A Little Fun

A Little Fun

Hi everyone!  I started a new business journal not long ago.  I find my bullet journal, note taking style of journaling to be helpful in keeping me on track with everything that needs to be done.

I worked on my website more. It’s been challenging.  The photos in particular.  I may have to pay someone to deal with those. Though I’d like to know how to do it myself. Eventually I’m going to have to. I also worked on entering new product.

I made a trip to the Visual Voice Gallery and back, to pick up a piece to ship to a private buyer. I shipped two pieces off to a private buyer.  In the end there were actually five pieces sold since the beginning of September, which I consider very good. I am quite pleased with that. Just a reminder folks – the “Offbeat” exhibit is up until September 24th!

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I had lots of inspiration trips this past week.

Thursday we were up in the Annapolis Valley area to Gaspereau Valley Farms. I took my spinning wheel for a going over by a lady there.  I found mohair locks, undyed, and purchased a pound.  I am going to have fun dyeing them!

Friday we were up to the Gallery in Truro.  Today we went to Lawrencetown Beach Provincial Park and I sat on the beach and painted for a couple of hours.  A beautiful day!

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I am back working on finishing the Parker’s Cove fishing shacks series.  It is proving more difficult than anticipated.  And more time consuming.  I think I finally found a way to do it that I like.

This week I will be busy attending a worldwide nature journaling conference.  That is another place I look for inspiration – nature.

If you have been, thanks for reading!  Have a great week everyone!

Labour Day Update

Labour Day Update

Hi everyone!  Just thought I’d pop in and let you know I am part of a group exhibit at Visual Voice Gallery in Truro, Nova Scotia right now. I was into the gallery to have a look around. The exhibit looks very nice. A few of my pieces have sold.  I’m looking forward to more sales in the future. The exhibit is up until September 24th, so if you are interested in a particular piece, you might want to contact the gallery owner soon.

A special thank-you goes out to the lady who runs the gallery.  Thank-you for the respect and care you give my work, and for listening to the stories it tells. Thank-you for taking the time to present it so eloquently to your clientele.

I am also busily working on my new Shopify website. Hopefully it will be ready to launch this fall.  I am having some challenges with images at the moment.  But I expect to have that dealt with soon.

Come November 14th to December 24th I will be taking part in the Christmas Show and Sale as well.  There will be wall hangings, ornaments, and seasonal notecards (that can be used as gift tags or greeting cards) available.

Well, that’s my news for now.  Have a great week everyone!

Summer Update

Summer Update

Hello everyone!  A lot has been happening here.

The “Summer” exhibit ended and I took more work up to Visual Voice Gallery for the next two group shows this year.  The Gallery now has a good cross section of my smaller works.  If you are interested in anything smaller than 12” x 12”, feel free to contact the gallery.  I have yet to update my website shop.  That will be happening this week.  It was a fun afternoon, chatting with the gallery owner and getting feedback on various pieces and from her and her clients.  If you are interested in my work, just call and ask.  If she doesn’t have it, I’ll have it here in my studio.

We also had company arrive and leave.  We were a pit stop on the way to see their parents. It was fun to meet their children.

We did have a lot of tree pruning and culling done. A crew of 4 or 5 guys came with chainsaws and a bucket truck with mulcher on back. It took them all morning to beat back the jungle.   There is a lot more sun on the garden now. I’m hoping to plant some understory shrubs below the mature oak, maples and poplars.

I’ve spent a lot of time in the garden too.  We’ve been harvesting peas, radishes, lettuce, beet greens and Swiss chard. I planted more peas and beans just last week. We’ll see how the peas do in the heat.  I planted them in a shade garden essentially, so maybe they’ll be alright.

Hubby helped me put down cardboard and wood chips (the mulch from the trees) between and around the raised bed garden.  We’ll see how it does for keeping down weeds.

Of course, to do all this work in the garden we had to remove the garden netting.  And, of course, as far as critters were concerned it was open season on the garden!  The deer have been browsing the beans.  The blue jays are after the snap peas.  The starlings are digging up my bean seeds.

A robin and flicker were out near or on the edge of the garden today.  I don’t know what they were up to, but they both looked awful guilty!  The robin hopped down from the edge of the raised bed and slunk away with the occasional furtive backward glance.  The flicker stayed so still a couple feet from the bed, hoping I wouldn’t notice him no doubt!

I just shook my head and smiled. It’s a good thing critters are so darn cute!  I may have to cover my beds again until the second planting of peas and beans sprouts.

