Exhibit Time!

Exhibit Time!

Hi everyone!  Lots happening on the art front these days!

  1. Today I run some work up to Visual Voice Art Gallery in Truro, Nova Scotia for jurying into their Group Spring Show. The show runs from June 20th – July 16th.
  2. I will be part of an exhibit, along with the rest of The Bonnie Hookers, at Scott Manor House in Bedford, Nova Scotia from July 14-16th. A few of us will be taking shifts at the exhibit to demonstrate rug hooking.
  3. I am taking an artist retreat for four days next week to visit Parker’s Cove again, and check out venues that might want to hang my fishing shack series.

Aside from that…

  • I am sewing the cording onto the Parker’s Cove pieces and whipping the ends.
  • I also started hooking my large Parker’s Cove piece.
  • Plus I am transferring more small pieces on backing.

It’s been a busy week in the rug hooking department.

I would be delighted to meet up with any of you at one of the shows!  Make yourself known to me as a blog reader, and I’ll try and spend some time with you going around the gallery.

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!

 

Home Happenings

Home Happenings

I am busy sketching, transferring and hooking more of the Parker’s Cove series. It is a big series with a lot of different pieces to it.  Last week the hooking was actually quite slow.  I spent a lot of time planning the series and adding to the mind map for it. I also spent time dyeing wool fabric for it.

I took time to go through my morning pages, looking for ideas for future creative endeavours.  In fact, dealing with my morning pages from “The Artist’s Way” have taken up so much time that I dread them.  It’s nice weather here, and I want to be outside.

Hubby and I picked up a new gazebo last week. Well, Hubby and a friend.  We couldn’t fit the first one in our car to bring it home and Walmart doesn’t deliver.  When a friend found out, they came to our rescue, and her hubby went with mine for a gazebo in their hatchback.  The two men even set it up right away!   We all celebrated with tea and cookies inside it when they were finished.

Other than that there has been a lot of yardwork happening.

  • I removed the tulips the deer keep eating.
  • We dug up an area of goutweed, only to find landscape cloth and what looks like a dry ditch underneath.
  • I weeded and raked our raised beds.
  • I tried to stake our peonies with tomato cages with no success.  They need something bigger and sturdier.
  • Hubby has been busy weeding the front yard and planting beds.
  • A neighbour came over to cut a few trees from the many on our property.
  • We have been emptying the dirt out of the cloth pots I use for the deck garden.  My goal is to clean them and replant them.

There is a lot in the works right now.  I’m in the middle of moving my  website to Shopify.

I apologize to my email subscribers who received multiple blog emails on Saturday.  The blog posts were old ones.  We, my web developer and I, still don’t know what happened, but we understand it has stopped.  Please let me know if it has not.  My blog is not stopping.  It is merely being moved to another platform.

And to the person or entity in Pakistan that accessed over 1170 blog posts in 2 hours yesterday morning…we’re watching what you’re up to…

Well, if you have been reading, thank-you.  Have a great week everyone!

Back in the Groove

Back in the Groove

Good morning everyone! I hope everyone is enjoying the long weekend.

Last week I spent some time dyeing fibre for the Parker’s Cove series.  I used straight up ProChem Key Lime for the bright neon green, and the other colours were from the Woolly Mason Jar system. Lucy Richard has a great system for matching colours quickly.  If you’re a dyer who is often in a hurry, her system is the way to go!

I’ve been working on the Parker’s Cove fishing shack series. I have finished two small pieces this week and have a larger piece on backing.

“The Farm” is currently languishing on the sidelines.  I have a steep learning curve to learn multiple techniques I want to use for this piece, so am wanting to wait until I have more time and energy to devote to it  That, plus I want to finish my Parker’s Cove series of at least ten pieces by mid-November.

The South Korean appliqué quilt blocks are almost complete.  I decided not to go further than the twelve blocks suggested by the pattern.  However I will also be putting sashing between the blocks and a border all around…neither called for in the pattern. That will make it large enough to be used as a lap quilt. It will be machine quilted by a professional long arm quilter.

