Four Tapestries

What variety comes with these four tapestries by Carolann Madden of Houston! I love these still mounted on the looms. Carolann has used my looms for some time and I really do appreciate her sharing her very nice examples. I wonder what she might be doing with them? I’ve had several customers in the past leave their finest work ON THE LOOM and display them that way. But, I’m certain these looms will continue to produce many more special pieces.

The Tiny Turned Beater is San Antonio, Texas Mesquite that came from a tree over 500 years old!  A few streets from where Cat and I lived there had a huge Mesquite tree that was leaning over her very old garage.  She asked a Texas A&M staff member to help save the tree.  He looked it over and responded that the tree was dead!  So, the lady, in her mid-90’s, having been born in the house, had the tree removed and stored in the old garage.  She interviewed woodworkers to ensure they would use the wood for projects rather than putting it in their BBQ grill to smoke meats…  I was so fortunate to be the first and was able to acquire most of the pieces.  Home I milled one piece and made an exceptional notion box for her.  When the finish cured I took it to her as an offer of appreciation for saving the wood from that tree.  She cried.  I feel so wonderfully blessed to have such an intense connection with special woods like that 500 year old Mesquite and still have a few chunks of the trunk that are totally viable.  I feel so blessed much moreso to have had such a connection with that very refined lady.

There are two projects using a Bird’s Eye Maple loom.  The loom with a very dark end is Afzelia – like the rest of the loom.  Several years ago I purchased a large quantity of that remarkable wood from the estate of a passed old woodworker.  There had been a fire in the warehouse years before which caused the very dark coloring on one side.  I thought that the planks partially burned were simply exceptional – making the wood throughout much more rich reddish brown.  Now, I have only a small amount of the wood left and am “rat holeing” it for personal use sometime.  I occasionally purchase exceptional examples of fine woods because they are beautiful, not having any particular project in mind.  Some other woods I have in that category include:  a chunk of actual Lignum Vitae about 12″ x 12″ x 36″ – must weigh 150#; Gabon Ebony 2″ x 12″ x 84″ – deepest purest black and largest piece of this Ebony I’ve even seen in my life; block of Afzelia Burl about 8″ x 8″ x 10″; and, a block of Amboyna Burl about 8″ x 8″ x 9″ – astounding burl features with eye p0pping deep coloring.  All of these will become very special pieces of functional art.

I LOVE what I do.



California Study

Here are two photos of project studies from Lisa Spayde in California. They are not just like many but I sure do find them interesting.  Combining yarns like this  shows real creativity and fun is the rule. Thanks to Lisa for sharing!

Bob’s First Lucet!

Here is another example of projects that friends and customers make. This is the very first attempt at Bob Gray in North Carolina at a new lucet of mine! The project is using hemp rope. I think that it’s marvelous and I’m really proud of Bob’s work. Kat Gray is giving him encouragement.
Been under the weather again, or still almost. I wish that it would either be Winter and snow 4 feet or go on to Spring and stay there….. This fluctuation is giving my system fits.
Later, Jim

Dee’s Samples

Dee Jochen sent me a photo of some of her samples using my looms. Isn’t this nice! Thanks to her for sharing.
Cold at night and lately warmer days. I can stand this, even the cold for Cat refers to me as the “Polar Cat”…. Now, if we could just get some moisture – it’s been months. Our younger son, Eric, from San Antonio is visiting for a few days. Nice to have company – gives me excuses to cook more. Well, I do that anyway as we eat whether visitors are here or not.
Looking for good test results in the next week……………. Answers, at least. It’s been a tough row the past two years.
The new garage for the ’41 is almost done! Just trim on the door and gravel to finish the ramp. Wish I were able to do such building as I have done a lot before…
Happy New Year, too!

License Plates

One thing that I really enjoy is collecting license plates to display in two places. One is the current garage where the Corvette lives along with metal advertising signs related to motor vehicles and related businesses. When the new garage for the 1941 Ford is completed I’ll move those that are Ford related. The other site to display license plates is the Bike House where Cat’s Harley trike and my custom Chopper live. I display motorcycle license plates there with metal advertising signs related to motorcycles and related businesses. It is great fun – some of the license plates go back to near 1900.
I’d like to offer to trade one of my Bird’s Eye Maple loom kits for a motorcycle license plate from where you live! I don’t need or have room to display an unlimited number, but if you have one and are willing to mail it to me, email me and we’ll work out the details.
We have not been able to ride for awhile having been sick for so long, and now so cold. We have electrically heated gloves for very cold weather, and Cat is about to have a heated vest as well. She’s a bit more sensitive while she refers to me as “The Polar Cat”. Fits as a former student of hers in San Antonio started calling me “Mr. Cat”. Still, some of those do not know my actual name……
Great joy and happiness to everyone!


Take a bite of this and chew on it:

The Left Wing and Right Wing are on the same bird. The bird cannot fly unless both wings work together……………………………….

I fear for the future of America unless our wings can learn to fly together again.  I am so ashamed that one of our wings is so very badly broken.  We gotta fix this or the bird will not fly again.


New Sample Example!

Here is another sample of a customer’s weaving. Such a very pretty example of individual effort. Thanks to Anne of Flax and Twine!
On a personal note I’m still recovering from a very severe case of the flu. Sickest I’ve been in my 71 years. Would not recommend it as a course to lose 20# in just a few days……. Hoping to register the 1941 Ford truck tomorrow. I’ve still not been well enough to drive it YET!
Cheers, Jim