Saturday, July 17, 2021

Kid's Art: Weaving

There are different ways to make a weaving project for kids, but the easiest is with a cardboard loom. I made mine out of very thin carboard so it is easier to cut. I made notches for the "warp" threads that are 1/2" apart. You will want to make an EVEN NUMBER of cuts!

In weaving, the threads that are held in the loom (and usually vertical) are called the "warp" and the threads that you weave are called the "weft." You can use anything you want for the warp and weft. Yarn, thread, strips of fabric, and ribbon are all fun options. For this project I used crewel embroidery thread for the warp and strips of scrap fabric for the weft. 
     To put the warp thread in the loom, I secured one end with some tape on the back, then ran the thread the length of the loom on the front. (SEE picture of FRONT) You can wrap the warp thread all the way around, but I think that is a bit of a waste of thread, so on the back side I only go to the adjacent notch. (SEE picture of BACK) secure the end with another piece of tape.

Now you can start weaving your weft. In traditional weaving, you use one long thread and weave back and forth through the warp threads. For this project, I just had kids weave individual strips of fabric. You will want them to be about twice as wide as your loom, it will make the finishing steps much easier.

Younger kids might need help making sure to alternate going over and under. I had them weave 16 strips of fabric, but in these pics I ended up with 18. It's so fun weaving them, I ended up with 17 before I knew it and just added one more instead of taking one out. You will need to weave an EVEN NUMBER!

The project ends up much smaller than this, but to finish the weft edges it is easier to keep the strips of fabric spread out.

 Next, you will tie the strips of fabric together in pairs. Again, younger kids will need help with this. Tie simple square knots (not granny knots) but don't tie them super tight. If you make them too tight you will squeeze your warp threads together, and you want to keep them as straight as possible. 

Trim off the ends after each knot. Keep going till they are all tied together. This is why you needed an even number of weft strips! (SEE first picture below)


Then you scrunch all the strips of fabric together in the middle. (SEE second picture above) Scrunch is the technical term 😆
Now you are going to tie knots in the warp threads the same way. To do this you will have to use scissors to cut them off the loom. I find that it is MUCH easier if I only cut two at a time. Again, don't cinch your knots up tight. Just tie a square knot next to the fabric. 

Trim off the ends of the thread after the knot. After you are finished you have a nice coaster sized tapestry. You can play around with making a bigger loom or using different "threads" to weave with. You can make the notches on your loom closer together to make the warp threads closer together, you can try using one long thread to weave the weft back and forth. The point is to have fun and be creative!


Friday, October 25, 2013

Horse Camping &Trail Riding

Since getting back from Santa Fe I have gotten to do a little riding. It's that time of year where I just want to play hookie from work every day and go ride. Lately I've ridden a bunch on the good ol' riding-distance-from-the-barn trails, as well as a couple of lakes nearby. My pal Christi and I rode at lake Arcadia in Edmond and had a blast. Even though our horses both refused to walk through water (they jumped.) 
We saw tons of deer and met a nice lady who we ended up riding with. I learned from her the reason deer don't run away when they see you on a horse is that they can't smell the human scent over the horse scent. She said that is why it is illegal to hunt from horseback (I didn't know that it was.) Of course, a deer can be startled by a horse if it didn't hear you coming (yup..fallen off that way..) but all the deer we saw heard us coming and only looked up only briefly before going on about their business.

I didn't get a picture of any deer, but here's a picture of Christi taking a picture of me:

And Bryan and I went horse-camping at Bell Cow Lake in Chandler. 
I learned how to set up a proper highline and how much fun a poker ride is.
Here's Stormy modeling the awesome highline: 

Here's a great website that shows how it's done. I used ratchet straps for tree savers...but I'm going to buy heavier duty ones before the next camping trip--these were not rated for more than about 1000 lbs and Stormy could have broken them if she had really wanted to. But the worked great for tightening the rope after it stretched a little every few hours.

I LOVE horse camping. I wish I could go every weekend. There are a lot of people in the OETRA who are retired and just camp out with their horses at the trails Thursday through Sunday on a regular basis. I'm a lot jealous of them. But I'm grateful for what I have...I still find myself looking at Stormy and thinking to myself "I can't believe I actually have my own horse!" 

