I can’t believe it’s been a whole month since I wrote a blog post! I managed to contract another virus and was sick for all of March as well. April was spent furiously playing catchup.
We picked out new carpet for the basement, had the carpet contractor in, only to discover we had a damp corner in the basement. That is not unusual with a house over 90 years old. So we called in a basement contractor to look at it. They said we need a sump pump and are installing one as I write this.
After the sump pump is installed Hubby has some more wall repair and painting to do before the carpet contractor arrives with the new carpet early May. There should be no problem with that timeline…we hope. Two days after the carpet is laid everything is put into storage. We managed to rent a storage locker already for the beginning of May. Hopefully before the day everything goes into storage we will be taking loads to donation locations across the city.
As for creative projects, nothing has been happening. I have been busy packaging up wool and selling it to people, but that’s about it.
I’ve also been busy watching far too many YouTube videos on moving, selling and buying houses, the area we plan to move to, and budget binders (which we’re going to need due to the higher cost of living where we’re going!). It’s been a very exciting time.
Health-wise things seem to be looking up. I’m feeling much better. Unfortunately the medical system is under a great deal of stress in the area I’m moving to. I will need a family doctor almost immediately and there are none to be found. I have two leads and I hope and pray one of them pans out.
I’m growing weary of living out of boxes. We first packed up last February (2018) and have been living out of them ever since. I can hardly wait to be in a new place with our reduced possessions in their rightful places. I miss having a “home”.
We had a great Easter this year and hope all of you did too. I’ve got to get back to work selling things here. Enjoy spring everyone!
Hello everyone. Despite being thwarted by a day long power outage on Tuesday I was able to update my shop section of the website by Thursday. You will notice a few changes. For one, I’ve taken all the plaids to zero inventory because I appear to have lost them somewhere…in a moving box no doubt…somewhere…
Secondly, I have listed more fiber bundles for sale – a Lemon Yellow and a Gold bundle. Right now there are five of each, with a variety of wool fabric and wool and silk yarns in each one. Each bundle has five pieces of wool fabric at least 3.5″ x 12″ (up to 5″ x 14″) and five 5 yard pieces of wool/silk yarn or roving of different types for texture. No two bundles are exactly the same, but the colorway is the same. I plan to create more fiber bundles in the near future.
The past week or so I’ve been busy organizing my knitting and actually knitting. I’ve knit two beanies – one a cream colored beanie and one a hand dyed variegated brown wool beanie – and am currently working on a hand dyed variegated brown wool neck warmer. I’ll update you later. I have a lot of knitting to do before Christmas!
Also, I seem to be working on a new WordPress platform that is giving me a headache. Below are some knitting photos I wanted to share with you, but they seem to permanently be stuck on their sides, despite my best efforts to rotate them so they are right side up! I will continue to work on this issue in hopes of sharing more photos. Otherwise photos could become sparse on my blog.
I have a full weekend planned. I hope my readers are enjoying the season. Thanks for reading.
We worked a lot on decluttering the house last week. Two carloads of stuff went to the charity shops. I’ve been selling our old stuff like crazy online. I’ve had friends come pick through my stuff too. It feels good to see others get excited about my cast offs and to know they will give them new life.
Saturday we drove up to Saskatoon to pick up my wall hangings and cards from the Saskatchewan Craft Council Fine Craft Boutique. I am no longer a member of the Craft Council, nor sell my work through them. From now on anyone wanting a piece of my work will have to purchase through this website.
I’ve been contemplating what to do for creative work these days. I can’t get into my rug hooking studio, let alone pull a project out to work on. I am unhappy with a knitting project I worked on last fall, and am procrastinating finishing it as a result. I do have a needlepoint project I’m thinking of pulling out. I need a bigger frame than I have to put it on. Hmm…time to get creative. I really don’t want to buy anything more specifically for this project.
As well as pondering my creative life at the moment and decluttering for the move ahead, I have been busy trying out Ryder Carroll’s bullet journal system. So far I’m impressed. It is meeting my needs. Thanks for sharing Ryder! I am specifically figuring out how to tailor the system to a retirement lifestyle and our move.
This week will be more decluttering, as well as company for awhile. Hope everyone has a great week!
Hi everyone. This week I’ve been busy dyeing fibre in-between being sick with a cold. I must admit, the humidity from the dye pot is soothing on my system. I’ve been opening the window a bit to air out the place. Right now our temperatures are well above freezing. Hopefully tomorrow I can do some more dyeing.