Aside from that I’ve been working on my large Parker’s Cove piece, updating my inventory, transferring files from my iMac to laptop, and adjusting work for the gallery – new hangtags and new hanging systems.

I’ve been reading a lot of gardening and permaculture books, and watching YouTube videos on the subjects.  I’ve also been watching videos on harvesting and preserving produce and herbs.  We are having a bumper crop of herbs this year.

As most of you who follow me on Instagram know by now, I am no longer on that platform.  I cannot delete my business account apparently, but I have removed all my images save one. I can no longer access my personal account, so if you are someone I know in real life, and you are trying to get a hold of me through Instagram, I suggest you try my business page on Facebook, or send me a message through Messenger.  Otherwise email is best.

To be honest, I found the payback for being on social media to not be worth my time and effort. I will retain Facebook, for now, but I am even reconsidering it. All my information is on this website, as well as this blog. I prefer to spend my time creating, rather than on social media.

That’s it for this week!  If you made it this far, thanks for reading!  Have a great week everyone!

Review & Catch Up Week

Review & Catch Up Week

Good morning everyone!  I had a wonderful time at the Show & Sale with The Bonnie Hookers at Scott Manor House this past Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  I managed to share information on rug hooking, demonstrate and even sit someone at a frame to learn. The ladies I worked with were kind, friendly and generous.

I’ve yet to check in with Visual Voice Gallery to see how the “Summer”  exhibit went. I’ll touch base sometime this week.

I did manage to hook a lot on the big Parker’s Cove fishing shacks wall hanging. I may need to pause to dye more blues for the sky.  I also worked on finishing some Parker’s Cove pieces.

I’ve been busy in the garden.  I’m reorganizing my freezers in preparation for this year’s harvest.

This week will be a mix. We have various appointments and a property management crew coming to cut a few trees and prune others.  The trees surrounding our yard are large, producing too much shade, and possibly a hazard during a winter storm.  Now is the time to deal with them.

Well, that’s it for now. If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week everyone!

Summer Happenings

Summer Happenings

Good afternoon everyone!  It’s been a busy couple of weeks.  Hence the lack of blog post last week.   We had company the last while and we took the time to show them around the Maritimes.  It was our vacation, as well as theirs.

I did not accomplish much rug hooking, but I did manage a bit on my large Parker’s Cove fishing shacks piece. I need to refocus on finishing the edging on the earlier ones and hooking more of them.  I believe I counted 15 shacks in total.

In other news…

The show and sale at Scott Manor House in Bedford, Nova Scotia, starts Thursday at 1 PM and goes until Saturday at 4 PM. Friday we will have the doors open from 10 AM to 4 PM. There is, reportedly, an afternoon tea at the House on Friday as well. There will be a broad range of styles and prices at the show and sale.  If you’re in the area it would be a nice way to spend some time.  I understand Scott Manor House offers guided tours as well.

The exhibit at Village Voice Gallery in Truro is still on.  It ends July 16th. There will be another group show the end of August into September. I will be a part of that as well.

That’s it for my rug hooking news.

I have a lot of company and vacation time coming up.  Extended family and friends coming to visit.  We’ll be heading out sometime in August to connect up with family in New Brunswick.  Lots happening!  Gotta love summer!

My garden is a mixed bag.  Some of it is growing very well, some of it is so-so, and some is not doing well at all.  Still, I am harvesting lettuce, radish, beet greens and Swiss chard to make wonderful salads. Plus I’ve already harvested some basil, cilantro, thyme and parsley. Everything is going as well as can be expected in the garden department.

If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week!

Artist Retreat

Artist Retreat

Last week I had a lovely retreat, so to speak, with Hubby.  It was actually a working vacation for me.  We went up to Annapolis Royal, NS and rented a cottage in the area. The view out the front window was gorgeous!

We decided we didn’t want to cook while there, so I roasted a chicken and cut it up the day before we left.  I also made some hummus and vegetable  sticks for dipping. Plus we took the usual peanut butter and homemade jelly, and boiled eggs.  Plus fruit, bagels and bread.  We survived on that, oatmeal and two grocery store salads for the entire time we were there.

Well, except for our friends’ providing a BBQ supper and a picnic beach lunch!  I tell you…there is nothing better than eating fresh baked homemade bread sandwiches out on the rocks overlooking the ocean!