I took part in many events this week related to rug hooking.  Wednesday there were two online meetings: one for crafting (where I transferred a pattern to backing), and one for rug hooking (where I  hooked a small piece for the Parker’s Cove series). Thursday I attended an in-person hook-in at a friend’s place. I started another small Parker’s Cove piece. And Thursday evening I attended a Zoom presentation by Susan Feller on Beth Miller’s Parris House Creative Community on Mighty Networks.  Susan talked about what it takes to become a professional artist as a rug hooker. A very interesting presentation with lots to chew on.

I also spent time cleaning up my studio after the whirlwind that was Sketchbook Revival!  I haven’t had it looking that good in ages, so I took photos and immortalized the occasion on Instagram and Facebook. Haha!

It is now a mess again…because I’ve decided to finish a project that’s been percolating a long time in my brain…like five years.  Our trip to South Korea in 2017 needs addressing.  I did create and have a photo book printed, but I had no place for ephemera.  So after Sketchbook Revival I decided it was time to sit down and do it.  I pulled out old bookbinding supplies and created a blank journal with cartridge drawing paper and Waterford cold press watercolour paper.  I’m highly doubtful the journal is big enough to hold everything, but I need to do some serious culling of memorabilia anyways.

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

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!

Weekly Review: sidetracked

Weekly Review: sidetracked

Hi everyone!  I had one of those weeks this week. I was sidetracked by computer issues and different exciting happenings I can’t tell you about yet. It’s a project still in the planning stages.

However, I did accomplish some of what I set out to do this week!  The Boucherouite rug I am working on is half finished.  It’s great fun to work on.  I am enjoying playing with pattern and colour.

I changed up “The Farm” a bit.  I’m thinking of possible techniques I could use to create 3D flowers and plants around the edges.  I’m considering felting flowers, silk embroidery, beadwork, stumpwork embroidery, Brazilian embroidery… There are a lot of options.  I’ve spent a lot of time on YouTube watching tutorials.

I have more Parker’s Cove fishing shacks in my sketchbook and some ready to go on backing.  I’m hoping to work on those tonight and tomorrow.

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

 

Parker’s Cove

Parker’s Cove

Good morning everyone!  By now, if you’ve been reading my blog, you know a bit about Parker’s Cove in Nova Scotia and how it has inspired me.  To give you an idea of the true colours of the fishing shacks of Parker’s Cove check out the gallery below…

I usually start all my pieces with photographs…lots of photographs. Then narrow things down from there.  I try to get just the perfect angle in the photos, but in this case the wharf and the ocean were in the way, so in some cases I had to fudge things.

I spent some time sketching the architecture of the fishing shacks, only to realize it is really the colours and shapes I’m after, not so much the lines.  So I experimented this past weekend with semi-abstract colour blocking.  I say semi-abstract because they really look like my line drawings, if you were to strip away all the lines and add shapes and colour.

I’m having a lot of fun playing with this series so far.  I have no idea where it’s going to lead me and what the end product will be, but I’m enjoying the ride so far!

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

Weekly Review – sidetracked

Weekly Review – sidetracked

Most people get sidetracked by summer fun this time of year.  Me?  I’m sidetracked by a kitchen renovation and food processing and storage for the coming fall and winter.

Yesterday I was in the basement rearranging the freezers and taking inventory. I actually started the inventory process in the cupboards on Wednesday.  I admit, I’m a bit of an organizing freak.  I like to know what I have and how much. Then I can plan to use it up.

I used to draw up a menu plan and follow it religiously.  Not anymore!  I make the menu plan and pick and choose meals from it depending on how I feel and my time constraints that particular day. It is a lot more relaxing that way.

In kitchen renovation news…the cabinets are half built. The installer will take over the kitchen on the 21st and remove the old kitchen.  Hubby will sand and paint.  The flooring guy will come do his thing. Then the installer comes back.  Then we have to call in a plumber to connect the sink and dishwasher. BUT none of the hookups can happen until we buy and receive appliances!  Rumour has it appliances are hard to acquire right now. We’re off today to check.

