I thought I knew most about what there is to know about spinning – I have studied it for many years, and the many new spinning books and videos that have been published over last decade, have had little news to me. And I don’t mean to sound arrogant, but I have had the best tutoring since I was about 10…..
Until last night, where I was kicked back to beginners class – in a very good way, by Margaret Stove, who’s video “Spinning for lace” is for sale at Interweave right here, for $10,xx, or about 55 DKK. The best money I have spent in years!
I have only watched the first part yet, there was so much in there I just had to try, so I paused and dug out some very fine fleece that I washed, blew on it to dry it quickly, and tried spinning by Margarets method. She is right! And I love the way she explains why it works, backed up by microscope pictures of fibers and other graphics.
I strongly recommend this video for all who wants more control over their spinning, and wants to spin thin, even yarns from raw fleece.
I am working on samples of fleece and thin spun yarn to show you, one of these days… I am so glad I got this kick, it has really awakened my lust for spinning. I work best when challenged!
I was so inspiret by a bracelet made my Corina Tettinger here (scroll down till you find Etched Batique Mini Orrbs), and wanted to try making that particular colour combination/reaction, so I set out to play:
Some of the dots are made with a homemade blend of 1 part Cim Leaky pen and Effetre Petrol 218 – refered to as mix in the following recipes. E is short for effetre:
1: E-224 + Cim leaky ink
2: E-244 + E-036
3: E-224 + Kugler Silver Blue
4: E-224 + mix
5: Cim Fremen + E-218
6: E-232 + Leaky Pen
7: Cim Fremen + Mix
8: E-228 + E-218
9: E-236 + Leaky Pen
10: Kugler turqoise + Mix
11: Kugler turqoise + Kugler Silver Blue
12: E-228 + Kugler Silver Blue
13: Cim Electric Avenue + E-218
14: E-228 + Mix
15: E-218 + Kugler Silver Blue
16: E-218 + E-036
17: E-224 + E-218
18: Cim Celadon + mix
Maybe I need to put a name on the Effetre numbers?
Here they are:
E-217…………..Light Copper Green
E-224…………….Light Sky Blue
E-228…………….Dark Sky Blue
I have been playing with effects:
These are all made on a Effetre black base bead, with big dots of Ivory, Dark Ivory, Si or combinations of these, followed by a tiny dot of Effetre Intense black. Lots of heat. Great fun!
Then came these:
Again, black base bead, the middle one is anice white though – Ivory and Dark Ivory with and without SI stringer, and a tiny dot of Effetre petroleum green, and lots of heat. How cool is that!
I wonter what other colours may perform like this???
Today is a big day, I hear the first lark singing over the fields…it is really heartwarming and very welcome after such a long, cold winter. I haven’t seen him yet, so no pictures.
I find as I get older I appreciate things like this more and more, small everyday stuff, but still a confirmation that the cycle of nature and life carries on.
Now to some glass:
My first clear glass was Effetre 004, scummy and not very good, but it might as well be me, what did I know. I read about Lauscha and got some of that, much much better – and more expesive.
So I was recommended the Vetrofond clear, and bought a load with my first order at Tuffnell in UK.
That was acting really, really strange, sooty, brownish and stripey – besides very shocky. Still, I had more confident in the glass than my own skills, so spend a while testing, adsjusting flame, and among other things learned how to avoid impurities in the flame by always keeping the gas hose ABOVE the top of the gass bottle, to ensure impurities to run back down in the bottle rather than collect in a coil of the hose.
Got the whole lot cleaned out, hose, burner, nozzles – didn’t help.
Then I read about pickling the glass, and being a goldsmith I always have a sulphuric acid bath for pickling soldered metals, so tried that.
Okay, it was dawning on me that metalwork and glasswork has a lot in common – so tried to use some soldering flux normally used with silver, painted it on the glass rod and warmed up, paint again so the entire surface is covered in white flux.
That worked! It also worked on other colours, that I at the time couldn’t control so they came out in some form of grey…and rubino oro stayed lovely clear ruby coloured as well.
Only drawback of this is that the surface of the melted glass acts differently, so if you want to use another colour for decoration that has to be fluxed too, otherwise you cant get it to stick on your bed.
I dug out some leftovers of Effetre clear and Lauscha, and made some beads in one go for comparison:
These are not fluxed, but they are all pickled.
From left you have Lauscha, Vetrofond and Effetre.
The big bead in front is Vetrofond made by my friend who has a minor oxy-torch setup. On that it wasn’t very clear either, very bubbly (builds big bubbles), and has some faint streaks, hard to catch with my camera.
The big question is, if Vetrofond clear is simply not suitable for a single fuel torch??? I of course contacted Tuffnell, they hadn’t heard of any problems with this particular batch but offered a replacement – what I would like to know is if Vetrofond clear per definition is something I should avoid.
Anybody out there who can tell?
After a long time of silence I decided to start fresh – this time with my own site.
At the moment making glass beads, flamework, has caught my interest, so other things have been pushed aside for the time being.
Here is my work place:
The torch is my goldsmith single fuel burner fastened in a vise – It is not as big as a Hothead, but works the same way, only more adjustable.
On both sides I have raised the table 10 cm, to give more elbow/wrist support, as a goldsmith I am used to work in this position. The rounds thingies are soft leather cushions filled with sand.
In the background left is an electric slow-cooker with vermicullite, I have no oven, and this way the beads don’t crack so easily.
A closeup of the burner:
There is a selection of nozzles to change the size of the flame, this is the second largest and the one I find easiest to control. The bigger one gets very hot and is also quite bushy, good for melting larger quantities like when blending colours. But difficult to control, so I don’t use it much.
On this one I can make a nice neutral flame, even a slightly oxidizing (though small) flame.
I find it challenging to use this setup, as I can’t spend lots on equipment, and though it has taken me a while to really learn to judge and control the flame, it was well worth it!
Here are some of my beads, made for colour samples:
More to come, stay tuned!