not know if this was going to work 100%, but I was pretty sure. The test was to spin some mohair, and to Navajo ply some silk.  There were no problems, I am actually having to make less effort with my foot treadles,
KromskiSonataNotions (13)
I am still in the testing mode, and I am waiting for the upright post that I am getting as a replacement.  New Voyager has responded well and I have had a good attitude.  Sometimes I forget that being assertive is OK if done with kindness and class.  There is no need for being unkind or giving them a bad attitude , things happen, I am glad I am going to get this issue taken care for good.  The yarn that you are looking at is a single of mohair that I am planning to ply with some Alpaca.  It is going to give it a nice halo. Thanks for stopping by.
KromskiSonataNotions (7)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Sonata Screw Nut Again

KromskiScrewnut2012 (2)
This post is to document the crazy fact about the Kromski Sonata screw nut.  Last year as a matter of fact around May 2011, I got the same problem. The screw nut became loos and thus the wheel is useless.  Again I got ideas for repairing this, but instead of emailing I decided to call these people at New Voyager.  Last year at their suggestion I repaired the screw nut with gorilla glue. This year I am getting a new Post to replace this one.  It would have been nice to have it last year, but it will be OK this year. I bought this wheel brand new around March 2010, I did not buy used, so I need this to be replaces and this year it will happen.  I am honestly hoping that this is the last entry I do about a screw nut being defective on my Kromski, it has a 5 year craftsmanship warranty. A little note,  I go a beautiful loom and it is a Schacht Loom , Thanks for stopping by.
KromskiScrewnut2012 (1)

Monday, June 11, 2012

Felting a Beret

This was my experiment with the yarn that you saw the other day.  I should have made it about 4 inches bigger, but in the end it worked out great.  The lessons of felting are great and it makes a fantastic fabric out of hair and more.  Remember this is an  Alpaca, Wool and silk blend.
PutiTHrutheringerBerete (2)
Felting by hands was not too hard.  I even put it on the washer on hand wash cycle.  I threw it in a zippered pillow case , with some beach shoes.
PutiTHrutheringerBerete (10)
I new from this point that it may have been too short, but it was too big as well for my head.  The opening was about and inch larger.  If I had hair or a bigger head, that would have been no problem , lol.
PutiTHrutheringerBerete (8)
I used a glass plate to give it the shape.  The shaping was easier than I expected. I used clothes pins as well to hold it in place. I don't know if the pattern would have come out the same had it been crochet instead of knit.  The pattern is for a knit Beret.
The picture above shows you what I needed to add after it was made.  Yep, I grabbed the needles and made about a 2.5 inch brim, then I sew it in place and felted the brim by itself.  It worked out exactly as I wanted it to begin with.  I believe the whole project could have benefited from a 3 inch brim and about 2 more inches at the top.
Beretfelting (3)
In the end I am very happy with the outcome.  The color is what I wanted and the shape is fantastic.  I did not expect it to shape this way, but it does look good. I hope you enjoyed the hand dye, felting journey of this Beret.  The pattern is made by Kent Turman for a moss stitch Beret.  I adapted it to make it a felted Beret. Thanks for stopping by!
Beretfelting (1)

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Adventure of Overdye ,felting

So here is a project that I want to make. I want to  felt the beret, a pattern by my friend Kent. I have to admit that at this moment I don't really have enough yarn in my stash, lol. I have accomplished one of my yarn diet goals.I do have more yarn than this, it is just in bags for a specifi project. So with Jacquard Dyes and a crockpot I was able to make the three skeins of yarn at the bottom the same color,
hand overdye (1)
Here you have the yarn has been unified by color over dye. I first over dye the yarn with green, the yellow and the blue took it nicely, but there was a variation on the yellow. I decided that it needed some blue to unify the color a bit more and I used Teal. The result was exactly what I wanted. BeretSwatch (1)
I did not know if this yarn was going to take felting, so I did a little swatch and felted it by hand. The results were acceptable, it felted easily. At 15% silk this wool /Alpaca blend felts without any problems. I made a swatch of 15 or so stitches, then I warmed up some water with soap and went to work. Thanks for stopping by.
BeretSwatch (3)

Sunday, June 03, 2012

Silk Bells Hand Dyed

I was able to order some inexpensive silk caps r bells, because I wanted to hand dye them with natural dyes.  I can tell you is not an easy task, it takes time.  I had these bells, which were cream colored, soaking in alum and cream of tartar for at least 12 hours.  I made the Lac (burgundy color),  Cutch (golden brown), longwood Grey (dark grey), Osage Orange, the light yellow to orange color,  I have registered to take a class some time this month and I hope I learn a lot.  This is probably easier if I knew exactly what it is expected to be done and to have the same results constantly.  Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, June 02, 2012

Silk Bell Caps Hand dyed

A few years ago, I got some supplies from Earthues for natural dyeing.  So here is the dye stock ready and cooling for tomorrow along with the Bells soaking in Alum and Cream of tartar with a few drops of synthrapol.
I am nervous , yet excited. lol. I did most of it to dye at least 4 ounces each. I have about 70 grams of silk.  This bottle should be enough to dye 1 pound of fabric,yarn, roving, so enough to get some swirling action and have fun. I want to do Indigo, but that is some other time. I want to dedicate my total attention to Indigo as it is a bit more complex, requiring more attention, and in a way less work.  The potions should be good if unused for about 6 months or a year I believe.SilkBellsSoak
So the silk caps are getting wet.  I had no idea how hard they were to get water into them, they need to soak for about 12 hours or more.  Hope to have some dyeing action in a few minutes and create a lovely mirage of four silk caps which is how many I have.  Thanks for stopping by.

Almost two years without blogging August 2020

Life can be a bowl of strawberries when cheries are not available.   It has been almost two years since I have been in this blog.  I have s...