Tuesday, 29 October 2013


This weekend was the Maritime Hanspinners Retreat. So I spent most of saturday and sunday spinning.
There is only one hand in this picture because the other is holding the camera. When I'm actually spinning I use both hands, the right in front of the left.
I had to empty a couple of bobbins, which were full of pinkish purple yarn.
Making a skein out of the yarn I finished last year. You can see about 6 other spinning wheels in the background.
This is my spinning wheel. It's an Ashford Kiwi. I bought it in 2010 and got a pretty good deal because it wasn't finished or assembled.
I sanded the edges, stained and varnished it, and put it together. I masked out the kiwi on the pedal when I stained it. It is a good spinning wheel. It's a nice size for traveling and it's easy to use.
This is the kiwi 1. Sadly, the kiwi 2 doesn't have a kiwi on the pedal.
I got it autographed at the 2011 retreat, when Richard Ashford came over from New Zealand.

Here is some yarn I have spun.
The pinkish purple stuff I had to skein off this weekend.

The purple yarn I finished spinning and plying this weekend.

Some really fine pale green silk and merino I finished at year.
This weekend, after finishing the purple yarn, I started working on some black merino.
I also have some other unfinished yarn.
A thicker yarn that I'm spinning out of mohair locks.

A very thin yarn in a silk and merino blend.
Wow, even with lots of different yarns, spinning doesn't make much of a post. There are some more interesting pictures from this weekend, but they are on other people's camera's. I don't think there is enough writing in this post, but I'm not sure what else to write. I would probably have an easier time thinking if I weren't sick with a cold.
I promise that the next post will be about sewing!

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Edwardian photo album #1 part 2

I'm terribly sorry about this. It was not my intention to do two album posts in a row, but there is no sewing post ready, so here is part 2 of the album I introduced last week.
People in a boat. I wonder why that lady is covering her face.
More farm things.

Are those black cows? I don't think I've ever seen an entirely black cow.

Whoever put her hair up did a great job. I like the buttons on her collar too.
A group picture in front of a school house, how cute!
Now that is a very interesting bodice closure. So futuristic looking.

What is that thing on his head? It looks like he ripped a clump of sod out of the lawn and used it as a hat. Very odd.
This picture, and the one after it, have words stuck to them. I don't know how this could have happened. They look like they are from a newspaper, but there wasn't anything in between these pages.

I'm sure this scenery was very pretty in person, but why take a tiny black and white photograph of it? It makes it look so boring. A painting would be a far better option.
If you insist on taking tiny colourless photos of landscapes, including a couple of ladies with big hats does improve things.
What wonderful trim! And a rather unusual hairstyle. I don't think I've ever seen one like that before.

Such silly apron ruffles. I always think they look strange when I see them on costumes, so it's really interesting to see that they actually wore those things.

This one has a clothesline. My commentary is utterly useless but I think there ought to be text in between at least some of the pictures.
This looks like some kind of uniform. Can anyone tell me what is going on in this picture?
Lots of people are waiting for something to arrive.
Elsie Thom Presque-something Glass? I can't quite make out the writing, but the contents of the box are clearly delightful.
I see three buttons on a skirt. I wonder if they are part of a longer row of buttons or if there are only three.

This is strange. It's the delightful box arrival location again, but what's the little blurry object? And why does it need two people to hold it up?

I missed the HSF Green challenge because my pockets still aren't done. I have made a lot of progress on them, but they are only a little over half finished. I also started a pair of mitts for the Outerwear challenge, but they aren't quite finished either. I'm hoping to finish my green bodice for the Masquerade challenge, or at least get the panels sewn together. I am busy with school assignments though, besides being easily distracted by other projects, so this is all rather uncertain.