In rug hooking news…I’m almost done hooking “The Weave”!  I figure I have another three to four hours of hooking. Then the finishing.  I’m guessing, with everything else going on, it will be a couple of weeks yet.   I’m looking forward to “The Bubble”.

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

Thankful Tuesday

Thankful Tuesday

Today is a red letter day!  There is finally a start on our IKEA kitchen renovation!   We’ve been waiting a year.  It took six months to get all the materials and supplies.  We still haven’t bought appliances. We’re buying from IKEA. We were assured they have plenty in stock in their local warehouse.  We shall see.  I’m looking forward to a functional kitchen I can also use for dyeing fibre.

Meanwhile, I took this weekend off. Sunday we travelled to visit family.  It was a long, but nice drive.

My plans for the week?  Finish hooking “The Weave” and colour plan the next poetry wall hanging.  Probably “The Bubble”.

Otherwise?  It’s canning, processing and freezing food time. It’s time to stock up for winter.  This past weekend I made bread and butter pickles, blueberry honey jam, strawberry apple lemon jam and red currant jelly.

I’m busy organizing my cupboards, fridge and freezers. We have two freezers – one small chest freezer and a medium sized upright one. I put in an online order for some wire mesh bins to help organize the upright freezer.  I’m looking forward to having those in hand in a week or so.

Lots to do!

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

“The Weave” and Other Works

“The Weave” and Other Works

Good morning everyone! So you may be wondering which project I’ve decided to work on next.  I looked at my project mind map and updated it. I want to move onto some Nova Scotia themed mats, but I have three small poetry mats left from my children’s poetry to complete.  All three are on backing.  All three present different challenges. So I decided to finish those up.

I decided to hook “The Weave” next.  It is based on a poem my youngest daughter wrote around 17 years of age on the fabric of life.  I already put it on backing last summer. This weekend I colour planned it.  I am using a hexad colour scheme, which is new to me.  So I sent a series of texts, including photos, to my weaving relative with excellent colour sense to get her opinion.  I am eagerly awaiting her reply.  In the meantime, I’ve actually started hooking it.

While I am finishing the poetry series up, I am preparing for my next series of wall hangings focusing on the wharves of Nova Scotia.  Hubby and I went on a day trip with my walking buddy to her cabin/trailer on Digby Neck this spring before lockdown. I had a lovely time stopping in at the various wharves in the area, taking oodles of photos!

This weekend I started the preliminary sketching for a new series.   I am not sure how I am going to represent some of these wharves.  I may end up going slightly abstract…or not.  We shall see.

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

Misty Monday Morning

Misty Monday Morning

This weekend I pulled weeds, finished preparing the alpaca yarn for sale, and pulled more weeds. Hubby and I had several serious conversations about the yard. Something has to be done sooner rather than later.  We have a major goutweed (aka Bishop’s weed) infestation happening.

Our new mat for the deck gazebo came Saturday.  It’s gorgeous and it’s from Costco.  It was a very good deal.  We are pleased to have a nice place to read, rug hook and spin on the deck out of the sun.

Plans for this week include more weed pulling.  But also more creative work.  I want to get “Gyeongju” finished and off my frame.  I also want it steamed and blocked.  I’m stuck on hemming until I can either have my serger repaired or get to someone else’s serger to do the job. Right now no one is going anywhere due to Covid lockdown.

I’ve been playing around with the project management app, Trello, and one thing it shows me clearly is how many of my projects are stuck because of lockdown.  We aren’t supposed to go out except for essentials, and even then only one person is to go.  That’s Hubby. I can’t call repairing a serger or buying supplies for a hanging system essential.  And I certainly wouldn’t want Hubby to handle those transactions on his own.  So…I can go so far with “Gyeongju” and then I wait…

I am also hoping to enter all my projects into Trello to see how many years of work I have ahead of me.  I need to break it down into a reasonable workload.

Well, if you have been reading, thanks!  I hope you have a good week.  Take care everyone, and stay safe.

