Bluster Bay Beauty

Alright…So after my Halcyon rant, I checked my mail and saw that my Bluster Bay mini EFS came. πŸ™‚ I must say I am quite happy to have it. I rushed to finish putting on the second placemat warp. And I (Thankfully) only broke ONE warp yarn. Yay!! I was hoping not to break any this time, but one is better than 5. I am getting better at winding on. And part of that is because I’m doing the one man winding technique correctly now. Yay!! I think part of the reason why the one yarn broke was because there were three yarns per dent (10 dent reed, 30 epi) and they became a bit tangled. I sometimes get a little clueless and forget to stop and check if anything is unusually tight that I need to fix. Well…Hopefully I’ll be able to get these two done pretty quick.

Oh! So back to the shuttle. First of all, winding a paper quill on an electric drill is a bad idea…I don’t have a bobbin winder so I usually borrow my husband’s drill and stick a pen or pencil in it and then stick the bobbin on and wind it. I’ve discovered that it really doesn’t matter how you wind a bobbin as long as you don’t go too close to the edges…But pirns are a whole ‘nother story. They need to be wound a certain way so that the yarn will pull off smoothly as you throw the shuttle. This is difficult to achieve when using a drill. 😦 Ben said he would build one for me but we have to find some plans for it. So we’ll see. Hopefully we can figure something out.

As for the shuttle itself, it’s beautiful. It obviously has been made with care. The one thing that…Not really bugs me…but bugs me…is… Well the inside of the shuttle wasn’t sanded as smoothly as the outside. The only reason why I even noticed this is because my husband is a woodworker and a sanding freak. He loves sanding and sand paper. Strange? No. Nerdy? Yes. πŸ™‚ But I love him and I think it’s cute. Anyway, I took an intro to wood working class a few semesters ago and that’s the one thing that I always got “points off” for on my pieces. I never took as much time to sand down the bottoms of the pieces because I figured, “No one’s gonna see that part.” But one of the main things that we are taught at the school we attend is good craftsmanship.

It’s continuously drilled into our minds no matter what medium you are in. In fibers, you take the time to press open all the little seams so that a wall hanging will hang flat. In clay you use just as much care finishing the bottom of a pot as you do the shape. And with wood, you sand and finish the entire piece equally. What our instructor told us when we were building tables was, “If someone is drunk at your house and falls under the table you want them to be able to look at the bottom of it and think, ‘That’s just as nice as the top of it.'” πŸ™‚ Silly, but it gets the point across. The entire shuttle (Minus the interior) is smooth as silk and feels wonderful to the touch. But the interior is still a bit rough. It was sanded to an extent, but not treated with the same care as the exterior. Oh well. I’m climbing down from my soap box now. I just believe with my whole heart that craftsmanship is of the utmost importance in any and every craft endeavor. Which is why I bought this shuttle in the first place: To help my weaving craftsmanship.

It will take some getting used to because it’s a bit lighter than my Leclerc boat shuttles and thus throws differently. Also, I think I miss the sound of the bobbin rattling around in the shuttle as it throws. That will also take getting used to. But so far it has already kept my selvages even. I’m still learning how much tension to use so that it’s not drawing in too much, but I like the whole thing so far. I can’t wait to get weaving!!
~JoAnna

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