Monday, 14 October 2013

Edwardian Photo Album #1 Part 1

It's time to look at more old pictures!
These are from one of the photo albums I found in my Grandparent's attic. The covers are made from a thin black cardboard stamped with a crocodile scale pattern. The pages are a very heavy black paper. The album is 25.5 cm wide, 18.3 cm tall and a little over 1 cm thick. The contents range from the 1900s to the early 20's. (Yes, I know that makes a lot of them technically not Edwardian.) There are 96 photographs in total, so I'll be posting them in 3 installments of 32.
To keep the photographs in order, they are named by page number, and by the order in which they appear on the page. Page 1 pic A, page 1 pic B, etc.

I do not know how or when this album was put together but it is the sloppiest album I have ever seen in my life! The edges of the pictures are trimmed unevenly. They are glued directly onto the pages without any concern for order. There are places where the photos overlap. Some of them are tilted a full 45 degrees. You can see where a few of the photos have been torn out. It's just a mess.
Worst of all, almost none of them have information written on them.
I've tried to crop them as neatly as I can, so please excuse the very ragged edges.

This was tucked in between the cover and the first page. (click any of these for a larger view.)
Bert Ackerson's report card from June, 1901. You can tell the card itself was printed in the 1890s.
Bert got excellent marks! No wonder they kept his report card for so long.
There is a Bert A. Ackerson in our family tree, on my father's father's side. He was born in 1888, so he would have been 13 in 1901.

It's likely that most of these these photos came from Lindsay, New Brunswick, Canada. My Grandfather grew up on a farm there and these could be pictures of the same farm.
Some of them look like studio portraits, but most of them are not. They range wildly in size and quality.

That's enough introduction. Let's have a look at early 20th century rural life in the Maritimes!
Here is an unnamed guy in a hat. This is one of the smaller pictures that look more like studio portraits. It looks like his coat has a velvet collar, and some of the pile has worn off.
A little boy and a big, fluffy dog. That's a really, really big, empty field. I can't even see any trees on the horizon.
This looks like the same boy and dog, but the hat is different, and the pose much less formal. We have a washtub that looks a lot like the one in this picture. I don't think it's nearly that old though.
Another one of the little studio portraits.
A pram! And what a fancy looking pillow. Does anyone know what that tower thing might be?
Two blurry ladies and three blurry gentlemen. Lots of blurry leaves too.
This lady and her horse both look like they lead very hard working lives. Her clothes are simple and practical.
Two angles of the same girl and her poofy hat.
That's a bit of an odd pose. It makes it look like the back of his head was itchy.
Another weird panoramic picture showing two views of the same kid. Someone's hands are trying to keep the baby still, and in the first picture they are actually succeeding.

Another picture of a guy with his hand on the left side of his head.
And another! That's three portraits in a row of men in the same strange pose. Why?
A waterfall and a river.
It seems that even a hundred years ago, people were taking pictures of pretty scenery, even though there was no way the photographs could do it justice.
Cooking outdoors in fancy hats!
This is the same pair of ladies in the same outfits if I'm not mistaken.
The blurriness makes that baby look very creepy.
This baby isn't creepy, though it is still blurry.
More happy, blurry people. I really like the trim on the blouse in the middle.
And a larger group portrait, why are so many of these pictures so blurry?

That is a huge coat!

What a moustache! And such tiny little glasses.
Such a cheerful looking old couple. If they are a couple. I don't actually see any wedding rings.
This picture, and the next three, appear to be in a different setting. It might be the same place the waterfall and river pictures were taken.

Her pale, matching gingham jacket and skirt remind me of a fashion photograph from 1902 that I saw on page 188 of waisted efforts. The jacket in that picture had a less practical cut, a fancier hat, and fewer, more artfully placed buttons, but the overall effect was similar. This outfit looks just like a lower class version of that one.
Update: Here! The one on the left.
Illustrations from La Mode, Paris 1902. Scanned from Waisted Efforts.
 It's a whole different level of fanciness, but still quite similar.
Another photo showing a large amount of scenery and a small amount of cute child.

And that concludes part 1 of this album. I didn't watermark the pictures this time because they don't have nice wide frames like the Victorian ones, and therefore watermarks would be too distracting. You may use these pictures if you wish, as long as you leave a link back to the source.

As always, any additional information you may have is most welcome.