Monday, May 21, 2018

Hanging in there...........

I finally decided to knit the 'Be Simple Variations' asymmetrical shawlette using the 12 Days of Christmas handspun. It will be interesting to see how it turns out as it goes from color to color. It will also be interesting to see how big it ends up. I knit this shawlette using fingering weight yarn but this is more worsted size knit on bigger needles. I'm hoping it turns out big enough or I'll be ripping it out and trying something else. I am knitting on this when I'm not totally exhausted in the evening.

I'm hanging in there with the house buying project although I'm overwhelmed at times......many times. If all goes well we will be signing papers on the new house this week. I finally finished going through the entire house as I refuse to box up and move things I haven't used since we moved to this house 15 years ago. I've started packing so the house shows better............as in packing the weaving and sewing/crafts rooms as the rest of the house shows just fine. We have some work to do on the deck which Sam has started. Not sure when we'll get this house listed but am hoping it's in the not too distant future as we don't want to have an extra house for very long.

I've heard interesting comments from those around me about our move. Friends are feeling bad for us because we're downsizing - huh??? The new house is only a tiny big smaller so I wouldn't call that downsizing, we are downsizing from acreage to a neighborhood and no one should feel bad for us over that - it's what we want to do, it's a choice, we don't have to move, we can stay right where we are but we are ready to take care of less and have more time for the things that are important to us like weaving, spinning, quilting, sewing, beading, knitting, golfing, fishing, walking on the beach, etc, etc, etc.....   So dear friends, if you read this, please stop making those comments as it's starting to get on my nerves. Other than having to go through all the pains of buying and selling, which seem to be much worse this time than ever before, we're very happy...........we're both thinking about now that we don't ever want to move again but who knows what the future holds......


Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Finally.........shawls blocked

I took time early one morning last week to block a couple shawls so I could pack them away. It's not my favorite thing to do but I thoroughly enjoyed taking a break from house buying duties and getting the current house ready to put on the market. I love the way both of these turned out.


This is the Pretty Basic shawl pattern (Janina Kallio) knit from some beautiful hand-dyed fingering weight yarn a friend gifted me - I can wear this with so many colors - I love it. What I love about this shawl pattern is that I can knit it as long as my yarn will go, this one was knit several inches longer than the pattern calls for.


This is the Be Simple Variations asymmetrical shawl/scarf pattern (Carolyn Glauz-Todrank). I knit it in hand-dyed gradation fingering weight yarn, I think from Brambleberry Yarns but don't hold me to that, I can't find the label. I wasn't sure if I was going to like these colors but I love them.

Now back to cleaning windows and packing up coned yarns and knitting yarns in my studio so those rooms look bigger for showing of the house - one can barely walk in those  two rooms because of shelves and shelves of fiber. If I were looking at a house I could look past that, or get totally engrossed in seeing what was on the shelves, but most buyers would rather see an uncluttered room.

Hoping before the end of June I'll be weaving away again in my new space.........




Saturday, May 12, 2018

Beach time out.........

Last weekend we had a beach getaway planned with friends who would be camping over there. We knew we really needed the getaway so in spite of so much to do here at home we headed west to the coast. We were celebrating Kathy's birthday over the weekend and one of the important parts of it was watching the labyrinth being drawn and walking it - it was World Labyrinth Day. Denny Dyke regularly draws them on the beach in Bandon along with his crew of rakers - Circles in the Sand


We're standing up above on the cliff watching the drawing - here it is in one direction......


.....here looking the other direction. It's huge, as usual.


One of the drawings within the labyrinth we pass by as we're walking.....


....a great sentiment - "We all belong to each other".......


.....folks walking the labyrinth, even horseback riders came to see although it would probably be frowned upon if horses walked it.....although I'm sure they could as the tide started coming in and others were done walking. There was one dog walking it but he got frightened so he had to be picked up and carried off.......and he wasn't a tiny dog to pick up.......not sure what spooked him.......


......ying yang we passed by......








Life is a labyrinth
and we are all wandering
searching for ourselves


Coming down the home stretch......


At the end a place to write our names. There's ours in the heart.......


.....and Bill wrote this for Kathy


After our walk we went down the beach a little ways to have an incredible picnic lunch I put together - it was a lovely day on the coast. Off in the distance you can see people still walking the labyrinth. It was a perfect weekend - life is good......



Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Overwhelmed..........