We were gone for three nights.  My friends are rug hookers too, so we had a great time hooking and finishing while I was there.

I also searched for a suitable gallery to show my Parker’s Cove fishing shack series in Annapolis Royal.  While there are a good many galleries there for the population, many have unfortunately closed since the beginning of Covid.

Those of you who follow me on Instagram will know I started hooking the large Parker’s Cove piece.  It’s 12” x 36”.  I am currently hooking the last of five fishing shacks. It will be a couple of weeks or more before I finish. We are expecting company.

I had a photographer in to photograph my work. It was a massive job!  He managed to photograph everything in about an hour.  We worked together to finish over 75 pieces during that time!  This is all the work I have in the house that was not previously photographed, excluding the Parker’s Cove series.  I’ll have that photographed when it’s finished.

Other than that, I’ve been enjoying Elizabeth Miller’s site – Parris House Creative Community – on Mighty Networks lately.  There was a lovely Zoom meeting in our gardens, showing each other our yards, but focusing on vegetable gardens.  Elizabeth has a huge garden!  Plus she’s into so many interesting things!  I loved the opportunity to see her space, even if only virtually.  I also took part in her monthly Crafternoon on Sunday.

My first group show with Visual Voice Gallery in Truro started Monday!  The theme is “Summer”.  Check it out, either in person or online!  You can find it online at: Visual Voice or visit 128 King Street, Truro, Nova Scotia.

I am currently busy preparing for a July show and sale at a local museum Stay tuned for more information!

If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week everyone!

 

Humming along…

Humming along…

I had a lovely afternoon last Monday up in Truro at the Visual Voice Gallery with the proprietress.  We went through my work, I described my process, and she decided which pieces she wanted to keep for various shows.  I also took my notecards on the off chance she might want some of those.  She did!

So now if anyone is looking for my work through a gallery in Nova Scotia, they can contact the gallery owner at: gallery@visual-voice.ca

The first show I’m a part of starts today at Visual Voice in Truro, Nova Scotia, Canada.  It’s a group show on the theme of “Summer”.

In other news…

The Visual Voice Gallery owner mentioned two other exhibits I could take part in this year, both group shows.  One is the end of August into September.  The August/September one is called “Offbeat”.  I plan on presenting her with some unusual pieces I’ve hooked over the years to see if anyone is interested in them

She also mentioned the Christmas sale, in which she tries to keep items under $100 CAD.  I have several items I could display in that sale as well. Then there are my Christmas notecards. So if you’re interested in acquiring or seeing my work in person, visit Visual Voice!

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I am organizing hooked pieces for a photography session later this month.   I finally went through the professional photos I’ve had taken in the past and noted them on my main inventory list. I need to be better at figuring out what needs to be photographed professionally and what’s already been done.  Next up is to take the pieces that need photos off the walls for the photographer.

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I am also preparing for an exhibit with The Bonnie Hookers July 14-16th at Scott Manor House in Bedford, Nova Scotia.  I will take a variety of work that is a variety of sizes. I will be there most of those days to help demonstrate rug hooking, answer questions and facilitate sales.  If you are a blog reader and show up at the sale, make yourself known to me and I’ll try to show you around the exhibit.

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I’m working on finishing some of the Parker’s Cove fishing shacks.  I’ve also started the biggest Parker’s Cove piece to date.  It is over 12” x 36” and will take awhile to hook. I’ll be working on it during my upcoming self-designed artist retreat.

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That’s it so far everyone!  If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week everyone!

 

 

Finishing Up

Finishing Up

Good morning everyone!  This week I finished hooking a couple more small Parker’s Cove fishing shack pieces. I am pausing to finish the ones I’ve hooked.  Then I’ll move on. I’m about at the halfway point with this series. I’m still enjoying them immensely. They are such cheerful buildings to hook.  I have hooked 14 pieces so far.

I also spent time sketching the remaining shacks.  Though I do believe I have a couple more to go.  I have the backing cut and prepared for transferring patterns.  Next up is to transfer them.

I arranged for a photographer to take photos of some of my hooked pieces in late June.  Hopefully that will include some of the Parker’s Cove series. I currently want photos of 50 pieces for my website and portfolio.

I have been busy updating my CV and resumé. Time slips away from me easily.  It’s been five years since I updated it. I also need to work on my artist statement.  Plus, it’s been a long time since I updated my portfolio.

Lots happening!  If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week everyone!

