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Weekly Review – Dye Jobs and other news

Well, here are the results of this week’s dye jobs.  The photos do not do the colours justice.  They are more intense and deeper than the photos show.  I really enjoyed dyeing these colours.  I’ve been away from the dye pot too long!

An added bonus this week was receiving Gene Shepherd’s “Prepared to Dye” DVD set in the mail Monday.  When I wasn’t dyeing fabric I was watching his DVDs.  He does an excellent job of making what some see as complicated into a much easier to understand and do process.  The first DVD in the set covers the basic traditional rug hooking dyeing methods.  The second DVD is devoted to various spot dyeing techniques.  And the third DVD is devoted to various dye bleeding techniques.  I am excited and eager to try some of his techniques.

All this dyeing and class prep got me thinking it might be time for another trip to my favourite rug hooking supplier in Cochrane, Alberta – Legacy Studio – for more supplies.  I’ve been making a wish list for the trip.

I am also busy preparing for tomorrow’s Start to Finish class.  It’s on colour planning and material selection.  By the end of the class we should be hooking rug.

I hope everyone has a good weekend planned.  This weekend is a special event for us.  Hubby is being honoured at a community event and his 65th birthday is Monday!  We plan to make the most of it.

Weekly Review – Exhibits & Sales

 

I’ve had an interesting week. It’s that time of year to be applying for exhibits and sales.  I’ve applied for two so far.  I’m not sure exactly where I stand in the application process on both of these exhibits and sales.  I’ll fill you in when I learn more.

I did manage to upload more product – rug hooks – for sale.

I also chatted with my web developer about more ideas for the website. I look forward to upcoming changes as time goes by.

I was able to prepare my sample pattern and fiber kit for the Curves class next Saturday.   I have also written more on my course outlines.

I pulled two books off my library shelf to help with a revamped business plan.  One is “The Creative Entrepreneur” by Lisa Sonora Beam, and the other is “The Right-Brain Business Plan” by Jennifer Lee.  I’ve used these two books before with considerable success.  So I’m not really starting from scratch.  Just planning what to do this year.

I finished reading “Canadian Folk Art to 1950” by Fleming and Rowan.  Lots of lovely photos of a wide cross section of Canadian folk art.  The text seemed excellent at times, but with long winded sentences at other times, making for a bit of an uneven read.  However, the overall message was there and it was a good read overall.  I enjoyed the few hooked rugs photos that were included as well.

Another book I am currently looking at is “Hooked on Cats” by Joan Moshimer.  The rugs in the photos are beautiful!  She uses Cushing’s Perfection dyes to dye wool for her rugs.  I don’t use Cushing’s, but my Majic Carpet and ProChem will work just fine.  Joan gives basic dyeing instructions in her book for onion skin dyeing, spot dyeing, dip dyeing, and for overdyeing.  An informative book with a lot of patterns in the back and a nice gallery of finished work.

In My Studio – Rug Hooking Classes

 

I had a great Introductory Rug Hooking class Saturday with a couple of wonderful women.  It was a good time getting to know each other while getting to know a new craft.

Next class is February 25th and is a Curves class that teaches how to hook curves, circles, letters, and backgrounds. If we have time we’ll learn to hook bubbles too.  I have space for two more students in that class.  Class runs on Saturdays from 1:30 – 3:30 PM at my studio and requires you bring basic equipment and very basic knowledge of rug hooking (ie. how to hook a straight line and points).  I will provide a fibre kit for you to hook – “Beauty”, as seen above.  The pattern will be slightly enlarged at 7.5″ x 8″ to make it easier for beginners to hook.  You will be learning how to transfer a pattern to backing as well.

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I finished scan reading “Combining Rug Hooking & Braiding” by McDermet, Manges, and Tobias.  It has detailed instructions for creating beautiful braided edges and rugs, as well as instructions for rug hooking.  Excellent job ladies!  I highly recommend this book for people interested in adding braiding to their repertoire of techniques.

I also scan read “The Rug Hook Book” by Thom Boswell.  It has a good section on the history, followed by samples of work from well known rug hookers.  He then gives explicit directions on what you need and what to do.  The rest of the book contains patterns you can copy and hook.  This is a good book for beginner to intermediate rug hookers.