I'm overwhelmed at the moment, so much so I couldn't even find a suitable photo to go with this post. You see, we've been thinking about moving for the past year but hadn't really committed until recently. It's time for us to get off acreage and move into a neighborhood. We're at the point where we don't want to worry about dead trees, fallen trees, ice & snow on our steep 1/3 mile driveway, etc. Oh, and there's the fire danger I will not miss, we have no escape route here if a forest fire starts close by and we're on a hill surrounded on both sides by ravines. There's no where in our region that's totally safe from fires but it will be better at the new house. It's going to be sad to leave this home we've had for the past 15 years but we're ready for a new adventure. We will miss our extra large covered deck and the privacy acreage provides........and we will miss our neighbors but we're not going but 13 miles closer to town so we can still see them.


We have found a house and are moving forward with buying it. We have not listed our current house yet as we want to make sure the purchase on the new one goes through.............and we have to spruce it up.............as in clean it out. Our current house has tremendous storage, so much so that we just kept filling it up without moving anything old out. This is where the overwhelming part comes in - we're cleaning out closets and storage rooms and right now that job looks like it will never end. I have found that I need to go on several diets - a knitting yarn diet, a fabric diet, a bead diet, a roving diet, a craft supply diet, a shoe diet, a purse diet, kitchen stuff diet and I'm sure there are many other diets, including the normal diet to lose weight.  And there's the weaving yarns but there are 3 things exempt from that diet - tencel, silk and cottolin as I go through those at a fairly quick pace...........although there's no weaving going on at the moment.


I still have stock of roving to sell in one of my etsy shops - it's all 20% off thru May 26th and I'll most probably extend the sale beyond then. I really don't want to move it and I'd like to use those bins in packing up the house. I have been trying to move the remainder of the roving as I'm not going to be selling it any longer once my stock is gone. So if you need Ashland Bay roving check out my shop HERE


Now off to figure out which closet to tackle next..........







Monday, April 16, 2018

Back to journal making

The watercolor paper needed to finish up leather journals finally arrived.........via slowboat..........but I guess that's what one gets with a free shipping offer so I can't really complain.
 I got all the paper cut for the remaining 12 journals I want to make. Six of them still needed end papers so I decided to do some stenciling.


Here are the 6 end papers that need to sit for a while, the Shiva Paintstiks need to cure. The end papers get folded over the 'books' of watercolor pages so the design on the right of each paper is in the front of the journal, design(s) on the left are the back page in the journal. Each of these goes perfectly with the leather colors and buttons chosen.

I also got 2 journals put together, both of those I used some of my paste paper for the end papers.....forgot to take a picture of those.



Monday, April 9, 2018

I couldn't resist.........

 While on the coast we frequently go to second hand/antique shops. We pretty much furnished the cottage over there from them.  Why we still go I'm not sure since we have no room for any other pieces of furniture.........but we're hooked. So.........this machine was marked down to $65, I couldn't leave it there, it had to come home with me, if it hadn't been marked down I could have easily walked on by.  Does it work? I have no clue yet, that's not the point, the point is I love to look at it.
This one has a cabinet that goes over top the machine rather than it folding down. It's so pretty.  Now where will it live??? I have no clue. There is no room in the beach cottage..........and here at home I've got one without the machine and it has a marble top, and I've got one with the machine, it's the type that folds down and has a cover. So......where will a 3rd machine live??? I have no clue yet. We didn't have room to bring it all back here to the valley so we brought the machine and lid - next time over we'll bring the desk part. Bailey refused to let us put the back seat down in order to bring it all home, he was not sitting next to that 'thing' - he wanted 'his' back seat. So.........I've got some time to figure out where to put it.......



Friday, March 30, 2018

Leather journals.......

In spite of being out of the studio too many days this week I did make some time for journal making. 
Here I'm auditioning a button - the final step in the making of a journal


Here they are - sorry no pictures of the insides with the lovely/creative end papers. I've got watercolor paper cut to make 6 more, then I've got leather cut for 12 more but I made a math error when ordering paper and don't have enough so more is on the way from Dick Blick. Many of these will end up for sale in my etsy shop in the not too distant future.


"Who you looking at?"  Bailey's bed behind me when I sit at the computer - he can sleep like he was doing here, before I rudely woke him up, or he can lay his head on the window sill and watch the forest critters.


Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Journal making

My life doesn't seem my own these days which results in very little time weaving. Lo and behold I had the entire day at home yesterday and I could have woven on that 3 scarf silk warp that's been sitting on a loom for weeks. But I just couldn't get into it. I couldn't sew because my Bernina is in for maintenance. I looked at the pile (on the floor, for months) of already cut leather, big folder filled with watercolor paper waiting to be cut into journal pages and fun papers for end covers for the journals. I thought - I'll start working on making all those journals, then I can get that pile off the floor and into a nice box of finished journals. Of course, this will take a while because I have a lot of supplies but it sounds like a fun activity for right now.
Here are some leathers paired with my homemade paste paper that will be coordinating end papers. The paste paper is so fun and I'm so glad to have a good use for it.....you see, I made it many years ago with my dear friend Janette when we had a paste paper play day. Janette lost her very long battle with cancer back in 2011 - I thought about her all afternoon while planning out which paste papers will go with which leathers.

