Friday, October 28, 2016

To blog or not to blog......

Or all good things must come to an end.........maybe. I've been rethinking so many things in life this past year - I need to simplify, I need to de-clutter....and most of all I need to free up more time for creating.

I'm pondering giving up blogging. I started out on this adventure over 8 years ago with the intention of promoting my etsy shops but it's turned out that my main audience are other weavers. I have met some great fiber artists over the internet throughout this 8+ years so it's been a good thing. Has it promoted my shops, probably not much, if at all.

How do other fiber artists keep up with online shops, blogging, tweeting, instagram, facebook, pinterest, not to mention online communities???  I can't seem to accomplish everything I want to and I've only got 2 etsy shops and a blog. Although it would be great networking I steer clear of the rest of it because they're time suckers (in my opinion). I'm sure younger people would think I'm some old woman who doesn't want to learn - well, that's not it, I am fully capable but I'm choosing to create rather than be consumed by being in front of monitor, tablet and phone screens all my waking hours. I want to weave, spin, knit, crochet, sew, bead, etc. etc. etc. I've had things on my very long to-do list for years - they're things I want to do (not the to-do list of chores that I can easily ignore). I want to read more, I want to learn more. Life is finite - if I don't de-clutter and simplify I'll never get to these fun activities.

In my efforts to de-clutter and simplify I have been gifting or selling many art/craft supplies that I know I will never use. If I haven't used it in 10 years I'm not going to..........yes, 10 years is a long time to set the 'used' rule but art/craft items don't fit into the regular household 'used' rule of 1-2 years. So, don't be surprised if you see a giveaway on the blog.

So, I will slow down my posting, eventually I may not post at all........someday the blog may totally disappear. I have no clue at this point and don't have to decide that today.

New on the inkle loom - for those of you getting excited that I'm making inklings again - I told you all last year it was the last inkling after many years of creating them. This is for another project.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Birds drunk on basil seeds

 Sunday late afternoon and evening I noticed lots of little finches (I think they're finches) on my almost spent basil plants on the deck. I was able to grab a few pix through the window. They were out there munching away on basil seeds since I had let the plants go after making the last batches of pesto.
I would have never guessed they would have loved the basil seeds so much - I'll remember this next year.

We spent some days on the coast to relax and I taught a beginning drop spindle class on Saturday. Very nice group of gals - hope they went home to keep practicing and keep up with spinning. Not a craft learned in just a couple hours, takes much practice. I taught the class at The Wool Co in Bandon, OR. If you're ever on the Oregon coast stop in and say hi to Kelly.......and buy some knitting, spinning or felting supplies, we need to support the small local shops.

Getting a bit panicked about holiday gifts - need to sit down and make a list today of what I still need to create. I have a plan for our holiday cards but haven't put that warp on the AVL yet, so there's a plan but I have no clue how it will turn out so I need to get to this project soon. Today is prep work for a future day of gift making with a friend - can't say what kind of gifts, they're a secret.

If I can get to reading over the voter's pamphlet I'll also vote today - we've voted by mail here in Oregon for years - I love it. Easy choice for president.........hard to understand all the county and state measures and know close to nothing about many of the county and state officials that are running. Need to reread all info, once again, with hopes that I can figure some of this stuff out. And what's with many local positions that have only one person running, or a few with no one listed on the ballot at all - I'm thinking that's where I write in Bailey's name............I've done it before but never saw him on the news or in the newspaper as having received votes after the election is over...........

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

False damask weave structure

Peg asked if I'd share the draft for the False damask towels I'm weaving. I first saw this draft in Handwoven Design Collection 5 and have since seen it in several other publications. I did a similar threading repeat but totally changed the treadling repeats.

There are two blocks in threading and treadling, the A block and the B block. The fun of weaving blocks is that you can repeat each block as many times as you'd like in the threading and treadling. Pick up some graph paper and play with profile drafting to create your own design, or if you have weaving software you can use that.  I did use a floating selvedge on the towel project.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Weaving towels......

Today was the perfect day to wind a warp and start weaving on a new towel warp.......old pattern, false damask as someone has requested a custom order of blue towels, the rest will be holiday gifts. Why was the perfect day? We're on our 4th day of raining pitchforks and shovels. Oregon can get rain but it's usually not flooding rains, it's usually light rain. I've been loving it - Friday was the official end of fire season until sometime next June - whoo hoo.  Perfect weather to weave, knit and cook soups in the crockpot......lentil soup on the menu for this evening. Life is long as we don't lose power - the high winds predicted didn't materialize so we're safe so far from power outages and fallen trees on the acreage. A stream is running in the ravine along the side of the house, water rushing through the culvert part way down the drive.........Bailey is fascinated with all that rushing water and doesn't seem to care that we, as in me or Sam, get drenched out on these walks.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

This and that......