I’ve embarked on a hooked wall hanging project based on our South Korean trip that uses different colors and a different palette than I’m used to using. I don’t have those colors in my stash. Consequently there is a lot of dyeing to do. I am only about half done. So far I have dyed silk, wool, and nylon. Also yarn and fabric in both silk and wool, and some old nylons. I am getting some lovely mid-tone colors.
I had a busy day today, so a late post. I sold a wood pile among other things! I sold some sewing patterns and an old wood gardening tray as well, and I posted some jewelry and china online for sale.
I also had the pleasure of meeting a new patron. She stopped by to deliver a cheque for a piece she tried to purchase online. There seemed to be difficulties with PayPal not recognizing my correct email address. My web developer and I sorted that out. But as the buyer was local, I just emailed her and suggested dropping by the studio to pay me the money owed.
She dropped by this afternoon and we had a wonderful chat about my work, whether I would work on commission (I will, given the right situation), what the biggest size is that I make and why (2′ x 5′ because of my frame size), and to just admire my work. In the end she purchased two of my larger pieces – “Wascana Creek” and “The Barn”. I told her the story behind each piece. She was delighted.
Both pieces are based on smaller plein air pieces. “Wascana Creek” was hooked on a local man-made island called “Boreal Island”. It’s near a friend’s place and for part of the hooking of the plein air piece I had her and her dog’s company. The final studio piece was hooked at home in my studio. It is hooked from home spun yarn and wool and silk fibers on primitive linen backing. I hand dye most of my fiber.
“The Barn” is at The Crossings on the edge of Grasslands National Park. It’s been turned into a picnic shelter now. You can drive around the dugout and go into the paddock, which is where the barn is, park your car, and picnic at the picnic tables in the barn. The Crossings has rooms for rent above their old garage (now turned laundry and maintenance area for the nearby campground). I hooked “The Barn” plein air piece from a second floor window, as the mosquitoes were too thick to sit on the balcony and hook. Once again the finished piece was hooked in my studio.
I really enjoyed visiting with my new patron and was pleased to know my work would be hanging alongside the likes of Allen Sapp!
This week’s plan is to work more on “Escapees”. I may be planning a few larger prairie sky pieces as well. I have noticed an interest in the larger pieces among people in general.
Hi everyone! I’m up early this morning, for a wonder. I wasn’t in bed till after midnight. I suspect an afternoon rest will be in order! Mosaic was great though! Both for fun and inspiration. The food was excellent too.
I finished my little “Prairie Sky – Cirrus” wall hanging and am onto a “Prairie Sky – Altocumulus” one. I have a lot of bits and pieces of linen backing that need to be used up. They will most likely become ornaments and small wall hangings.
I’ve also managed to take photos of all the old patterns I have and will post those on my website and Facebook page for sale.
I made a list of things that need to be done in my little studio to finish up loose ends. I’ll be working on those gradually.
I’ve also been working on creating a mini-portfolio photo book of my work to take to shows and show galleries. It’s finally reached the point where I can’t take all my work with me. So this serves as a detailed look at my development as an artist and shows potential patrons the width and depth of my style.
Today I’m looking forward to listing items online for sale, resting, enjoying company, and another evening at Mosaic. Have a great weekend everyone! 🙂
I’m back in my studio after sale day at the Cathedral Village Arts Festival Street Fair. I actually sold well and had lots of inquiries, but the wind was gusting so badly in the afternoon we had to close up shop early. Product was hitting the ground. That was not cool. So we packed it in and came home.
I’ll have to rethink my plans for next year. I’m thinking of doing another sale later in the year, after all the inclement weather we seem to get at the CVAF Street Fair. But we shall see. The cost of the other sales are quite high…over $200 for a small booth 10’x10’… I don’t know… Hubby and I are thinking of alternatives.
Meanwhile, if you were at the sale and planning to pick something up the last hour or so of it, you can contact me through email <firstname.lastname@example.org> or phone: 306-737-9950. If you’re from outside of Canada it’s best to contact me by email. We can arrange appointments for viewing rug hooking, and purchasing supplies, and materials. If you are interested in signing up for classes you can check out my classes page here on the website and send me a note through the contact form at the bottom.
I managed to start “Escapees”, my nasturtium wall hanging, at the Street Fair, but honestly the wind was so bad I spent most of my time holding up the display, especially in the afternoon. Still, I have some of it picked out and ready to go. I’m nailing down more colours right now.
After coming home and putting away sale stuff, I decided a good cleaning out of the studio was in order. I’ve spent the last two days on that. I have a huge garbage bag of stuff to get rid of either by selling or donating, but the bulk of it is done. I don’t know. I use a lot of fibre and sell a fair bit, but it seems like the stuff multiplies! My shelves are full to bursting!
