Sunday, June 29, 2008

Everything old is new again

In excavating my workroom, I came across a bunch of my old patterns. I designed this lovely shrug back in January 2005 and have been teaching classes on it in many shops since then. Also, in 2005, I had kits and patterns of this shrug design at the Los Angeles County Fair. I even sold a few finished ones to ladies who could not live without it! In 2006, this lacy version of the shrug was featured in the L.A. County Fair Fashion Show modeled by the lovely Myra Wood and was very well received by an appreciative audience. In fact, Myra liked so much she ended up buying it from me. I love it when something finds a good home!

Recently, I have been converting a lot of my old patterns into PDF files with new photos. I thought this would be a great candidate as it lends itself to many different looks depending on the yarn choices made. I have other versions packed away in boxes in my workroom and when I dig them out I will post them for comparison. Also, when I originally wrote this I did several versions for the knitter, the crocheter and the bi-craftual person who knits and crochets! They all look wonderful. Currently, I have uploaded this pattern for sale on ravelry and also in my Etsy shop. It is a quick and easy knit and/or crochet. Bet you can't make just one!

Ruffles are still fascinating me for some reason and this current incarnation of my neckwarmer/capelet came out nicely. The color is off a bit in the photo so I think I need to take a picture outside. It is actually a gorgeous deep royal purple with touches of black in the ruffling. Socks have somehow magically appeared on my needles and are in progress. I really want to get my friend Janel Laidman's new book called The Eclectic Sock as she is an amazing designer.

Well, I should be signing off as I need to finish getting supper together for the husband. He gets a little grumpy when he isn't fed on a regular basis.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

OMG, I thought BSG was next week!

Talk about a senior moment - I have been preparing to go to Black Sheep Gathering in Oregon for the past several weeks, getting the house ready, the chores done and figuring out what to pack and how the spinning wheels were going to ride in the back seat(with seat belts, of course.)  I have been looking forward to hanging out with some friends and laughing, spinning and enjoying all the fibery goodness that is BSG as well as enjoying the beautiful coastline of California and the delights of the Oregon landscape.  As of this morning, I realized that I have run into a slight snag, BSG was THIS weekend not NEXT weekend!  Duh!  Well, on a positive note, the house is clean and organized, the cat's world is all set for anything and I even cleaned out the science experiments in the fridge! 

So, here I sit trying to stay cool in the 108 degree heat in Hemet, thank God for air conditioning!  To delude myself further into believing I am participating in a fiber event, I have been spinning yarn like a maniac!  I have made lots of lovely two ply hand-painted yarns, some bulky art yarns and have been carding batts in preparation for more spinning.  Of course, the cat is the only one to talk with and he is not finding it all terribly exciting to say the least.
I have convinced the husband that he should cook this weekend because my brain must be incapable of complex thoughts in terms of menus, recipes, open flames (the stove) and it might be dangerous to put me in charge in the kitchen.  Since I mixed up the weekends, he agreed with me and took over the chef duties! (he,he, it worked!) So, I guess I will remain in my delusional state having misplaced a week and continue spinning.  It is too hot to do any dyeing right now but it sure would dry quickly!

There are a few skeins of handspun posted just to prove that I have accomplished something besides housecleaning and other mundane chores.  Maybe next year I will get the dates straight - I may need outside help though!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

I've been memed!

My lovely friend Kyle has memed me and since he asked me to play nice, I am going to give this a whirl! Here goes:

What was I doing ten years ago?
At that time, I had a very busy millinery business, creating and selling hats for women and girls in the US and overseas to high-end stores and boutiques. I also did quite a few arts and crafts shows selling my hats, flowers and other creations.

Five Snacks:
Plain yogurt with fresh fruit
Salsa and guacamole with cottage cheese
Pad Thai (yes, I know it isn't a snack but I do love it!)

Five things on the to-do list today:
1. Not to make a to-do list (my mother was an endless list maker and I always hated it as a child - call it rebellion)
2. Make it through the day without losing my sanity.
3. Try to accomplish something, some days it is a lot and sometimes not.
4. Be kind to those I encounter.
5. Be grateful for every day of life granted.

Things I would do if I was a billionaire:
1. Help as many people as I could in meaningful ways so they can sustain themselves.
2. Travel.
3. Live in peace and serenity.
4. Move to the redwoods and live in a small craftsman home with a studio attached that I could play with fiber to my heart's content.
5. Learn.

Five jobs I've had:
1. ICU-CCU nurse.
2. Handspinner (supported a family of five about 30 years ago)
3. Medical transcriptionist.
4. Milliner.
5. Knitting, crochet designer and teacher.

Five bad Habits:
1. Not suffering fools gladly sometimes.
2. Perfectionist.
3. Not always trusting my instincts.
4. Not taking care of myself as well as I should.
5. Living in the past sometimes which a 97-year-old friend tells me has no future!

Five Places I have lived:
1. In the redwoods in Santa Cruz Mountains of California.
2. Falls Church, VA
3. Pasadena, California
4. Colorado Springs, Colorado
5. Sierra Madre, California

Five People I want to get to know better:
1. My son.
2. Kyle.
3. Larry (knitdad)
4. Lisa (pass the coffee)
5. those I haven't met yet.

Five Random Things:
1. I get totally absorbed in what I am working on and everything else doesn't exist.
2. Inside of this broken-down exterior, I am dancing as fast as I can!
3. No one knows how much I miss my son and long to have him back in my life.
4. A lot of times others judge me by what they see on the surface and don't realize what my life experiences have been or who I really am.
5. There is a very old anonymous Irish poem which I really identify with:
'Upon an airy upland, within me and far away,
A child that is ageless dances, all delicately gay,
A dance that is like sunshine, while I am old and grey."

Yikes, Kyle, you have made me ponder things I haven't thought about in a good little bit.


What a glorious day in Santa Monica! The sun was shining and a lovely seabreeze made the temperature just perfect for a craft show. This show is so wonderful, with amazing artists and craftspeople. A number of friends had booths in the show and so it was really fun seeing them. There were jewelers whose work was so incredible it would bring tears to your eyes, astounding stained glass pieces, sculptures of wood and other materials, leather bags to die for and divine clothing designers. This show never fails to fulfill all the fantasies of what a craft show should be! Superb! We brought my darling mother-in-law with us and she ended up purchasing a lovely handwoven jacket in a muted lavender color with lots of texture and looked so pretty in the color. Another nice thing about this show is that there are places to sit here and there so it gives visitors a place to rest and then check out more.

I am posting a few photos but since I couldn't take pics inside the show, I snapped a few outside from the parking lot. These will give you a small idea of the wonders and delights that were hidden inside. These metal sculptures always delight me as they are so whimsical and fun. Mom and I fell in love with the lady with the hair made of mixer beaters. I also took a photo of a glass booth outside. They were still setting up but the sunlight hit the glass and it was beautiful. If you ever get a chance to attend this show, do it, it is worth the trip!