Someday Maybe

Someday Maybe

So after Friday’s post on “How do you decide what to do next?”, I decided it was time to review my Someday Maybe list. The Someday Maybe list is actually the brain child of David Allen – author of “Getting Things Done”.   My list is actually two mind maps.  One is for just rug hooking and business related activities, and the other is for the rest of my life.

I’ve written about mind maps before. Invented by Tony Buzan, they are basically a visual representation of ideas linked together by lines emanating from a central theme or topic.  Google “mind maps” and you’ll find lots of examples.

I like to use mind maps for my Someday Maybe projects/ideas because sometimes things intertwine and you can do two things at once…if you see the connection ahead of time. You can plan your time and materials more efficiently.  A mind map also allows you to see an overview of your plan at a glance.

I like to update my Someday Maybe mind maps after each retreat and at the beginning of the year.  So that’s at least twice a year.   Last year I was blessed with being able to have three retreats!  That is very uncommon for me.  I updated my Someday Maybe mind map after each retreat.

You know though, I have to take the space here to say, you can over-plan your time too.  A mind map or list is fine for helping you focus and stay on track, but you don’t want it to be a straight jacket!  You want to build in time for play and exploration.

I’m way behind in my initial plan, but you know what?  I don’t care!  Why not?  Well, during those times when I “should” have been rug hooking or promoting my business, I was busy learning new things.  I took time out for Karen Miller’s Workshop Weeks, and Karen Abend’s Sketchbook Revival, and to learn nature journaling.  I trust that these experiences and explorations will expand on and improve my technique and inform me as an artist.  I trust the emphasis on learning will pay rewards in the long term.  Plus, everyone just needs down time to relax and have fun.  If rug hooking becomes just another chore, you won’t want to do it.  Build in time to play.

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

 

Plans for the Week

Plans for the Week

I have a busy week ahead of me. I have two Zoom meetings. Plus we need to run errands and catch up on household chores. I have a meeting with my framer about the embroidery and handwork I am having framed.  In-between all that I hope to hook more on the border of “Gyeongju” (aka the South Korean roof tile end caps rug), and embellish more on “Time”.

Both my hubby and I receive our first shots of the Covid vaccine this week. I’m building in some down time just in case.  I have some reading to catch up on.  There were also quite a few freebies from Sketchbook Revival 2021 that I’d like to follow up on.  Plus a friend sent me some bird photos to practice nature journaling.

I’m also trying to put my photos in order to have some printed professionally.  I am planning another series.

Project Planning with Mind Maps

Project Planning with Mind Maps

Good morning everyone! Today is Family Day where I live – a holiday. Most stores are closed, so we’re staying home.

I mentioned mind maps for project planning in Friday’s blog post. I thought I’d explain a bit about what they are and how I came to be doing them.

Mind mapping in its simplest form is a diagram similar to a flow chart, with multiple “arms” or branches you can designate however you want. Usually the “arms” all radiate from a central image or note of some sort. I used it for decision making at first. Then for note taking. The central idea or focus of the whole mind map goes in the central part. The radial arms are supporting ideas or a further breakdown of the topic at hand.

I was introduced to mind mapping when my daughters were in Kindergarten and grade three. It started with me trying to analyze a difficult situation we had with the local school. I needed to consider a lot of variables at once, brainstorm ideas, and come up with a solution that everyone understood.

I knew a school teacher and she loaned me a book by Nancy Margulies called “Mapping Inner Space”. I read it and, while it pertained to the classroom situation, could see applications for it far beyond that.

I wasn’t the only one apparently. The concept of the mind map was invented by Tony Buzan. He wrote several books aimed at educators and the general public. After reading his book “The Mind Map Book” I was hooked! I was mind mapping decisions we had to make, vacation plans, my daughters’ learning, and project planning.

To give you an idea of what a mind map looks like, here is my current unfinished projects mind map. These are projects I’d like to complete this year.

