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WWW: women’s work exhibit, AI knitting, and woolen Tulalip traditions

The Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft (East Sussex, UK) has an exhibit on now through 13 October 2019, Women’s Work. It focuses on the work of craftswomen who turned their practice’s into successful businesses between the two World Wars. Learn more at ditchlingmuseumartcraft.org.uk Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Computer Science & Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (aka MIT CSAIL, Massachusetts, USA) have come up with a new approach to ...

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www: distinguishing blue; a new knitted suit; goats

There’s Evidence Humans Didn’t Actually See Blue Until Modern Times The Himba tribe struggled to see blue, but can distinguish many more shades of green than many. “This all suggests that, until they had a word from it, it’s likely that our ancestors didn’t actually see blue. Or, more accurately, they probably saw it as we do now, but they never really noticed it. And that’s pretty cool.” Knitting with a repurpose: Woman makes suit of plastic bags Rosa Ferrigno knit a suit from plastic grocery bags. Please enjoy these goats on a slide. (links to a video on Twitter)

Spring+Summer Knittyspin : Color and Combs

The Spring + Summer issue of Knitty is live and that means a new Knittyspin column. This issue I explore how to load combs with fiber. More specifically, and so much closer to my heart, how to load  commercially prepped fiber on combs for blending color. Each way results in a different effect to the finished yarn. The number of combing passes contributes to how much the fibers are blended too. Curious and ready to comb? Click on over and see the difference for your self.     It seems like spring would never come! But now it’s here and there are fleeces to be had everywhere. Are you fleece shopping ...

WWW: knitting robots ; unconventional weaving; periodic table of the elements

Do robots dream of knitting? Knitting machines exist, but there’s something different about knitting with two sticks and string. At the University of Berlin (Germany), research by Dr. Pat Treusch is underway to determine how to teach a robot, PANDA, to knit. You can learn more about PANDA at Do robots dream of knitting? – Träumen Roboter vom Stricken?. Can you weave that? For artist Anne Samat the answer is often yes. She mixes traditional yarns with unconventional materials like rattan sticks or metal. [Photo Anne’s work Freedom 1 … To Be Me (rattan sticks, yarns, washers, rakes, PVC chains, home ...

A Weaver’s Guide to Yarn

I have weaving on my mind these days. I’m ready to fire up my Cricket rigid heddle loom with something gorgeous and easy. The project I’m starting is a combination of handwoven yarn and commercial yarn. Choosing yarn is one of those things that can stop a new weaver from starting weaving. It’s overwhelming, and really we just want to use our stash or showcase our handwoven yarns. A Weaver’s Guide to Yarn by Liz Gipson is a gem. It gives you the basics on how yarns work in weaving, and makes picking yarns a whole lot less stressful. If picking yarn is keeping you from scratching your weaving ...

WWW: ancient sewing needles; math & knitting; Philippine weaving

Sewing Needles Reveal the Roots of Fashion. Not only were they used to sew seams, but also to provide embellishment. (Photo: F. d’Errico/L. Doyon) [via JM] This article explores the research of Elisabetta Matsumoto. She looks into how different stitch types determine the stretch and shape of knitted items. Not only is it useful traditional knitting but also for material science. (Photo: “Topological defects in the square can shape the (a) out-of-plane and (b) in-plane deformations of knitted textiles.” Elisabetta Matsumoto) The Great Women Project Revives The Philippine Weaving Industry. The textile ...

Schacht is 50! Class Openings Coming Up

Schacht Spindle Company turns 50 this year! Schacht has been a huge part of my fiber life ever since the late 80s when I bought my first loom. But my true devotion didn’t start until I bought my Matchless sometime in the early 90s. Soon (about five minutes) after I learned to turn fiber into a lumpy bit of yarn I saw my first Matchless. It was lust at first sight. It was gorgeous, it was smooth. It could do all of these things that other spinners told me were good, but I would have no idea what they meant until years later. I put that wheel on layaway and paid it off a little every month. I think it’s the ...

WWW: Drought & Navajo Shepherds; Handicraft Prize Winners; Ukiyo-e Search

Irene Bennalley walks her herd of Navajo-Churro sheep out to grazing land where extreme drought has gripped the Four Corners region near Two Grey Hills, New Mexico. Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times
This article looks at the impact of drought on Navajo shepherds in the SouthWest. The Navajo Sheep Project set up a drought relief fund to help shepherds and their sheep sustain this latest challenge. via LG. Photo: Irene Bennalley walks her herd of Navajo-Churro sheep out to grazing land where extreme drought has gripped the Four Corners region near Two Grey Hills, New Mexico. Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times Three keen needleworkers, all in their 90s, have come away with first and highly commended prizes for their handicrafts at the Newcastle (Australia) show. Photo: Whiddon Redhead residents Linda Felton, ...

New Spinning Tool: Thumb Flick

This past weekend I taught at Susan’s Fiber Shop Spinning Retreat, it was great fun! At one point in the festivities Susan whipped out this cool little tool – a thumb flick. It’s exactly what it sounds like, a tiny flick that slips over your thumb to use to tease open locks. I used it to flick open locks for blending board batts, and it worked perfectly.       It’s tiny and light and costs about $10, what’s not to love? I haven’t seen them anywhere else, and Susan just got them in. If you want one the quickest way is to call her shop.         ...

WWW: a jumper for a guinea pig; the history of orange; celebrating repair

tumeric powder
A knitting group is making jumpers for people’s unwell pets. Gingernut the guinea pig looks rather fetching in his green jumper don’t you think? The History of the Color Orange offers a brief look at this bold and dynamic color. Grace Bonney of Design Sponge posted a fascinating floor to instagram. It reminded her of Kintsugi is the Japanese art of repairing pottery with gold, silver, or platinum. That had me thinking of visible mending. I turned to the knitty archives and found this 2006 article from our Kate Atherley, on Repairing Knitwear. Also of potential interest to knittyblog readers is ...

Blending Board Fun: Making Roving

Spinners seem to be excited about blending boards again, those perfect rolags and mini batts are irresistable.  I know I’ve been playing with mine after about a year of not even thinking about it much. I have a cherry Clemes and Clemes blending board that works perfectly every time. I’ve been making smooth rolags, mini crazy batts with tons of add ins, and roving. Roving from a blending board? Yes, and it’s so quick. It’s best to use a smoother type of fiber mixture when pulling roving off of a blending board. Noils, and sari silk threads are ok, but big lucious dyed locks don’t work as ...