 

Monday, Monday…

Monday, Monday…

Good morning everyone!  This past week I have been busy hooking more Parker’s Cove fishing shacks.  I have a few colour questions to fine tune them.  My photos were taken late in the day and some of the shacks were in pretty deep shade.  I need to get back up there to confirm the colour choices I’ve made.

To that end I booked a four day artist retreat in the area for myself in June.  Hubby will go with me and spend time on his creative projects as well. I hope to be finishing the wall hangings by then, but we shall see.  There are a lot more to do!

Last week I also enjoyed the company of real live, in person rug hookers!  It sure is nice to feel comfortable getting together with other people again. We shared our work and hooked away.  The time passed very quickly, and I am looking forward to getting together again this week.

I am still working through “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron, with a group in the Parris House Creative Community on Mighty Networks.  I am finding the chapter I’m on is taking a long time to complete.  I am however, being jolted out of complacency, off my butt to get up and do something about my artistic career.

Two of the areas I am exploring are exhibiting and sales options.  I am teaming up with two other rug hookers.  We are all members of the same rug hooking group.  We are tentatively booked for a museum in July.  I am not convinced this will go ahead.  If not, we will hold an art show and sale in my backyard.  I am also checking out galleries for possible representation, though I am not very confident in this area, having had mixed results where we previously lived.

I am also preparing work to be professionally photographed.  This is a challenge, as I have close to fifty pieces that need photographing. I am starting to think it might be more affordable to buy a subscription to Adobe Photoshop Elements after all!

I created a quick two and a half minute video of my studio on YouTube, for your viewing pleasure.  It is, of necessity, very brief. If people show an interest, I may do a longer, more detailed one later.

Well that’s it for this past week.  If you have been reading, thank-you muchly.  Take care everyone, and have a great week!

Studio Clean Up and More…

Studio Clean Up and More…

I finished Sketchbook Revival 2022 and embarked on a clean up and reorganization of my studio this week.  I finally parted with a box of old original artwork.  I hope the thrift stores we donated to recognize the value of what they have and can actually earn some money from it for a good cause.  At any rate things are looking a lot better.  My main objective was to get my art supplies out in the open so I can easily grab them to use them!

I also managed to repair one of the old rugs I purchased in February and placed it on the studio floor.  It was going to go under the tables in the sitting area, but I was very nervous of having it under the coffee table and chair legs.  Plus the design would be hidden.  So I pulled it out into the middle of the floor.

I also worked on my South Korean appliqué quilt this week.  I have eleven blocks finished, and am working on the twelfth.  I’m trying to decide if I want to go any larger.  It’s a lot of work and I really would prefer to rug hook.

To that end,  I decided to buy my own scanner and printer.   I picked up my scanner last week.  My printer has to be brought in from Toronto and won’t arrive until this week at the earliest.  I used the scanner and photo editing software to scan, enlarge and print my largest Parker’s Cove pattern.  I did it the hard way.  A friend later told me the easy way!

I am working my way through “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron for the third time in my life.  I do it, but with a few modifications.  It takes time to do.  The tasks and exercises are often time and energy consuming.  However, it is worthwhile to do it once every five to ten years…to refresh my memory and see where I’m at…how I’ve progressed.

I attended several crafting events last week.  Wednesday I attended three!  In the morning I got together with some crafty family members and friends online to chat and craft.  That’s when I work on my appliqué quilt.

Wednesday afternoon I got together on Zoom with a group of rug hookers.  This week I worked on repairing the large vintage rug I purchased.

Wednesday evening was special.  I was at an online event hosted by Beth Miller on her Mighty Networks site, Paris House Creative Community.  It was a Q&A on book proposals and publishing.  It was very helpful and informative.

I’m really enjoying Beth’s Mighty Networks site, and encourage you to check it out!  It’s an inspiring and encouraging place to be.  Topics are not only about rug hooking, but also soap making, beekeeping, chicken raising, cooking, knitting, etcetera.  There is a lot of variety, especially if you start a thread or sign up to attend a Zoom event.

Thursday I reorganized the studio in the morning and hosted a rug hooking friend there in the afternoon.  She had some good ideas on reorganization.  I finished repairing the large vintage hooked rug and placed it on the floor. Then switched to designing the layout for my appliqué quilt.

Friday I attended a Zoom rug hooking group in the afternoon.  I cleaned my studio more while chatting with the other rug hookers.  Towards the end of the meeting I took them on a virtual studio tour.