As you can see, I have a lot I want to do! Each branch, or arm, of my mind map can be further broken down, or continued, by adding steps to my various projects, like below:

I use an excellent little program called Simple Mind. It is an app I use on my iPad. I find the iPad easiest for mind mapping. I have the full version of Simple Mind. It’s only a few dollars and has been well worth it for me.

You can easily sketch or draw mind maps by hand, especially if you are artistically inclined. You don’t have to include colour, but I do. I find it helps me remember things. Some people just use images or illustrations. But that is optional too. The idea is we remember images better than words. I find it easiest to use point form text and colour code my mind maps.

A lot of people are into bullet journaling as an overall planning system these days. I can print my mind maps off and attach them to a page in my journal with a product called Washi tape, though you could use just about anything.

If you’re interested in learning to mind map probably the best book for a quick overview and to start is Tony Buzan’s “The Ultimate Guide to Mind Mapping”. Borrow it from your local library, grab some scrap paper and a pen, and start today! It’s easy. It’s fun. And it’s helpful.

If you’ve been reading, thanks! Have a great week everyone!

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

Good morning everyone!  It’s been a busy week for me. I’ve been working on Workshop Week 2 projects.

Monday I focused on the market tote bag from Beth Miller’s class. I finished hooking the mandala on the first side. Tuesday I started the second mandala.  By Thursday I finished it.  Now I’m looking forward to the next session to sew the tote bag up.

Monday I also worked on designing my fraktur chair pad. I had a video/text meeting with Susan Feller to help with the design. I was having problems with the placement of one element – a bud. Thankfully she knew just how to fix the problem. Basically it was an issue with balance – there were simply too many elements on one side of the stem of my carnation pattern. I was glad she could make the time to help me.  I quickly sketched the new design properly and put it on backing.  In the process of sketching the design I used colour pencils to determine colour placement. I don’t normally do my colour planning like that, but in this case it helped a lot!

Tuesday morning I worked on a design for Nadine Flagel’s class – Text to Textile.  I decided to use the hourglass shape and focus on the phrase “time to grow” in my daughter’s poem. This wall hanging will have beads on it, and, if my hands can handle it, embroidery.

Thursday I came in late to Beth Miller’s Parris House Zoom hook-in.  I had a good time listening to everyone chat while I finished hooking the mandalas for the tote bag.  I cleaned up from that project and started the hourglass pattern.

Today is Lunar New Year and we will spend time chatting with our Asian friends.  I also hope to make more progress on the hourglass pattern.

I decided this week it was time to get an overview of unfinished projects, or “planned but not started” projects.  So I created a mind map of different types of projects that need finishing.  It’s a bit disconcerting, but also a relief to have them all on paper.  I can see where I’m going with them now.  Most of them have some progress, I just need to focus on them one by one and finish them!  But that discussion is for another blog post.

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

 

Monday Morning

Monday Morning

This week is a red letter week! I finished binding the 44 year old quilt yesterday. All that is left is to fix and finish knotting the hand quilting. It’s mostly done, but needs a bit of touch up. I need daylight to see to thread needles. So it will happen Tuesday, because…

Today I have a friend coming to help me plan, measure, and cut curtains for our master bedroom. We actually have them planned already. This afternoon we’re getting together with the other friend in our five person Covid bubble to play some Scrabble. Come evening I expect to be sewing curtains. I doubt I will finish in one evening, but I should be able to finish all but the hemming in a few days.

Tuesday daylight hours are quilting time.

Wednesday I hope to have curtains hung by the end of the day. They have to hang a while before hemming. I’m leaving them a few days.

Thursday it’s back to hand quilting if I haven’t finished by then. If I have, it’s back to rug hooking. I’ve ripped out the table and mug in the corner of the “Autumn” piece I was hooking. I will be rethinking how to hook that corner.

I also have three photos of South Korea I’d like to make sketches of for some hooked pieces. Plus I have the border to finish hooking on my large South Korea rug.

Thursday I’ll also be taking my three pieces of needle work to be framed.