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As for this week’s plans…

  • back in my studio hooking on “Moss”,
  • working on more ideas for the website,
  • uploading more product on the website,
  • preparing for the Curves class on the 25th,
  • writing more class outlines, and,
  • now it’s February, it’s time I got a move on and developed my business plan for the year!

Hope everyone is having a great day today! Enjoy your week! 🙂

 

Weekly Review

Spent some time preparing for my class of beginners on Saturday.  Have the table all set and ready to go! 🙂

I also spent time writing the outline for a design class.

Finished reading “Ageless Entrepreneur” by Fred Dawkins.  A good book told in narrative style.  It turned out the emphasis was on creating businesses to support startups.  It encouraged young and old to work together to build off the strengths of each age group, and to take away the weaknesses of each age group.  I know from first hand experience that this is a good idea.  The tech knowledge of the younger generation has been a great help to me.  And their enthusiasm to get things done has really lifted my spirits.   I love working with them!   A good and easy read.

 

Weekly Review

I just finished reading Michael Bird’s “Canadian Folk Art: Old Ways in a New Land”.  It’s a good brief introduction to Canadian folk art, complete with wonderful glossy paged photos of some nice examples.  Now I’ve moved onto a much thicker book “Canadian Folk Art to 1950” by John Fleming and Michael Rowan.  I’m really enjoying it too, but taking it a bit slower.  There is a lot to digest in this one.

I also found another book at the library entitled “Combining Rug Hooking & Braiding” by Kris McDermet, Christine Manges, and Dianne Tobias.  What a feast for the eyes!  I had no idea you could do the things with braiding that were done for that book!  Some beautiful examples of work. There are also detailed descriptions and explanations as to how to achieve the many different looks.  I plan on delving a bit deeper into the book this coming week.

Other than that I continue to work on rewriting my course syllabuses.  If you’ve checked the menu at the top of the page you’ll notice there is a tab for classes.  If you are interested in a class, but aren’t sure, be sure to contact me for further information.  I can give you an idea of the topics covered in each class.

I’ve also been hooking more on “Moss” this week.

For those of you waiting to see if my shipping has been sorted out yet, it has.  It is now safe and secure to pay and have items shipped across Canada and the USA, including Hawaii and Alaska.

I am thoroughly enjoying the work of my website developer and delighted she has sorted out my shipping mess for me.  Stay tuned for further changes/additions to the website.

Weekly Review

I have a copy of Kris Miller’s “Introduction to Rug Hooking” in my hands today.  I found it at our local library.  It’s a great book Kris!  Thank-you for putting the essentials of rug hooking so well in words and photos.  If you’re a beginner I highly encourage you to check out your local library and see if you can find Kris’ book.  If not, check Amazon or her website – Spruce Ridge Studios.  Kris covers history, tools, materials, and techniques in her book.  A very clear description and a great read.  Thanks for writing it Kris!

Had an interesting week business wise.  I wrote up two of the ten courses rather quickly.  But then realized I had given one of my crucial books for developing my Finishing 201 course away!  Hmmm…I’m in the process of re-purchasing that.  I am also halfway done rewriting the From Start to Finish course.

I decided that, what with this situation and taking three online courses at the moment, I needed outside help with my website.  So I hired a website developer to look things over and come at me with ideas.  She did.  We talked for over an hour.  She has some great ideas.  I look forward to seeing the changes that will make my website more functional and appealing.  Please note, the first thing she did was to make the site fully secure.

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UPCOMING CLASS!!!

I am offering an Introductory Rug Hooking class on Feb. 11th, from 1:30-3:30 PM here in Regina, SK, Canada.  I have one space left.  If you’re interested contact me by Monday, Jan. 30th, and I can give you further details.

This two hour class covers a lot of ground.  The primary goal is to teach you simple rug hooking of straight lines and points.  The secondary goal is to give you some time trying out different supplies and materials and seeing what you like to use best before buying.  We’ll also be talking a bit about the history of rug hooking, different tools and materials, where to find them, how to prepare a backing for hooking, and a simple way to finish  your piece.

You use my tools and equipment for the class.  If you want to buy afterwards you can, but you don’t have to purchase from me.  The class costs $75 CAD + the kit costs $25 CAD.  The kit is a 6″ square star mat that can be used as a home decoration item.  You can find samples here.  You have a choice of two of three colors (red, green, and yellow) for the mat – one for the background and one for the star.