Last week was business taxes as well.  I have those finished and in to the accountant. Now I’m just filing receipts.

I am not sure what this week holds.  It may be time for a bit of a slower pace.  I have some other projects to work on that don’t involve rug hooking.  I need to sit down and prioritize.

Well, if you have been, thanks for reading!  Have a great week everyone!

 

My Idea of a Break

My Idea of a Break

Hi everyone!  I have not been rug hooking this past week.  Sketchbook Revival 2022 has been on for the last two weeks and ended Sunday. It was a blast!  I highly encourage Sketchbook Revival for creative people who want try out new tools, techniques and instructors. Check out Karen Abend’s website. I believe you have to pay for past content, but if you join Sketchbook Revival when it happens mid-March to April every year, then it’s free!

Instead of rug hooking I’ve also been back working on the South Korean appliqué quilt.  Ten blocks down.  At least six more to go.   I am undecided how big I want to make it.

In other news…my website address will be changing.  I am switching from WordPress to Shopify.  Hopefully it will be easier to understand and manage.  Plus I have a website developer who will be around to help me when I need it.

If you have been, thanks for reading!  Have a great week everyone!

 

What’s Up?

What’s Up?

I’m still working on sewing hanging sleeves on wall hangings.  I was out to pick up some hardwood dowels to hang them.

I’m still thinking about the fishermen’s rope edging on the Parker’s Cove wall hangings.  Alternatively, I saw some black parachute cord I might braid for an edge.  Still thinking.

“The Farm” is coming along.  I am working on the sky.  I am not sure I like it, so it is difficult to motivate myself to work on it.

I have decided to turn the onion skin dyeing workshop into a paid course. I have a lot of video to edit, as well as audio.  Plus I have more to record. This week I have more video filming to do.

I am currently soaking half of my previously dyed onion skin wool in water, in preparation for an after bath of dyer’s alum.  I’m curious to see if it will shift the colour without adding more dye solution.   If not, then I’ll add more dye solution and see what happens.   It could be interesting.

If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week everyone!

 

 

Happenings

Happenings

Good morning everyone!  This past week has been busy and fun.  I enjoyed time spent hemming the two Parker’s Cove wallhangings and the Boucherouite wallhanging.  Next up is hanging sleeves on the backs. Then to add the titles.

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Coming up with titles for pieces has always been a struggle for me.  I try to somehow relate the title to the concept or idea that inspired the piece.  Other times it is based on memories, like “The Farm”.  Sometimes, if I’m really lacking in creative ideas, it’s just a numbering system, like “Parker’s Cove #1”, “Parker’s Cove #2”, etcetera.

I decided to call the Boucherouite wallhanging “Moroccan Dream”.  It was inspired by the Moroccan Boucherouite rugs, but isn’t really a Boucherouite.  From what I can find online, there are no circles in true Boucherouite rugs.  So “Moroccan Dream” is more in the style of a Boucherouite rug, but not a true Boucherouite.

I’m still waiting for inspiration on the Parker’s Cove series of wall hangings.  They deserve better than just a numbering system.  I wanted to name them after the owners of the fishing shacks, but I don’t know who they are or how to find out, short of going there one day and bothering the fishermen and women as they either leave or come back from fishing.  Hmmm…

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In other news…I am still preparing for the onion skin dyeing workshop.  I have also started video taping for an online video course on onion skin dyeing. I’ve had great fun dyeing wool fabric this week, and experimenting with mordants and different dyeing techniques.

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I have also been experimenting with “stories” on Facebook and Instagram. I am hoping to place more content on Instagram in the coming days.  Check out my Jean Ottosen Studios Instagram account for updates.  Next up is to learn how to effectively create and use Reels.

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I attended a great Biz/Studio Q&A on Beth Miller’s Parris House Creative Community on Mighty Networks this past week.  A lot of topics were covered and good ideas were discussed.  I have a lot of ideas to work on.

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In other news…after months of struggling with a rug hooking frame that was virtually falling apart, I finally gave it and some Chair Doctor glue to a carpenter friend to fix it for me.  I have had this frame over ten years, and used it heavily.  It owes me nothing.  Still it is my favourite frame.  It’s great to have it back and in working order.

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In yet more news…I have been busy spinning up some alpaca, Corriedale wool and wool roping to make a nice fuzzy yarn for dyeing and hooking into my wallhangings.  The people of the ASH Guild (Atlantic Spinners and Handweavers) have been very helpful.  I attend their Zoom Fibre Days and learn a lot.