Friday I will be prepping for Workshop Week next week! Workshop Week is being hosted by Karen D. Miller of In The Studio. There are several teachers offering classes. I’ve signed up for four. I will have a lot of projects to finish when I’m done. I’m keeping them small, if possible. I have a lot of my own projects I want to work on.

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

Happy Friday everyone!  This week was short, but productive. I’ve been busy reading “Getting Things Done” by David Allen. I wrote down everything I had in my mind that needed doing, then created a project list from the things I needed to focus on, and then a next actions list for the list of things to do.  I’m swamped!  I’m also loving it!  But I can’t take on anymore.

I’ve also been working on my South Korean roof tile end cap wall hanging. It’s slow going, but looking better these days. A friend was over to help me pick out fibre for the border. I will be doing some dyeing and overdyeing.

We also went through the poetry wall hangings I want to hook. They are on backing and ready to go.  I just have to finish this South Korean wall hanging and swing back to them for awhile.

I’m still sketching the South Korean designs in my sketchbook. Lots to do yet. Plus I’m still working through Meryl Cook’s “The Creativity Workbook”.   I’m enjoying the inspiration of the fall colours around me.

I’ve been listening to Cindi Gay’s rug hooking podcasts while hooking or afterwards.  She is a very wise lady full of all kinds of knowledge about rug hooking.  I don’t hook the primitive style, but I still learn from her.  Thanks for doing the podcasts Cindi!

The last week of October will be a busy week.  The In My Studio Workshop Week is on then.  I have a Travel class with Karen Miller, a Words and Images class with Elizabeth Miller, and Intuitive Hooking with Meryl Cook.  There will also be a group hook-in and a panel discussion  I’m looking forward to stepping outside my comfort zone to learn more from these talented teachers and others.

If you’re interested in taking classes I believe there are a few openings left.  Contact Karen D. Miller on Facebook and check into the events she is hosting.

If you’ve been reading, thanks!  Have a great weekend!

 

Tuesday Tales

Tuesday Tales

I hope everyone had a good and happy Thanksgiving!  Even though we were encouraged to stay home or in our small bubble, it was possible to get together with family and friends through technology. Long live FaceTime, Skype, Zoom, WhatsApp and other apps that connect us!

I just went through my first Thanksgiving without a deep freezer. Let me say how thankful I am for our food supply chain. I picked up a frozen turkey Friday and it thawed in the fridge all weekend. I have a fridge that runs cold, so it needed that time to thaw. In fact, it was still partially frozen Monday morning!  I ran cold water in it before stuffing it and hoping for the best.  I cooked it in a Look bag and tin foil roasting pan, as we have no roaster and no place to store it if we did have it!  It turned out just fine.

Because our current chest freezer does not work properly and our upright freezer, which we ordered in August, has yet to arrive, I decided, in the best interest of not wasting any food, to gift our Thanksgiving guests (my daughter and her husband) with leftovers to take home. Hopefully little food will be wasted.

Other than Thanksgiving this has been a quiet weekend for me. I took some time off to read, review and reorganize. I’m reading David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” for the second or third time in about 15 years. I realize just how much I have put on my plate to deal with right now. I decided to back off and focus on the big picture – the long term view – for the moment. So I’m back in a goal setting phase, making sure every activity meshes with future goals and my vision of where I want to be ten years from now.

This is a challenge for me. My husband is seven years older than I, and is a senior now. I have discovered that in marriage planning cannot happen in isolation. You have to consider the other person and what reactions or parts they might have in the plans. This is especially true for me as I am not driving at the moment for a variety of reasons.

I am going back through photos and sketchbooks for ideas for mats of various kinds.  There are way more ideas than I can possibly hook.  It’s so hard to decide what to do and what to leave undone. Do I compromise and hook a small mat instead of a large one?  Or is it better to just not hook it at all?  In the meantime, I have South Korea mats and poetry mats to hook.

By the way, I discovered the shape of “joy” to me this weekend.  I drew a sketch to twig my memory.  It needs some revamping, but the basics are there. I may have another mat to hook soon!

If you have been reading, thanks! I hope you enjoy your week ahead.  Cheers…Jean.