This week I’ll be cleaning more, and finishing up some odds and ends in the studio. I have a few wall hangings that need hanging sleeves, price tags, and to be uploaded to the website. I have some narrow strips that need to be cut and put into my extra stripettes bin for future hooking or sale.
I have company arriving the end of the week, and Thursday, Friday, and Saturday are the annual multicultural festival days in town – Mosaic. I hope to enjoy both. 🙂
I will be starting my wall hanging called “Escapees”. Come see the pattern and fibres! I’ll be selling greeting cards for $5 each and ornaments and wall hangings from $25 up.
If anyone is interested in buying supplies or fibre for hooking you can either do so on this website in the shop area, or stop by the booth and we’ll make an appointment for you to come by the house, or take an order and mail it out to you.
I am currently charging $20/half pound of wool (approximately a half yard of wool yardage). It will be irregular shapes. If you want it cut, it will be another $5 on top of that. I only cut #6 width.
If you want silk and wool yarns and fibre it will be $25 uncut, and $30 cut. Again these are half pound bags.
Hope to see people at the Fair. It’s supposed to rain, so bring your umbrellas and rain coats!
I knuckled down yesterday and dyed some fibre for “Escapees”. I needed a variety of lighter greens. My stash is mostly blue greens at this point, and I have a lot of them. Might need to colour plan a wall hanging to use some of those up. I also need oranges and grays for “Escapees”, but I have the grays from a long time ago, and the oranges were dyed earlier this year.
My website has been up and down this past week. There seems to be irregularities with it. I have my web developer working on it.
I’m thinking of sorting through my leftover worms and offering some for sale in the near future. I’ve been thinking of doing a scrappy rug for some time, but now “Escapees” has come up and it will probably be a while before I start something else. I seem to produce leftover worms at an amazing rate!
I’ve finished designing the photo book for our South Korea trip. Hubby and I are “letting it sit” for a few days before we send it in to be printed. He may have extra photos and text to add. I’ve been impressed enough with the program from this company that I’ve decided to create a mini portfolio through them. It would be more like a look book – just a taste of my work. It’s much smaller than the large book we’re doing for our trip. The trip book is 12″ x 12″ and 145 pages long. The portfolio book will be 5″x7″ and 100 pages long…or thereabouts. Not entirely sure yet. First we’ll see if the trip book turns out okay.
In big news: I will be off August 7th – 12th to watch my niece swim in the Canada Games. This is a great achievement for her and we are extremely proud of her.
Below are some of the results of Dye Day in more detail. I’m loving the casserole dye jobs. The photos are showing more white than there really is on the fabric. That’s wool on the left and silk on the right.
I am busy preparing for our trip to South Korea in April. Looking forward to new scenery and meeting friends and new people. As a result I am tying up loose ends. I am busy hooking more on “Moss” and hope to finish the hooking before I go. I’m two thirds finished.
This week I finished preparing for the final From Start to Finish class tomorrow. I have to hook one more sample for me to demonstrate to my student, but that should not take long.
I spent this morning filling an ETSY order. Just to let people know, I’ll be shutting down my ETSY shop gradually this spring and summer. People will have to order from here on my website if they want my work, visit the SCC Fine Craft Boutique in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, or visit me in person at my studio (please contact me for an appointment). I will maintain my presence on LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook. But my main focus will be Facebook and here on www.jeanottosen.ca . I have nothing against Etsy. I am just trying to streamline my online business.
I will be changing things around on my blog for awhile to see what works for my readers. I have had a drop in readership since switching to the new blog. Not sure what the issue is, but it is a significant drop, so I will be messing with things to see if I can get it back up there.
Hubby and I walked over to the Art Gallery of Regina Salon Show and Sale opening night Wednesday evening. It was filled with people! The exhibit is really good this year. I encourage people to head over to the Neil Balkwill Civic Arts Centre to take a look. Afterwards we went to a nearby restaurant, La Bodega, for a decadent chocolate fondue for two and a cup of tea.
Hi everyone! This weekend we had a great time, both teaching a class and attending a multicultural festival that greatly inspired me. I didn’t get away unscathed. I found some inspiration to purchase!
The Buddhist temple paper cut was actually a gift from the ladies at the Chinese booth. There were some very delicate paper cuts available there. The watch was $5 and is actually a gorgeous bracelet. The Pashmina shawl has a wonderful paisley design I just couldn’t pass up. The bright green and pink fabric is handwoven by the Chakra people from Bangladesh. It is beautiful cloth! The lady selling it suggested I make a traditional skirt out of it. But I am hesitant to cut into it. It’s just gorgeous!
So that was my inspiration for this month.