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Well, if you have made it this far, thank-you for reading.  I hope everyone has a great week!  Until next time, take care!

Monday Ramblings

Monday Ramblings

Good morning everyone!  This will be my one and only blog post this week.  I have several projects on the go.

  • the Boucherouite is almost finished hooking.  I need to decide on a finish and do it.
  • “The Farm” is waiting in the wings. I have ideas in my mind for how I want to accomplish it. It will definitely be a mixed media piece.
  • the Parker’s Cove series is partly on backing.  I think I will need a dye day to create more fabric of the right colours.
  • I am preparing to teach the herringbone edge to a group on Beth Miller’s Parris House Creative Community network on Mighty Networks.
  • I also have another rug hooking project I’m working on behind the scenes for now.
  • I have several Zoom meetings to attend and one to run this week.  I plan on playing around with how Zoom works, so I can offer a seamless workshop experience in the future. Stay tuned!…

I hope everyone has a great week!

 

Blog Review & Changes Afoot

Blog Review & Changes Afoot

Good evening everyone. I have been working on a lot of projects around here, so am backing off my blog for a bit.  I’ll be going to a once a week post on Mondays.  Most of my readers check-in on Tuesdays, so that should give them something to read throughout the week.

One of the projects I’m focusing on right now is the Boucherouite of course. It is almost finished hooking. While I enjoyed it, it’s definitely time to move on.

To that end I’ll be working on “The Farm” simultaneously with more Parker’s Cove pieces. I am still wanting to do the Parker’s Cove series and have some creative ideas for framing them.  We’ll see what transpires.

Aside from that, I’ve been laying low as far as online hook-ins have gone this week.  I’m busy learning new things here. I am looking forward to showing some progress on projects Monday.

Snow Day!

Snow Day!

We woke up to a fresh blanket of snow covering the ground this morning, and more snow falling. It was quiet and beautiful!

A snow day for us means an at home day. So today I’ve been doing “errands”  and paying bills online.  I’ve also been transferring files from my iMac to my Lenovo laptop.  My iMac is on its last legs and I will not be replacing it.

I managed to copy four more Parker’s Cove fishing shack wall hangings onto backing. I have at least one more long one to transfer to backing, and several smaller ones yet.

I have not worked on the Boucherouite rug since Friday.  Nor have I worked on “The Farm”.  

I have finished spinning and plying some dark green Corriedale wool for rug hooking.

Plus I attended a Zoom lecture by Tom Hannihar, sponsored by the Textile Museum Associates of Southern California, on the molas of Panama and Columbia. A mola is a type of handwork created using reverse appliqué, appliqué and embroidery.  It is often made by girls and women, and sewn to their blouses. It was a fascinating lecture.

This weekend they have one on the women artists of Morocco.  I plan to attend that Zoom lecture too.  

I am currently reading “Color Choices” by Stephen Quiller. This book is aimed at artists and uses manufactured paint names for the various colours on the colour wheel.  The concepts are good for all media though. I am enjoying it. I hope to finish it by the end of the month.

I am also embarking on a re-reading of Julia Cameron’s “The Artist’s Way”. I am doing it with a group of people on Beth Miller’s Parris House Creative Community on Mighty Networks.   I learned a lot about myself the first time through this book over 20 years ago, and I’m thinking it might be time to revisit it now.

Mighty Networks is a paid platform, and Beth is just getting started there. However she already has some demos, a crafting afternoon, and a finishing afternoon once a month in the works. There are plans to offer courses through the site as well.  Plus there are boards on a wide variety of topics.  You can check out her site on a free 3 day trial.  After that it’s $9.99 USD per month.

Well, if you have been, thanks for reading!  Have a great week everyone!

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Welcome to 2022!  While I had a good year last year, I’m pleased to be moving on this year.  I finished many projects in 2021, including a series of hooked rugs, and a very old quilt. I also finished knitting not one toque, but two, for Christmas gifts. And I started knitting a pair of socks.

I was delighted to be able to help a young lady learn rug hooking this holiday season.  She was gifted a kit and I created a video specially for her.  I hope she continues to rug hook and enjoys it.

While I did not post to my blog over the holidays, followers on my social media accounts (Facebook in particular) will notice I have been posting new work from the last few years in my shop on this website.  I have had such trouble with my checkout that I’ve neglected posting new work. I’ve currently disabled the cart and checkout process by placing my shop on vacation.

