Monday, February 15, 2010

Olympic proportions

I just love watching the Olympics and of course this time around it's extra special because Canada is playing host. I'm not sure about you, but I find so many of the stories very emotional and as I ride the rollercoaster of highs and lows, I'm not ashamed to admit that I've gone through more than a few Kleenexes.

From the minute I cracked open my special bottle of Coke Zero (saved from the Torch Relay in December) in honour of the amazing Opening Ceremonies on Friday night....until now, I have been busy - and not just curled up on the couch, either. While watching many of our athletes compete in their sports, I've been partaking in my own version of the Olympics -- the rug hooker's version.

So far this weekend I've cut the equivalent of 26 yards of wool (for some new kits I've been working on) and I've also marbleized over 45 yards of wool. Both were marathon events.

I've been wanting to do a big marbleizing session for several months now, using a stockpiled bunch of off-the-bolt wool that AJ gave me. The main reason from procrastinating was the sheer volume of wool that was waiting to be marbleized -- so many batches = a lot of time. I'd been thinking of ways that I could speed things up for myself...and came up with a new twist on the method that worked well for me.

Using 1/4 yard pieces of wool, I layered 5 on top of one another (instead of the more usual 3), then rolled up along the short edge (to produce rolls about 18" wide). I didn't pay too much attention to having the rolls all be perfect....then I took pieces of string and yarn and wrapped up the rolls, pulling tight whenever I crisscrossed. Three of these logs fit perfectly into my stainless steel insert - and I was able to dye almost 4 yards of wool at a time, using just one pan.

Some of the pieces are just beautiful - almost too pretty to consider ripping and cutting. Some of them are a little subdued in comparison, with less variation. All of the pieces are much better than their former, boring, selves. Marbleizing is always fun because the outcome is so unpredictable. It's kinda like the Olympics. [ Go Canada go! ;-) ]