 

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

I found myself really fighting my South Korea roof tile end caps wall hanging this week.  I decided to not rush it and just work on it briefly each day.  Instead I’ve been busy sketching more designs – both of South Korea and from Meryl Cook’s “The Creativity Workbook”.

Despite spending more time this week drawing designs for South Korea wall hangings, I’m not sure how many will actually make it onto backing.  I’m seriously thinking about the viewer, as well as the creative act (by me).  There’s a balance that has to be struck there for me.  In previous years I hooked too much for the viewer, with the odd exception.  Now I’m wanting to get back to the act of just creating.  It’s important for me to know what I want to say with my work first though.  So I’m thinking.

I’ve been working through Meryl Cook’s “The Creativity Workbook”.  I am paused on finding a design that expresses how I feel joy.  I did go and experience a couple of things that give me joy – walking in nature amongst the fall foliage.  I picked up a variety of shapes and colors of tree leaves and have been busy designing leaf patterns and templates.  But to actually draw joy is another matter altogether.  I think I know the color/s of joy for me, but not sure of the shape of it…yet.

Wednesday I joined an In My Studio Zoom meeting to listen to Judi Miller talk about artist residencies.  It was a very informative talk about the options available, what you need to have a successful one, and her experiences.  I thoroughly enjoyed the talk and would like to thank Judi publicly for making the time and effort to do it, and to thank Karen Miller for organizing and facilitating it.

I received my ProChem dye powder shipment this week. I’m looking forward to more dyeing.  I’m wanting to dye the pine trees, ocean and skies using Lucy Richard’s spot dye formulas.  I’ll be dyeing the old-fashioned way – in the oven – rather than in a microwave  I do not have a microwave to dedicate to dyeing, nor a place to put it.

Well that’s my review for this week.  If you’ve been reading, thanks!  I wish you  all a happy Canadian Thanksgiving weekend, wherever you may be. My next blog post will probably be posted Tuesday.  Take care everyone!

 

 

 

An interesting weekend

An interesting weekend

I had the delightful pleasure of meeting Susan Logue this weekend when she showed up on my doorstep to look at some wool for a friend. I really enjoyed contact with another rug hooker. Susan wrote the “Past & Present Antique Dyes” books, which I have and have used in the past. It was a fun time chatting with her about rug hooking, and it was nice to meet her friend.

One thing the visit made me realize was how starved I am for other artistic people in my life. I’m enjoying the online classes because of that, but somehow they aren’t the same as real live one-to-one encounters. They have their good points too though. I sure am glad to have the online experience too!

Saturday I tuned in to Lucy Richard’s FaceBook LIVE dye workshop. It was an interesting experience for me. I hadn’t microwave dyed before meeting Lucy. To be able to do a spot dye by microwave is great! And the pine tree, ocean, sky colours were great! If you head over to her website or FaceBook page you can find a link to donate to her video making efforts. If you donate $10 or more your name is entered to win a gift box of goodies. This time she is including the wool she dyed, among other things. It’s a half yard of wool folks…just saying. It’s a great deal! And a great gift. And it keeps Lucy doing videos.

I’m so anxious to get my dye studio up and going. Hubby is finishing painting the upstairs hall and then wants to do the guest room. It will be awhile before he gets to the dye studio/laundry room.

I hooked more on my South Korea roof tile end cap wall hanging. It’s slow going. It’s been awhile since I’ve hooked circles. There are a lot of circles in this wall hanging. It’s a challenge.

I started Meryl Cook’s exercises in her book “One Loop At A Time: The Creativity Workbook”. I was surprised how I could pull out one issue that was really bothering me, journal it positively, and create a rug design in under half an hour! I now have at least an 18”x18” design to put on backing and hook! I may have to expand it to 20”x20” or larger to fit in all the lettering, or cut back on the lettering.

What’s up?

What’s up?

This week will be a bit of redirection in my studio. I have an appointment today to see about having a small wall hanging framed.  I’m not sure how it will go. It’s a new custom framer. I’m hoping it’s not too expensive. I have other work that needs framing.

