Felted, hand spun yarn!

I decided to try my hand at felting my handspun yarn. I read about it in one of the spinning books I have. Now that I have tried it, I really like it.

First, you spin the wool. The first time I tried it I just spun just a little bit and made it into a ball, which I then felted and unspun. After that I tried making full skeins and felting them. Below, you see a full skein that is ready for felting.

To felt a skein, you put it in hot water and full it, then take it out and with soap, you lather it up and agitate between your hands. I like to fold my skein so it doesn’t get too tangled and felt it as if it were a ball.

Below is a picture of the felted skein which has not yet been unspun.

After the first felting, the skein must be unspun by turning the spinning wheel backwards and gradually moving the yarn onto the spindle while untwisting it.

This creates a beautiful and interesting texture in the felted yarn. Then the yarn must be felted again to increase its strength. Below is a picture of the final product, after drying.

The more it is felted while twisted, the more defined and interesting the texture when finished.

Below is a picture of the three stages next to each other.

Below is a picture of the first little bit I felted and unspun. All of these examples are with Merino wool.

I’d love to hear from anyone who tries this or has tried it.

Opening up the wall.

Before:

After:

I just love being able to see outside all around me. I especially love being able to see into the horse’s corral and barn from my studio. Makes me want to sleep in my studio even more, LOL!

This time, when I made my cut outs, I left the siding on the outside of the walls. That way I won’t have to piece it back together later.

Once the windows and trim are on, I will put cement board siding over this older plywood siding.

Working on the exterior of the cottage art studio.

With a week of sunny days in front of us, I decided it would be best to work on the outside of the art studio. We had a few days of rain and now with a break in the weather I realize I had better take advantage of the dry.

I could have chosen to have new windows but I had collected these old charmers over the past two years and I just love them. They may not be as energy efficient but I can create a barrier if I need to, from the weather, with clear bubble wrap or plastic.

Much of the siding I have used was given to us through Freecycle. I have begun buying new siding now though.

Ceiling almost finished!

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Look how bright the double room is now with the sheet rock up and ready to finish trimming out and painting. John and Ryan and I spent the last two days working as much as possible to get the ceiling in place. There was a lot of prep work to be done: finishing the insulation, spraying some foam insulation into cracks and crevices all over the place, and making sure there were no screws or nails or dried foam in the way of the sheet rock being raised into place. I only missed one little screw which created a little bubble when I hung that piece of ceiling. I had to cut into the bubble and will patch it later.

This time we rented a sheet rock raising tool to help us lift the large heavy Gypsum boards into place. I appreciated having the tool around for lifting the boards, fitting, and cutting them. It rented for $39 a day at Home Depot. We ended up using it for a day and a half.

I was able to work for three hours at a time and then I would have to take a break and have a snack or meal. I’m pretty happy about how much energy I had today. I was dripping with sweat and I felt so dirty when work was through but I feel blissful and tired after my shower, having accomplished so much.

Finally finishing my cottage art studio ceiling.

The first piece of sheet rock is in place!

The insulation you see between the rafters is a stiff foam insulation about 4 inches thick. This came from a greyhound bus station. It was given to my sister Cheryl and I after she found it online. I think she requested insulation through Freecycle. This insulation was bound for the dump but we were able to collect and use it instead.

I am very excited to be working on the designated art studio area in the cottage finally. Once this art studio area is finished I can move all my art supplies out of my very cramped living room studio and into the cottage studio.

Moving my art studio will allow me to open my home back up for family gatherings and more comfortable entertaining of friends. .

I am looking forward to decorating my house for the holidays this year 🙂

Valerian Root: Pain Relief and Sleep Aid?

I think I stumbled onto something to help with the pain in may lower jaw from the Trigeminal Neuralgia.  I was watching a series on youtube about herbal medicine yesterday, and one of the episodes was on energy and sleep.  They suggested Valerian for sleep.  Take a little and add a little as you attempt to go to sleep.  I used a tincture by the manufactures “Simple Truth” which has alcohol as the preservative.  I had already taken my pain medicine but was still too uncomfortable to go to sleep so I took some valerian.  Waited 10 min.  Then some more.  Waited.  Then some more.  After taking about 4 droppers of the tincture I felt so relaxed I went to sleep.

The show said that Valerian only works for about 4 hours, and I woke up in the middle of the night.  The show suggested taking it again to get back to sleep.  After taking my pain meds again, I took about three droppers of the tincture and went back to sleep.

I woke this morning with less pain in my lower back tooth than I had felt in a few days.  That lower, back, right tooth has been giving me the worst pain lately, and I have had it checked by the dentist already.  I wondered if the Valerian Root tincture in my mouth helped relieve some of the pain.  I tried it this morning and it seems to help.  At the very least the Valerian relieves some of the tension in my jaw muscles and relaxes them.  And the back, lower, right tooth doesn’t have as sharp a pain when my top teeth touch it.

This is simply some results from my experiment today.  I would be interested in hearing from anyone else who has tried Valerian Root for pain relief.