Long time, no post. Another hot week here but temperatures were in the low 30C's and not in the highs.
Tomorrow we are promised 27C which sounds like better weather for making chutney, definitely plum and maybe rhubarb. We went out to our normal blackberry spot with a friend but found that 99% were very green and plan to return in a fortnight (yes, Aussies really say fortnight for 2 weeks). I picked our first full sized home grown tomatoes and made another batch of zucchini pickle relish. The garden in general looks good as we have had some small bits of rain. At the right you will see this year's new baby possum with mum making short work of an over-ripe banana. The bub wasn't interested in the fruit and was not thrilled about being petted but tolerated it. They are both really soft and most of our neighbourhood gang will eat out of your hand and let you pet them. I know it is frowned upon by some to feed possums but I like them and they are cheap entertainment for The Imp. Every year we get another baby introduced to our bananas and watch them grow up and then leave mum. Sometimes there are growling matches on the front porch and frequently thundering feet across the roof at night. We really had no idea there were so many around and we can't tell them apart except "the big one" or "the skittish one". It is amusing to have a possum hang by its tail over your head reaching out little hands. We also have baby cockatoos in the trees making grinding noises and I spotted 4 new galahs sitting in (of all places) a plane tree in the middle of a local shopping centre
Another friend at work who does exquisite handmade books gave me some guidance on how to organize my spinning record keeping, something I have been horrible at. Sometimes I didn't keep any of the unspun fibre so I have no record. The others have many little plastic bags of fibre that I will have to try and remember where I bought and hopefully find a sample in the stash of what it became. The (almost) final stage of some of the fabled English Leicester is below. The first band cut off the inkle loom, about 3 yards worth. Selvages are all over the place and even the warping isn't totally right but it's a start and by lining them up as I did in the photo, I am trying to illustrate what they will become when laid side by side and sewn together to make "fabric" for a bag. I am slowly learning that it's better to do something with your output than have it mature in the stash not becoming any thing. The wool is still quite lustrous and the colours nice, even if they aren't what I was aiming at. I have been devouring stuff about weaving in prep for the course starting in (yikes) a little over a fortnight. I hope my poor legs will be up to it. Losing weight has helped my knees but not the muscles in my legs.
I test spun on John Reeves' lightest spindle and it works quite well, altho I do prefer the shepherd's creeok type hook and not the round cup-hook that many makers seem to use since they are cheap and easily available. I am spinning some wool roving bought in Bendigo last year that I said was intended for socks and still is, but I am having an easier time spinning finely on a spindle no matter how long the staple. It is dark green. I am on the home stretch of the cardigan, almost finished the entire body, minus button bands. I am currently anamoured with Lucy Neatby's patterns after listening to Brenda's last podcast and have just ordered 3 from her. The pattern for "Cables after whiskey" is something that looks like a lot of fun.