However, if you want to purchase anything, feel free to email me at jeanottosenstudios@gmail.com.  I am still here and will ship to you.

This year’s plans are to move forward with a new series of hooked mats I hope to put on backing this week.  Hubby and I have driven around Nova Scotia, our new home province, a lot, and have discovered some wonderful places full of beauty and character.  I hope to create visual memories of these places for my home and others.

And now for the big news!  I have finished the series of wall hangings based on my children’s poetry!  The inspiration poetry was written or spoken from ages five to seventeen.  I hooked ten wall hangings inspired by the poems.  Most of the wall hangings have the poem that inspired it on the back on a label.  Eight of these pieces are for sale.  Contact me for more information.

And in even bigger news…!  I have had an article published in the January 2022 issue of Rug Hooking Magazine!  It is about the poetry series.  I was very pleased to be able to work with the editor and a photographer on this article.   A big thank-you to all involved!

If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week everyone!

 

FOR SALE FEATURE: Star Wall Hangings

FOR SALE FEATURE: Star Wall Hangings

Good afternoon all!  Today’s feature are these larger versions of the bright star ornaments.  These are 6 inches square. Once again, no two stars are the same.  They are lined with coordinating cotton quilting fabric.  The hanging loops are made of silk ribbon. They are wool, velvet and silk hand hooked on linen.  Some yarn and fabric.  The yarn is often hand spun. Fibre is a mix of hand dyed, “as is” and indie dyed by other artists.

I often hang these in the top corners of archways in my house during the holiday season.  They can hang “as is”, or from a garland.  I have also hung them on the wall as regular decor.

Each wall hanging is $50 CAD, plus shipping and handling. Contact me through my contact form if interested.

 

Weekly Review – It’s Finished!

Weekly Review – It’s Finished!

Good evening everyone!  I finished hooking “Where Are We Going?”, and with it the poetry series of hooked wall hangings. This weekend I will be hemming and attaching hanging sleeves to it and “The Weave”.

I am pleased with this series, and also happy to be moving on.  I’ve been working on it for far longer than I anticipated, due to hooking for other reasons, and moving cross country.  The full series took me eight *years* to complete!  I am a slow hooker who packs a lot of life into her days.  Hooking is only one of my areas of interest.

This week I have been busy transferring files from an old external hard drive that is being retired because the company that made it is no longer going to support it.  I still have more files to go.  The hard drive stopped recognizing all my Apple devices.  However it still recognizes Hubby’s PC, so he transferred everything to flash drives and we’ve been transferring files that way.  I’ve had to go through every file to make sure there were none missing and no duplicates. Time consuming to say the least. We won’t be buying that type of hard drive again.

We are still busy preparing for Christmas. There’s been a flurry of activity and plans surrounding the occasion. I unpacked the pre-lit pencil Christmas tree to make sure all the lights were in working order. They are!   I’m trying to decide how I want to decorate this year – casual or glam?  Hmmm…I think casual.

If you have been, thanks for reading. Have a great weekend everyone!

Blank Note Cards!

Blank Note Cards!

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned I had ordered new blank note cards. Well they’re here!  Each card is a standard note card size with a high quality image on the front. They are on high quality card stock. I am selling these for $5 CAD each, or 5 for $20, plus free shipping in Canada if you order ten or more.  Limited stock available!  First come, first served!

Payment will be through PayPal.  Contact me at jeanottosenstudios@gmail.com for more information.

Back From New Brunswick

Back From New Brunswick

We had a great weekend trip up to New Brunswick and back.  We visited Kouchibouquac National Park and scouted it out for a potential bicycle trip for Hubby next year.  We had an interesting time exploring New Brunswick.  We were careful to stick to the car, have picnic lunches, and stay with our generous hosts every night. Covid cases are on the upswing there.

On our way home we stopped at The Alphabet Store in Oxford, Nova Scotia, also known as GJDE Enterprises Ltd.  It’s a fascinating store reminiscent of the old fashioned small town general store. There was something for everyone there!  They even sold some Briggs & Little yarn in my colours – very bright!  I left with a bag of goods.

After we arrived home my note cards arrived!  I’m going to prep them for sale this week.  They will be selling for $5 each, or 5 for $20.  I’ll officially launch them next week.

I’m looking forward to getting back into the swing of things here at home. Thanksgiving is coming soon, and bringing more company with it.