In other news…
my class on Saturday went really well. My student and I colour planned a monochromatic grey, black, and white rug. Lest you think that’s easy, let me remind you that grey has many different coloured undertones. You have to have a good eye for shades and tints (value) to colour plan a grey rug properly. Other “colours” have the same issue. There are warm and cool versions of all colours. But some have more undertones than usual…black and grey for sure. At any rate, we got it done and she is off with lots of cut fibre to hook rug the next couple of weeks.
The Art Gallery of Regina Salon Show and Sale is coming up. This week I have to prepare and pack my pieces for the show. I’ll be taking them “Dancing Tree” and “Blue-Eyed Grass”.
I will be preparing for this coming Saturday’s class.
I will be hooking on “Moss”.
A reminder that after the end of March my next class will be May 6th and will be a Finishing class. May 13th is tentatively set as a design class. The Finishing class is 2 hours long, and the Design class is 3 hours long. Both Saturday afternoons. If you can’t make Saturday afternoon class and would like classes, feel free to contact me and we can arrange a mutually beneficial time for a class.
That’s the rug hooking plan so far this week. Hope everyone has a great week! Thanks for reading! 🙂
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.
Sorry for the late post folks. It’s been a busy day. Unexpected company and some running around town. I’ve been busy working on my website. I think I’m done transferring files from the old blog to the new. Next up is to post a few more items for sale. We’ll see how it goes next week.
Also been creating draft listings on Etsy and posting items for sale on Etsy in my JLT Studios shop.
I did manage to hook a bit more on “Moss”. I had a friend hold it up a distance away from me and decided the problem is values again. Seems if I have color issues it’s usually in the values.
I started knitting swatches for a sweater pattern I want to knit. A friend helped me wind two skeins into balls of wool yarn.
I had fun this evening at Nouveau Gallery’s 11th Anniversary Celebration! I love this gallery. If you’re ever in Regina I highly recommend it. They represent a variety of local artists working in a wide variety of different media and styles. Tonight’s work did not disappoint. It was wonderful!
Knit cellular baby blanket with lots of mistakes in it. In my defense I have to say the kinky yarn was not a good choice. As was my decision to knit it while visiting with friends. The yarn was the most problematic though. It was difficult to see mistakes until quite a ways after they happened. I figure it will be good enough for charity. I won’t be knitting that pattern again. Plus I think I’ll stick to straight knit and purl when I’m busy visiting.
Hi everyone! I am getting a lot done this week. No hooking on “Moss” yet, but the week isn’t over. 🙂
I did manage to finish knitting the cellular baby blanket. I’ll be blocking it soon I hope, and then donating it to charity.
I’ve been working on matching Certificates of Authenticity with all my finished hooked pieces larger than 6″ x 6″ that are original work.
I’ve been writing draft posts for my Etsy shop. Keep an eye out for more items for sale on Monday.
And I’ve been working on my website.
I’ll be taking tomorrow, Friday, off to help some friends and to remember those who have fought and died in war for Canada. I will be back on Monday.
Good morning everyone! I actually had a pretty good week this week, considering all the distractions in my life. I was able to package most of my wall hangings and add cup hooks for hanging them to the packages. Plus I was able to make a start with the certificates of authenticity.
I was also able to plan more of our trip to South Korea. I’ve booked a hotel room already…six months in advance. It seems hotel rooms go fast in Seoul. I was already running into challenges finding a decent one in a decent location for a decent price for five nights! Expedia kept raising prices on me and having disappearing deals every time I signed on. So I ended up booking through Booking.com.
Plus I continued to practice my Korean. I am at the point where I’m a bit discouraged I am not learning faster. I read it and it all sounds so familiar. But for the life of me I can’t remember how to say the words. I guess that is all part of being older and trying to learn a new language. I have three Korean friends who will be helping me over the weekend.
I am also continuing to work on my website.
Well it’s sunshiny here and I’m off for a walk. Hope everyone has a great day today!
I am almost finished the knit baby blanket! Only a few more rows to go! I want to try a new cast off method. I’ll be checking in with my friend about that.
As for “Moss”…I am decidedly unhappy with it and haven’t worked on it all week.
Instead I’ve been preparing wall hangings for sale on Etsy and working on my new website.
I did not get to the Certificates of Authenticity yesterday. So I will be working on those today. I did manage to get about 150 cup hooks into little plastic bags (2 each) and into the wall hanging packages.
I have spent a lot of time planning our trip and studying Korean.
This weekend I was busy with my Etsy shop. I uploaded more items for sale.
I was also busy on my new website. Still trying to figure out the shipping issues with WooCommerce. Seems they aren’t as cheap as they claim to be. I’ll be looking at other options this week.
