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Saturday, October 6, 2012

Finding an Old Thread

I view life as a tapestry, with each person, animal, object... from the blades of grass and grains of sand, to the computer on which I type and all its components... as threads woven together in a complex pattern by those called the Fates, the Norns and even the Goddess Frigga. As a hexeri -- a designer and painter of the spiritual folk ark designs known as "Pennsylvania Dutch (Deutsch)" hex signs -- when I am working for my clients and customers, it is as if I am sitting on the weaving bench alongside the Weavers. The work of the hex does not create the threads but "tweaks" them with subtle pushes of the energy to move things in the direction for which the sign was painted. Think of this as an application of the "Butterfly Effect."

As the tapestry of our lives is woven, there are threads that run in associated close proximity for long periods... those of our family, we would hope; those relating to objects of serious interest often hang close for years as well. Sometimes, though, a thread will hop, skip and jump though the weave as we pick up a hobby, for example, then let it go by the wayside for a time as other concerns take our attention.

The various threads of fiber art constitute one theme that keeps returning, in various forms, into my life. In the 1970s I was introduced to spinning and weaving by a friend in Colorado. I made a Navajo spindle for spinning (which I still have) and first borrowed, then purchased, a loom.

Life took some turns. Marriage, small house, children and the threads in my life were of embroidery floss and boughten yarn for knitting and crochet.

Many years later, far along the Pagan path, Frigga and the other Gods and Goddesses of the northern tradition came calling me home. Home, as in back to my beloved norther latitudes after many years in climates where "winter" did not even come close to feeling right for me. Home, as into the fold of the Gods of my ancestors. And home, as back to the traditional fiber arts of spinning and weaving and yes, even knitting and crochet.

Acquiring the tools for these pass times ... well that is a story in itself. I have often said that to do anything in life requires a threefold application of  Time, Money and Hassle. With sufficient money, of course, the time and hassle components can often be minimized. In the absence of abundant capital -- a state I know well -- liberal application of time and hassle can usually reach the same objective.

My spinning wheel came after many months of haunting online sale sites;  not from any of the sites, but from a friend who was downsizing for a major move. The lovely Indian Head spinner (admittedly on a less than lovely base) came all the way from California to Maine, being carried by fellow travelers of our spiritual and fiber tribes.

I continues to haunt the sites, looking for looms. There are always lots of looms for sale, if you have money. Last year I found a small table loom -- missing parts -- for free. Have not gotten it repaired yet as much for lack of table space on which to put it as anything! But I still wanted a floor loom, but needed to allocate the hundreds of bucks -- minimum -- asked for such tools for true needs, when the funds were available. Somehow, though, I just never stopped clicking on my two regular sites and this past week found a huge old rug loom -- the Weaver's Friend -- for only $50. THAT I would spend, especially as the loom was in working condition.

The loom is huge! Over 50" wide and deep and weighs in at 300 lbs. We live in a smallish (and it just got smaller!  Ha!) 2 bedroom mobile home. If we had not just finished replacing the front door with a large sliding door, it would have been pretty near impossible to get it in. However, the doors were installed a couple of weeks ago and the porch replaced this past week so the project was on! First task was to clear a large enough space for it!

We did not pick it up until 4 pm, so the seller's husband could help load it and got home as the sun was getting low on the horizon. We tarped it against the dew and possible rain (which did come in a brief shower this morning) and brought it in today.

Ramps from my pickup to the porch and a come-along working from a 4x4 spanning the width of the slider door opening pretty much brought it right up.

First it balanced on the porch ...

...then over the threshold and in!

Now it is in its place of honor, waiting for the fall projects to be completed so I can spend more time inside, getting the loom and the wheel ready to go full speed ahead!