Tuesday I’m busy taking Karen Miller’s creativity class “Getting Inspired: How to Find Ideas for your Art”. I’m looking forward to it.  If other rug hookers are interested there may be more spaces.  Search for Karen D. Miller rug hooker and contact her.

Tuesday I’m also fielding a call from a client wishing to order some art.  Wednesday I’ll be preparing the order and attending my cardiac gym program.  Thursday I’ll be shipping the order out.

Meanwhile I am continuing my studio makeover.  We are hanging artwork on the walls.  I’m having to make tough decisions on what to hang and what to store away.  It does, however, look a lot more homey down there.

Throughout all this, and in-between it, I will be hooking on my South Korean roof tile end caps rug again.  Hubby and I have decided it will hang above the electric fireplace.   But we shall see.  The colours are not what I had planned for that space.  Still, it’s the right size, we think.  We’ll see.

Have a great week everyone!

 

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

I finished both “African Dream Mini” (10.5” x 15.25” – wool, silk, nylon on primitive linen – #6 cut) and “Hearts”! Both have a hanging sleeve on them. Next up is to cut dowels for the hanging system, find some cup hooks for them, and create Certificates of Authenticity.

After that I’ll be planning my next retreat. It’s actually going to be a painting retreat. No rug hooking. I have a third retreat in mind that I’d like to use to explore plein air hooking in the Maritimes.

What is plein air hooking? Check my blog post Monday for the answer!

Hearts – 5.5” x 19.5” – wool, silk, and nylon on primitive linen – #6 cut.
What’s Up?

What’s Up?

Things are moving along here. I spent this past weekend hooking on the “African Dream Mini” for a friend. I’ve finished the hooking. Now for the binding and hanging sleeve. I hope to finish it this week.

I’m also planning my second and third retreats this year. Nothing like making hay while the sun shines! I have no idea if I’ll be able to take advantage of my friend’s cottage in the future. One of the retreats I’m planning isn’t really a retreat. It’s a visit to see relatives. But while there I’m hoping to fit in some photography, sketching, and painting.

Later this month I’ll be talking to a new web designer/graphic artist about redesigning my website and logo. We’ll be talking branding and marketing.

In the meantime I continue to sell supplies and greeting cards on the Facebook group Buy and Sell – Rug Hooking – Canada. I’m slowly emptying out bins in my studio.

Currently I am editing another video on my studio. It is an almost final peek at it. It is not perfect. The sofa bed won’t arrive till the end of September into October. That means I’ll be short sleeping and seating in the basement till then. I also am using the studio “as is”, so it’s a bit cluttered.

I hope everyone is geared up for a great August! Take care and catch up with you on Friday.

Making time…

Making time…

This weekend I decided to rest and relax and just “be”. Funny thing about that. As soon as I made that decision oodles of possible activities and things to do crowded my mind and I ended up scheduling them in my planner on my ‘to do’ list. So in reality this weekend became a time for planning and doing.

What did I plan? Saturday I rested, tended to my deck garden, and put down everything I could think of to do in regards to my business in another mind map – a six page mind map. I also dried some peppermint.

I also connected with someone who wants to buy all my scrapbooking supplies. My goal is to deliver them before the end of the month. I’ll be truly dependent on digital scrapbooking after that.

What did I plan Sunday? My next retreat! I also finished drying the peppermint – there was a lot of it – and dried some parsley. Plus I made sourdough discard crackers.

I also managed to serge the edges of all the patterns I drew on linen during my retreat. Plus I colour planned a medium sized African Dream wall hanging. It’s about 10” x 16”.

I set up some books for my business. I had officially shut my business down the end of 2018, when we made the decision to move in 2019. Now we’re relocated I’m wanting to keep records for the taxman or woman. Plus, I’d like to know my income and expenses for my own general knowledge…and planning. I’m in the process of starting my business up again now.

After a walk Sunday evening I updated my plan. LOL! So much for sitting and just “being”!

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