Upcoming this week…
~ I plan to hook more on “Moss”.
~ I need to add cup hooks to the packages of wall hangings I am selling.
~ I need to sew a hanging sleeve on one of the wall hangings.
~ I need to take some photos of others before posting them on Etsy.
~ I need to fill out Certificates of Authenticity for most of the wall hangings.
~ And I need to photograph and load more fiber bundles for sale.
I doubt I’ll finish all this in one week, but I’ll make a stab at it. The Certificates of Authenticity will take some time to fill out. They are quite detailed and I have quite a number to do.
Well I hope everyone is off to a great start of a new week! Enjoy the nice fall weather and try not to eat too much candy then next couple of days.
I’ve been busy knitting on the cellular baby blanket. I was joking to some friends that there were so many mistakes in it it looked like a pattern! The pattern is going to be thrown out when I’m finished. I never could get it to work properly. Next time I’ll pick up some plain knitting to work on in the company of other people. It appears I cannot stay focused on a basic lace pattern. I’m going to block the blanket when it’s done, see how it looks, and then decide what to do with it. But I strongly suspect it will find its way to the local thrift store. Note to self: not all projects work out…and that’s okay.
I hooked a bit on “Moss” this week. I am not overly happy with the values I’ve chosen for different colors. I am trying not to go to the dye pot because I have so much fiber in the house already. I’ll hook a tad more on it and then take it off the frame on a nice sunny day in natural light to make some color decisions/revisions.
I’ve also been loading a lot of wall hangings on Etsy for sale. I started uploading Christmas wall hangings. I know. I’m a bit early. But I’m sitting beside a big tote of wall hangings and ornaments that have yet to be listed. It’s going to take a while.
I’ve also been making more fiber bundles and uploading them to Etsy.
And I’m working on my new website.
I think that’s enough “Works in Progress” for one week! Time to get busy on them. Talk to you all tomorrow. 🙂
A better title for this post might be News and Views. I received notice yesterday that my Etsy shop, JLT Studios, will be the featured shop on Etsy’s blog for the month of November. With that in mind, I will be posting more offerings on my Etsy shop between now and the end of November.
I’ve also been working on my own website, due to be up and running in January 2017.
I was going to post a recipe today, but have been pretty busy. I keep forgetting to take photos of food! How about a picture of kale growing on my patio…still! It’s looking really nice these days.
I haven’t hooked at all this week. But I have been knitting on the baby blanket. I can smell the end! Just need to knit 2″ more in ribbing and cast off.
I’ve been a bit preoccupied since Hubby retired the end of September. We’ve been running errands, on a trip to see extended family, and busy learning Korean. Yes, we are going to South Korea next spring. A friend invited us to meet her family and show us around her home country. We said “yes!”
So we’ve been busy planning immunizations, travel insurance, booking flights (there was a really good deal if you had Aeroplan), and learning Korean. At least I am learning some Korean. Hubby thinks they will all speak to him in English over there. He’s never traveled outside of North America.
I’ve been trying to think of fiber things to see and do in South Korea. Not coming up with much. I know they quilt and embroider. But I don’t know of any rug hookers in South Korea. There is a special cloth made from local plant materials on the west coast. But we will be focusing our visit on Seoul and the east coast I think. At least that’s the plans so far.
In rug hooking news: I sent more “Star Rug” blank greeting cards up to Saskatoon for the SCC Fine Craft Boutique. So if anyone is wanting any for Christmas they can contact the Boutique or me. I’m hoping to get back to making more bundles today. Lots of fun and inspiration in those. 🙂
Star Rug blank greeting card – $5 CAD
Other Christmas themed or winter themed cards people might be interested in purchasing are below:
Autumn Spot Dyed Wool Blanket – 7″ x 17″-18″ – $30 CAD for all three pieces, plus shipping. $15 CAD for one piece, plus shipping.
Look what went on Etsy for sale this weekend! Yes, I put up some of the spot dyed blanket I used for the background in “Rose Hips”. It is $30 CAD + shipping for the entire lot of three pieces. If you are interested in only one piece, which is 7″ x 17-18″, I will sell it for $15 + shipping.
I also put up these two dark green wool and silk bundles for sale for $25 CAD + shipping each.
This week I am continuing my hooking on “Moss”.
I also plan to make more bundles for sale.
I also plan to knit more on the cellular baby blanket at Crafting.
I am currently reading my way through “Professional Blogging for Dummies”. That will be followed by “WordPress Web Design for Dummies”. Hopefully, between the two of them I’ll be able to get a website up and running by the new year.