I hope to be able to finish up “Doom”, and with it the Poetry series.  It’s been a long haul, but worth it.  I learned a lot working on that series, but I’m ready for something new.

If you have been, thanks for reading   Have a great rest of your week everyone!

 

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

I’m back at it again!  I am finished the main part of the field in “Doom”.  I’m about one quarter done.

I had the opportunity to hook on it during Beth Miller’s Parris House Thursday Zoom Hook-in yesterday. If you’re interested in joining the hook-in and are on Facebook, do a Facebook search for the group and ask to join.  Beth is very encouraging and always looking for new members.

This week, after returning home from the bicycle trip, was rest and relaxation time. We were able to put the house mostly in order again.

I ordered more greeting cards for the shop – some old designs and some new ones. I am also ordering from a Canadian company this time. I’m hoping they turn out okay. They should arrive in early October. When they do, I’ll write a blog post featuring them.

If you have been, thanks for reading!  Have a great weekend everyone!

Weekly Review – This and That

Weekly Review – This and That

I’m trying out Trello project management app due to a reader’s comment not long ago. I have mixed feelings. I like it for breaking big projects down into smaller steps and creating a daily to do list.  But I find it difficult to get a good global overview. I haven’t decided if that’s good or bad. Sometimes a global overview can be overwhelming and freeze you up.  Other times it can show you where duplication is happening.

I’ve used mind maps since 1993. I’m used to them.  But I think that’s part of the problem with me assessing Trello – I’m biased.  So I’m going to keep experimenting with both and see if one works better than the other.  I’m using SimpleMind for mind mapping…the paid version. It may be they complement each other.  I don’t know.  I have to play with Trello more.

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In other news, I discovered a new website this week for budding artists and experienced alike. Check out Jeanne Oliver’s website.  There are free courses, self study courses and actual paid classes  I notice Deanne Fitzpatrick has a class being offered there as well.  Lots to work with.  I plan on exploring some.

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I’ve been reading a new-to-me book called “Desire to Inspire” by Christine Mason Miller.  It is a book on various artists with creative exercises in it to help you use your “creative passion to transform the world “.  I’m on chapter two. I’ll let you know how it goes.

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I’m still hooking on the border of “Gyeongju”.  It’s a lot bigger than I thought, but it’s looking good!   I figure I have two more hours of hooking to do and it will be finished!

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I processed (or finished) some hand spun alpaca yarn for knitting.  It’s hanging to dry as I write.

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I attended a free nature journaling lecture via Zoom yesterday afternoon.  It was hosted by John Muir Laws.  It was about flower and leaf configurations.  In it I found out the first week of June is International Nature Journalling Week.  John’s website offers a series of Zoom workshops for free or donation (as you are able) during the week.  I’m debating taking some.  It depends on my time.

There is also a nature journaling conference called Wild Wonder June 23-27th. That is a paid event.  More information can be found on John’s website.

If you have been, thanks for reading!  Enjoy your weekend!

 

 

Lockdown Plans

Lockdown Plans

So for those of you who don’t know, all of Nova Scotia (where we live) has been placed in lockdown. We’re talking a super tight, don’t go out of your house unless you have to, lockdown. One person per household is allowed out to buy essentials – food, gas and medications – and it has to be the same individual throughout lockdown. We are allowed to walk, masked and socially distanced. If we’re a 1-2 person household, we can team up with another 1-2 person household and keep them in our bubble. When we do go shopping for groceries, gas or meds, we are not supposed to leave our community. It’s a bit stressful here right now.

So…our soil delivery for our newly made raised bed was canceled.  The greenhouse staff called and said maybe next week, maybe not until the end of May.  So much for my early spring crop. But it is what it is, and people need to stay safe!

Instead of focusing on the outdoors, which is hard to do anyways with all the rain forecast, I decided to focus on indoors.  Saturday I spent all day picking up my studio.  It was a mess!  It still has a lot of extra stuff in it that needs culling and putting away, but it’s better than before.  I made an eight minute video of the current state of my studio here.  It’s middling.   There’s still a lot to do in there.  However there is progress.  Last year this time we were dealing with this.

I also took time to do a quick two minute video of my nature journal.  It can be found here.  I hope to work on sketching some flowers I received for Mother’s Day.  I’m also contemplating a Great Blue Heron page for my nature journal.

Today I’m sitting down with my hook and working on “Gyeongju”.  I am also doing paperwork for my business.

If you have been, thanks for reading.  Have a great week!

 

 

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