Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Braided Rug Day 1

What to do this winter with the long winter nights? The sheep are hopefully pregnant, laying around and eating hay all day. The goats love visits as long as they come with a taste of grain. The pups enjoy the snow, running around like crazed beasts. I think my chickens are on a permanent strike. No eggs. They are a little over three years old. New chicks coming in the spring. Now I find that I have some time on my hands. I love making braided rugs. They are timeless. Before Christmas I came across this site for making braided rugs. I liked her rugs, and the dvd's would show me how to do each step.
A few years ago Alex and I went to Canterbury, NH and learned how to make this braided rug. I still have mine and it sits on the stair landing. I just couldn't remember how to do it. Hence the need for step by step instructions on a dvd.
I cleaned up the craft room (pushed the scrapbooking supplies to the periphery). As you can tell I have to go to Home Depot and pick up a track light so that I can work at night. It is a big room with plenty of space and two tables. I can leave my sewing machine set up and close the door to keep the critters out. Abbey would love to go in and push everything onto the floor.
These are the 7 colors that I am using for my first rug. Crimson, maroon, burgundy, grey, white, black, and black and white check.
I watched the video twice over the last few days to make sure that I am starting off right. I'm still not sure but here we go. I measured and cut starter strips at 4 inch intervals.
Then used up any pent up energy ripping these strips into 5 ft strips. I got a strange look from the lady at the Oxford Mill Store this past weekend when I told her that the strips would be 4 inches wide. Marge's rugs are thick and last for many years. Most rugs use 2inch strips of coat weight wool. Here we go.....
I folded up the strips and labeled each pile with the color and amount of strips.
This is as far as I got and then the light started to fade. I will finish tearing these other colors. The black and white check has to be cut. I want to start early in the morning so that I can coil these strips into braidable coils. I know, right now it doesn't make much sense but watch the video a couple of times and you will know what I mean.
I will go to Home Depot first thing so Ted can hang the track light for me. I can't wait to get this rug done. There is something that makes me feel good inside when I make something that will go on.
We finally got DSL in Bradford, ME. I can't believe it. I downloaded 8 pictures in less than 2 minutes. When we first started setting up the electric and phone before moving into the farmhouse I called the Bradford Town Hall and asked about cable. The friendly lady on the other end of the phone burst into a fit of laughter. I said okay, satellite. I then asked about Internet. I though I had lost her there for a minute. She was laughing so hard that she couldn't catch her breath. I again said okay, satellite. Well, I know that satellite TV is great and satellite Internet is worse than giving birth. Maybe that is an exaggeration but not by far. We were somewhat connected with Wild Blue Internet Service. Only on unclouldy days when the sun and earth are aligned with Jupiter and Mars is in the second house. Wasn't that a song? Well, I wasn't singing. I'm so glad to give up Wild Blue. Now I can "bundle" my phone, internet and tv into a package that is cheaper than what I was paying for internet.
I will try to blog the rug making. I hope it turns out like the one in my head. It is beautiful and doesn't stand up like a sombrero and isn't shaped like a banana.
Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm.


Peggy said...

can't wait to see the next lesson! I am learning so I can try my hand at it. Isn't DSL wonderful!!!!!

Marie said...

Your rug is going to look great! I am hopeing to do a similiar rug, but with braided roving from my icelandic's.
When we moved into our home 6 years ago. There was no telephone line within a mile, we had to haul water, and no postal service to our driveway. So it was a huge surprise when we went to the phone company and they said 'Oh, we'll just bury a telephone line to your house and, yes, you will be able to get DSL internet' It is so wonderful! Still no postal service to our house, but did get a water line put in.
Happy rug making!

tonya said...

Congrats on the dsl, I'm sure it will be a world of difference! I am excited to see the rug when you are finished! Have you seen the book on making rugs from your roving? I think it's "the shepherds rug" I'm hoping to try it someday myself.. goodness knows there's enough wool around here, just a matter of getting it all carded up! Hope you enjoy your rugmaking :) It does sound like a perfect winter project.

IsobelleGoLightly said...

My lady's mom and her grandma used to braid rugs. They'd cut up old wool coats and other wool things to make the rug, which made it nice and colorful. They last for years and years. If you don't have enough old coats of your own you can go to the Good Will store and pick up some old coats. Fun!

LindaSueBuhl said...

Oh I'm so excited about rug project - I love braided rugs and that color combo will look so rich. Glad about the internet change for you - we have a little receiver dish thing - not true satellite but more a wireless phone system for computers - local yokel thing.

Sandra said...

oh how I love braided rugs but are you sure you want those strips 4" wide? Your poor hands, woman, your poor hands!

Lili said...

Yay on the DSL. My Mother lives in Old Town and still doesn't have it on her street! Love braided rugs. Your first one is gorgeous. Looking forward to seeing this new one. ~Lili