Some black leather will get paste paper end covers, others will get Asian paper that I'll use spray adhesive to adhere them to watercolor paper so they have some heft.

These leather covers will all get Asian paper as end covers.

So, this is the paper picked out for 15 different journals. Then there are at least as many pieces of leather cut out for more journals but I have no more end paper so those I'll do what I've done on past journals, either watercolor paint the end papers or stencil them. I'll concentrate on those after I've made all of these journals.  Yesterday I did get 2 journals made and paper cut for several more......but a friend came over to buy some roving so we spent time visiting instead of me working on journals......time well spent visiting with a dear friend.  Eventually journals will show up in my etsy shop......but they need to be created and then comes the dreaded photography.........

Excitement here is a bear opening the bird seed pail and eating seed one evening, next evening he tried to carry the pail off but heard Sam open the front door so he dropped it. Then overnight he decided to pull down our very high steel cable holding bird feeders between trees - one feeder is missing. I want to put the pail out this evening so we can see it, Sam doesn't want to lose the pail.....


Wednesday, March 21, 2018

R & R

This past Friday we decided we needed some R & R. Life has been too busy lately and we have not gotten over to the coast much the past 3 months due to snowy road conditions on the passes or commitments connected to daily life. We pretty much did nothing other than walk, sleep, nap and eat out..........did us both a world of good.


These pictures were from up on the bluff where we were walking Bailey - it was a picture perfect day, high 50's, blue sky, only a bit of wind. Here's looking to the left down the beach.......


.....here's looking straight ahead......


.....here's looking up the beach to the north.


The quilt top I pieced and then had a long arm quilter do the quilting for me is finally on the bed. I got the binding on recently. We don't have much on the walls in our bedroom at the beach cottage yet and I can see that something is desperately needed over the bed. I'm considering making a wreath with shells and sea glass..........will give it thought, I never rush into decorating decisions.....


And in closing we watched a labyrinth being drawn in the late afternoon of the sunny morning, the clouds were moving in but no rain so the drawing went off as scheduled.  It was pretty windy and chilly by afternoon so we didn't stand out on the bluff too long too watch. Check out the Circles in the Sand website to see some of Denny's other labyrinths.


Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Pancakes done!

 I finished my pancake afghan quilt. It was sewn from gingko fabrics I've collected. I used what I thought might go together that would also go in our living room. I had varying amounts of the different fabrics so went with what was in my stash. I do have an entire shelf of gingko fabrics left but they are in other colors like pinks, blues, purples.........not sure what they'll eventually grow up to be.


Here's the backside. It's chilly today so this evening I'll be snuggling under this while we watch Heartland on Netflix. I've started another quilting project in the works but it's for a gift so I won't show it for a while.



Monday, March 5, 2018

Pancake quilt..........

I've started sewing the pancakes together for my afghan quilt.....2 rows so far.....9 more to go...

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Pancakes.....

 I finally decided to start making the pancake/circle afghan quilt for myself. Here are 77 circles awaiting an X to be quilted in the center of them before starting to join them together. That was 77 circles of a top fabric, back fabric and batting cut, sandwiched, sewn and turned. Sounds daunting but it really wasn't too bad. These are from my gingko fabric stash. The backside of these circles are either all black or black mixed with other colors,,,,gingko fabric, of course. Not sure how it will all look when put together but I'll love cuddling under it regardless. I would have preferred to have all light colors for the top side but I didn't have anymore yardage and I couldn't find more so the pale rust color got added into the mix. I've got all but one stack quilted with an X now, I've run out of steam sitting at the sewing machine to finish the rest..........plus I finally finished listening to Drums of Autumn, book 4 in the Outlander series so it seemed like a good time to stop.


This was what it looked like yesterday in-between snowfalls. The sun came out and melted it all off the trees although not off the ground. This morning we awoke to a fresh dusting but once again the sun has been out and has melted most of it.


Sunday, February 25, 2018

Bits & bobs.......