Yes, this is a terrible photo but I'm way too tired to walk down those steps to my studio space one more time today to get another one.  I went to the Hugo Ladies Quilt Show on Friday and bought raffle tickets - I won this 4 piece rolling sewing machine case. It has a long handle on it like a suitcase. I was so excited. I'm not quite sure how you fit a sewing machine in it and then get the 3 small cases back in but I'll worry about that if I ever need to take my machine to a workshop/class. I can see many uses for this when traveling, but mostly for workshop supplies or just to tote around my knitting, drop spindles and such for heading to the coast and back. This would even work great for an overnight bag.

Family visiting from MD and MT left yesterday morning heading north to Uncle Tony's, put the beach cottage back together yesterday before heading home, now working on putting this house back together. I did teach my two aunts how to ice dye, they each dyed 3 scarves while here. It was a very fun visit with everyone. I'm very anxious to get back to the loom - been away from it for too long. I've got some holiday gifts to make and our holiday cards - I must focus and get to work.........

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Phew.....finally a bit of weaving

I have been so busy lately but not being creative, just doing the mundane, and also getting ready for family from Maryland and Montana coming to visit.......who should be here within the hour.  I did get to sneak into the studio a bit earlier this week to get 2 of the 3 black chenille shawls woven.........I won't get back to that warp until after family leaves.

I was doing the happy dance in the wee hours last Saturday night - we had rain, a nice steady rain. And then again the next night and 2 days since then, just light rain here and there. It's now sunny again heading into the weekend which is great for Art Along the Rogue which is an outdoor chalk festival here in town. Also tomorrow starts the Hugo Ladies Quilt Show, much of it is also outside. It's still fire season here until we get more rain but this was a start.

To all those on the east coast I'm sending good thoughts your way with this hurricane barreling down on the area. We have family in Indian Harbour Beach not far from Cape Canaveral - s-i-l is already in Orlando at a conference, hoping b-i-l heeds the warning and heads inland, as of this morning we heard he was planning on sticking it out. They are on a barrier island and once that bridge is closed there will be no getting out. I also have family more to the west I'm hoping will be safe as she's not near the coast.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

The Lounge Singer

Tonight was date night, which was a community concert evening. Generally the concerts are phenomenal, as in I can't believe this entertainment has come to this small southern Oregon town. Over the years there have only been a couple that we really didn't enjoy. Tonight's was not the worst but it wasn't our favorite either.  During the entire show I was thinking back to a time, 41 years ago, when I dated the manager, if it could be called dating, and it was for a very short time as I was young and fickle, of W. Bell & Co, a catalog store with high end jewels and loose gems whose regular customers included many rich foreign dignitaries from the embassies in DC. I was a cashier on weekends and evenings as this was my still in college gig - it was a very fun place to work as a college student and had great side benefits since I was dating the man in charge. Yes, I'm not proud of it but I was young and I was having fun.......and free food and drinks ranked up there as a big score for a college student. But I digress - back to the community concert.  One song into the show and I was thinking back to that time when my manager would take me out for dinner and drinks after work to a local hotel's smoky dark lounge complete with a lounge singer. Yes, tonight's entertainment could have been sent back in time to that lounge..........maybe they were one of the groups performing 41 years ago in that hotel in Rockville. I liked many of the songs this evening but not sung by this 'lounge singer' - they all ended up sounding the same. So, I was dying to tell my husband that I considered this lounge music and the story of my hotel lounge days but there was no intermission - I started panicking, was the show going to go on for hours, it didn't seem as if it would ever end. But finally end it did and as soon as we walked out the door, well not quite that soon as the entertainment also comes out that door heading to the front lobby with hopes of selling their CD's, I couldn't stop talking about the 'lounge' singer...........funny thing was that he was thinking the exact same thing during the show.  Of course as I mentioned my lounge days being 41 years ago I stopped dead in my could that have happened 41 years ago, I only feel like I'm in my 40's now.......

So, here's the interesting thing. I was at that same hotel lounge 7 years later (I hadn't been there in at least 6 years) and so was my husband, although we hadn't yet met at that time. Only there were no lounge singers at that point, no smoky dark lounge - it was a rocking dance club by then. I went there often with a friend to listen to a band she knew and dance the night away (made for havoc having to be at work early in the morning). One particular night we were there celebrating my birthday and the band surprised me with a cake so I started passing out pieces to all the cute guys. Ah, but I didn't make it to the back of the room where my husband and his friend were sitting so they missed out. But when we met 6 weeks later at a different dance club he remembered that night and the cute young girl passing out birthday cake........who never made it back to their table. But I guess we were meant to meet when we did as we haven't been apart since...........and that must only have been a short time ago as I can't be possibly be that old.........