Monday, December 24, 2012

Besom Making!

I went out today in the zero degree weather because I need a broom. Not just any broom, but a besom that I make myself from nature and love. I want to open the winter grove properly this year.
So, yesterday, I gathered willow switches. Our land is almost all willow, where it isn't marsh grasses, so finding young thin...dare I say, willowy...branches was easy. It also gave me an excuse to clear a better path to the Autumn grove.
I built up three good fires before I was finished binding them together with twine and handspun yarn. The yarn isn't strong enough on its own, so I had to resort to twine. After four bindings, I had to stop. My fingertips were chewed up and my feet were numb.
Last night, it snowed. Yay! A white Christmas is always a cause for celebration. Today, I gathered up two big boxes of wood and set out to make a fire once more. It was much colder this time around. I had to wait until late afternoon for the snow to stop. I managed to get two more bindings done before the fire and I gave out. I also got the handle whittled, burned, and inserted. I will need to do the bindings higher on the handle next time, and hopefully it won't be quite as cold out.
You can see from the above image (sorry for the crappy photo, but I was cold and tired by then) that I need to trim the end, shorten the handle, and decorate. I am really pleased with it so far, though! Not bad for a first try.
I also wanted to share that I finished the Ericales shawl. I hope I never have to knit this one again. I might not put it in the commission book, because it was tedious and not joyful. It is lovely, though, so we'll see.
I finished it surrounded by drunk people during our 12 hour train delay into Chicago. I had a woman give me $20 because she liked watching me knit...and she was drunk.
I have ideas that have been rolling around in my head for a month for the next shawl. I am feeling slightly burned out from this last one, so I may not start until after the holidays.
Blessed Yule, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays to you all.

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