If I can't horse-camp as often as I'd like I can at least Pin about it:

Thursday, October 24, 2013

How to Successfully Introduce your cat to your Not-a-Cat-Person Husband

1. Bring your cat over to live with you. (Mine have been staying at my parent's until recently)
2. Make it clear to your cat that you love it and want it to cuddle with YOU.

The result is a cat who wants nothing to do with you, and only wants to hang out with the person who doesn't care whether they have a cat in their lap or not.

With any luck that person will be won over by the obvious favoritism

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Marraige and Honeymoon

Bryan and I are married now

And we went to Santa Fe, NM for our honeymoon. It was a blast! We already plan to go back again. We want to drive next time 1. because it would be nice to have a car while there to see things outside of walking distance. And 2. because flying was terrible. Their tiny airport apparently only allows for small planes. (Y'know...the kind where you feel the turbulence really well.)

Here's a pic on top of some hill that has a long windy path to the top where there USED to be a fort of some kind:

And after the wedding and the honeymoon I got bridal portraits taken (yes, I know that's backwards.) The photo shoot was at the farm where Stormy lives. And most pictures had Stormy in them. Here's one:

The photographer was Mandy Stansberry. Here's her website, and her facebook page. She took fantastic photos at our wedding, too!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Big Year

I haven't posted in a long time for a good reason. I have been BUSY.
Let me break down the crazy into a timeline:

* In March my best girlfriend and roommate told me she was pregnant and moving out in June.
* In April/May I got several portrait commissions. (It's always flood or drought in this business)
* Also in May started looking for places to rent and found a PERFECT trailer with a storm shelter and 6 acres--meaning I could keep my horse right in my own back yard.
* Then the landlord said the lease was for a year--minimum.
* Then my boyfriend told me to not sign a year lease somewhere
* In June my boyfriend proposed to me (and I said yes)

We are getting married in September (59 days from today to be exact) Which means all the major wedding planning stuff has had to be done immediately. Which hasn't really been difficult, it's just been busy. Oh, and I'm still supposed to be out of my house by the end of July (7 days from today to be exact.)
The boyfriend fiance and I haven't found a house yet.
Since I'm not the live-together-before-being-married type, I will have to put everything in storage and stay at my parents for the last 52 days before I get married. So I have been busy wedding planning, painting portraits, packing everything I own (and trying to sell some of it on craigslist.) And wouldn't you know it, my Etsy page is doing booming business this month! Now my Etsy store isn't huge so "booming" for me means 13 sales so far. But those are orders that have to be made and shipped while still doing my regular job and all this other stuff.

I'm too happy and excited and eager for September to get here to be TOO stressed though :)

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Season of Change

I have several portrait orders lined up right now, which is sooo great. I had a bit of a dry spell last year after I stopped really promoting myself. I got a bit burnt out to be honest and wanted to have longer in between portraits and I got it. I went from having done 30+ portraits in a year to, oh..10 or less? But I also had plenty of time to paint my own paintings and experiment with my style a little. Now I have a lot of paintings, and a several prints, and a bunch of ready-to-ship pillow pets sitting around. Oh ya, and I'm moving. Where to...I don't know. This is not an unhappy move, but it's come at a slightly bad time. And since I HATE moving stuff. especially stuff that I realize (when I'm packing it) I haven't used for years, I'm going to be having my first ever garage sale. Soon. I have stuff listed on Craigslist and will surely end up donating lots of stuff to the Luther Service Center. But on top of all that I would like to just sell a lot of my inventory of pillow pets and prints. So. I'm having a huge sale in my Etsy shop right now (Coupon code HAPPYCUSTOMER gets you 50% off.) I have deactivated several listings, things like paintings I'm not willing to part with for less than the original price, and custom portraits. But will probably be adding more prints as I figure out my inventory.

Now please keep me in your thoughts and prayers as I try and pick where to live and for how long. One option is a trailer (that I like. with a tornado shelter) with 2.5 acres (Having Stormy outside my front door?! Yes please!) but he wants a longer lease than I want to sign. And the other options...well I don't really like them....