 Finally the quilt top I started a couple years ago made it to a long arm quilter in January - don't ask me why it took me so long to get it to someone. I took it to Sew Cute Quilting & Fabric Boutique in Dillard, OR - we pass it on our way to and from the coast. If it hadn't been that convenient it may still be sitting in the basket with the backing and batting.  This morning I got the binding sewn on - I love these little clips - so much easier than using pins on something like this.
 My mitered edges turned out great - I cut the corners  off the quilt so it wouldn't get stepped on as we walk around the bed. Here the binding is turned to the back ready for the final hand-stitching. Yes, I could stitch in the ditch and catch the backside of the binding but I really like not seeing that machine stitching in the binding. Once it makes it onto the bed at the beach cottage I'll take a photo again. It's hard to see in the pictures but the quilting is a sealife design with shells, sand dollars, starfish and kelp.
 I spent some time sewing yesterday making some snap bags. The tops have metal measuring tape inside the casings so the tops can be pulled out and snap back closed. These three go with a tote bag I made a couple years ago. I also made 4 more small ones in various stages of construction. I'll be leading our neighborhood American Sewing Guild group in how to make them later in March. I took photos along the way so I can give each person written directions too.
This painted silk warp went on the loom the other day but other than auditioning wefts I haven't gotten back to it. This is a dye job gone awry. I mixed that purple dye with varying amounts of gold dye hoping to get more of an ombre feel but it didn't come out as expected. So, after sitting for 2 years on the shelf I decided to just put it on the loom and get it woven. I've got enough for 3 scarves - I'll vary some wefts and also vary treadlings. I'm hoping once woven I'll like them better than I am right now........I could easily take that purple out of the warp, not sure I want to do that though.


Wednesday, February 14, 2018

More weaving - whoo hoo!

It's been a great 4 days - other than running orders to the post office I have spent 4 days at home weaving. This makes me so happy, it's where I want to be, nesting at home, nesting in my studio.
This morning I tied on another painted warp and auditioned wefts. I decided to go with, from the top, the forest green and the deep red/rust just below it. The first scarf was the deep red/rust weft woven using the treadling that creates the above pattern............of course, I forgot to take a photo of it.

Here is the scarf using the forest green as weft and a change in treadling. I decided to see what would happen if I wove 2 repeats of the treadling and then reversed it for 2 repeats and kept repeating that - I liked it. I'm actually thinking I may like this for a towel warp. This scarf is much prettier in person, it's kind of washed out in the photo.

Although I have another painted warp to go on the loom it won't happen until sometime next week - life is interfering and I won't get much time in the studio, maybe a little here and there so I can get the warp on but probably no weaving.  It was great while it lasted..........

 💘💘💘  Happy Valentine's Day  💘💘💘



Tuesday, February 13, 2018

I'm on a roll............

I'm on a roll with these painted warps. Although I'm not excited with the autumn colored ones I'm going to knock them out. These 5 painted warps have been sitting on the shelf for too long so it's time to get them woven..........then I won't feel guilty when the weather warms up and I want to paint more warps!
Here's the second scarf on yesterday's warp - got it woven off this morning


And this afternoon this painted warp went on the loom. I'm ready to start auditioning wefts for the 2 scarves on this warp - so far I've got 5 colors to try. This warp is tencel like the one above.

Next painted warps up are a silk one in golds/purple and another tencel one in autumn colors. I'm taking advantage of time I'm getting in the studio this week - it used to be the norm but life seems to have gotten in the way the past couple of years. And with this time in the studio I decided it was time to start listening to an audio book, #4 in the Outlander series, Drums of Autumn - there are 38 discs - I've listened to 7 so far.



Monday, February 12, 2018

Another painted warp

Another painted warp on the loom....this one tencel....2 scarves worth.....first scarf woven


Friday, February 9, 2018

Finally weaving.........

 I finally got some time at the loom to weave this 3 scarf warp off. I painted/dyed the warp months and months ago, it's a cotton/rayon blend. I used tencel for the weft in all 3 scarves. These are a bit thicker/heavier than I usually weave scarves but I'm sure they'll be lovely once washed. Above a rust weft.
 Here's a tan weft

Here's a mauvey/rust weft


Saturday, February 3, 2018

Finally.......something on the loom......

 It's been a while but this afternoon I put a painted warp on the loom. This one a cotton/rayon blend. Here I've got it wound on the back beam. I've got 4 or 5 painted warps in the studio that have sat neglected for a couple years - not sure why other than the fact that they all seem to be autumn colors and I haven't been in the mood to weave those colors.


Threading the heddles

Auditioning wefts, not the green at the bottom, that was just waste yarn to spread out the warp. Will think on this a bit longer before deciding which 3 I'll use, or maybe just 2 of them making 2 of the 3 scarves the same.......don't have to decide that tonight.