These classes are full of learning and fun.  Let me know if you’re interested and come to learn how to rug hook!

New Laptops in the House!

It’s been a busy week this week.  Tuesday Hubby and I finally had enough of malfunctioning laptops and went out and replaced our old ones.  We’ve been setting up new ones and transferring data ever since.  I am still working on transferring my photos.

Things are complicated as I’ve moved from the Mac platform to the PC.  I am much happier with the shift for two key reasons:

  1. I can finally find all my files again and see everything clearly at once.  No more guessing or using search to find out where Mac put things.
  2. It’s bigger and better for a cheaper price.

The one drawback is the screen colors.  It’s an ASUS and I can’t get the color and definition I’d like, even though I’ve reset the screen resolution to the highest level.  I’ve been told I can mess with the way the colors show, but I haven’t explored that yet.

What this does tell me is that other people using different screens and monitors are not always seeing the bright colors in my work!  The vagaries of shopping by internet I suppose.  Everything is looking greyed on my screen currently.  I hope this is not the case with my followers in cyberland.

In-between all that I did manage to upload more swatches for the website shop.

I’ve also been reading “Canadian Folk Art to 1950”.  It’s an interesting read.  The photos are good too.  When I get further into it, I’ll give a proper review.

Hope everyone has a great weekend.

Cheers,
Jean

Weekly Review

It’s been mostly a week of planning for the new year.  I have a list of goals a page long that need some editing and narrowing to focus on what’s really important for the year.

A little website housekeeping.  I discovered the links under the “Recipes” tab were not working.  I sorted that out yesterday and the links now work.

I posted more wall hangings on the site for sale and I’ve started posting plaid swatches.  Keep your eye open for interesting swatches.  I’ll be posting more over the weekend and into next week.

I have also been searching glossy picture books for inspiration.  The latest one is “500 Art Quilts: an inspiring collection of contemporary work” by Ray Hemachandra and Julie Hale.  It’s a delicious repository of quilt photographs.  Loved the book, loved the photography.  Lots of color combination and design ideas there.  I have a lot to think about and do to design some new work.

Talk to you all on Monday!

 

 

Weekly Review

I am late posting again.  It’s been a wild day.  My final lessons and final exams came in for my online courses.  I had Christmas presents to finish buying this morning and afternoon.  We ended up dealing with more health insurance stuff this morning.  It was unplanned for, but necessary.

However, despite all that…this week I have been accomplishing a lot of behind the scenes work on my website and old blog.  I finally have the old blog where it’s going to be for the next while.  I’ll slowly be deleting old posts off it.  If you are looking for something in particular, the old posts are here now.  Use the search feature to find it.

I’ve also managed to upload a fair bit of product to the website shop.  I still have more to go.

I did finish reading/browsing through “Create Your Own Website the Easy Way” by Alannah Moore.  It is a good outline and framework for creating a website, but I’ve come to the conclusion there is no “Easy Way” when it comes to creating websites.

I did not have a chance to work on “Moss”, and I certainly did not have time or space to work on designing new wall hangings.  There will definitely be changes in the new year…

WIP Thursday

Working on several things today.  I’m back working on the website.  The above book, “Create Your Own Website the Easy Way”, by Alannah Moore, has been very helpful for setting out a framework to work within.

I am slowly deleting most of the posts from the old blog.  I’ll leave the last year up there, but otherwise it’s all found on the new website blog.  And as 2017 progresses I will be deleting more of the old posts, until there is nothing left there.

In the process of doing the new website up I am rethinking my approach to my blog.  I find I am spending a lot of time writing and thinking about what to write and taking photos.  In the new year expect to see some changes to the blog.

I have not done any rug hooking this week, and that is part of why there will be changes to the blog in the new year.  It has also largely been due to Christmas events and preparations, and doctors appointments.  I am in the last week for my two online courses, which did not help either.  I am hoping to finish them by the end of the weekend.

Hubby and I have been going through the girls’ old schoolwork and deciding what to toss and what to keep.  They are 29 and 32 now.  They don’t want it.  I found an old watercolor by my youngest I’m going to try using as a desktop picture on my laptop.