Fun and Games!

Fun and Games!

We had a great week this week.  From celebrating Lunar New Year last Friday to playing games with friends.  We also have been getting outdoors more, which makes a huge difference in our dispositions.  We’ve had some snowfall cover the icy sidewalks and streets so we can walk on them again, albeit carefully!

I’ve been updating my bullet journal and coming up with more efficient ways to use the paper.  I don’t like wasting paper. I’m in the process of preparing for March.

Creatively, I’ve been doing more colouring in my adult colouring book. I’ve also finished reading Deanne Fitzpatrick’s latest book, “Rug Hooking”, which was excellent, as usual.  And I found the art section of the DVDs in our branch of the library!

Today I watched “Art is a Mirror” – a look at an exhibit originally created and curated by Canadian artist Jeremie Giles.  It is about Canadian artists – who they were/are, and what they contributed to Canada. Most of the 72 paintings were purchased by a couple of teachers who show the paintings on occasion, particularly in school settings.  The DVD was produced in 2007, so things may have changed.  It is a great way to study Canadian history through the eyes of Canadian artists.

The other DVDs I am checking out this week are: Simon Schama’s “Power of Art – Picasso” (episode 7), “Understanding Art – Baroque & Rococo”, and “Art 21 – season 7”. “Art 21” covers a wide range of artists from the USA to Sweden, Germany, and Mexico. Should be fun!  If I can’t hook right now, I can read and immerse myself in art regardless!

 

Weekly Review

Happy Lunar New Year!

Hi all.  Not much creative happening this week.  We’ve been visiting a lot with friends.  We’re still busy packing and selling stuff.  Hubby is repairing the walls and ceiling in the bathroom.  When we had our kitchen renovated in 2014 we had the house leveled.  The result has been the development of cracks in our plaster walls and ceilings.  We want everything fixed for painting and sale of the house.  Current deadline has been shifted to May 21st, when we have a major festival in our neighborhood.  Lots of foot traffic to see a ”For Sale” sign.

I did get out and buy a new waterproof down jacket for myself this week.  It was on sale and the zipper on my previous one bit the dust.  I may have the zipper replaced come spring.  We’ll see.  My previous jacket is light colored and I can’t get some of the dirt out of it, despite three washings in special down wash.  It just may become my ‘about the yard’ jacket for winter.

Today we are preparing to celebrate Lunar New Year with some Asian friends.  Our Chinese boarder is taking me shopping for Chinese ingredients.  Then one of his friends and some Korean friends of ours are coming over to celebrate. I hope everyone has a great weekend!  Talk to you all later… 🙂

Weekly Review – Happenings

Weekly Review – Happenings

Hi everyone!  It’s been a busy week.  We’ve had three rounds of company that we thoroughly enjoyed for three days of the week.  We are getting very good at playing card and board games with people.

I’ve been baking and cleaning.  Plus we’ve been decluttering, listing items online, and selling them.

I’ve also been preparing my bullet journal for the next few months.  I don’t think I’ll have much time in April or May, so I’m setting it up ahead of time.  I also am setting up March now.  I’m keeping it very simple.  The one exception I made was to color the heart design above from an adult coloring book, to tape over a major mistake in my journal.  It’s my one soul creative endeavor this past week.

We revised our plan for moving to extend our time preparing for the move by a month.  We decided that our weather was just too cold to do work in March on the house, and particularly the outside of the house.  So we are currently planning to have the house up for sale by May 21st.  We’ll see if we meet the revised deadline.

Why May 21st?  It’s the beginning of a week long festival that draws thousands of people to our neighborhood on foot and by car.  It would be nice to have a “For Sale” sign on the front lawn during that time.

Hubby is busy patching walls at the moment.  The walls were fine until we had the house leveled before we had the kitchen renovated in 2014.  Since then fine cracks have appeared in the plaster walls in different places.  So there is need for some repair work and painting.  Hubby thinks he can do it all.  I’m a bit nervous about him doing it in a timely fashion, but I know he’ll do an excellent job of it.  If push comes to shove, we’ll call in help to finish up.

We also have a front entry to finish off, and floors to refinish.  That’s the inside.  Not sure what to do about the outside.  We’d like to replace one fence, and redo 75 year old parging on the outside of the foundation, but don’t know if there will be time.

Our weekend plans are to go to a party, and check out the church annual meeting. And sell more stuff. 🙂  Talk to you all next week! 🙂

 

Weekly Review

I had a great week and managed to complete almost everything on my list.

  • I hooked more on “Prairie Sky – Altocumulus”.  I hope to work more on it today.
  • I posted the remaining old patterns for sale on my Facebook page – JLT Studios.
  • I added some 6″ square Prairie Sky wall hangings for sale to my website. They sell for $60 each + shipping.
  • I finished cutting up plaids and checks into #6 wide strips for sale for rug hookers.  They are sold in 1/2 pound bags for $20 each bag + shipping. I will be posting them on the website soon.
  • I am working on my mini-portfolio book today.
  • I am sewing on the hanging sleeve for “Wascana Creek – Study” today.
  • And finally, yes, I found my file folders for my classes!

 

Plaid and check wool strips cut to #6 width, packed in half pound bags and ready for sale.

 

Some of these patterns are available on the website now, and some have yet to be listed.  Look for these patterns to be available on the website soon.  They are old patterns purchased long ago (about 20 years ago) and on old burlap.  It is suggested people trace them on Red Dot and re-draw them on new backing before hooking them.  These are not my own original patterns, but the patterns of a few very talented rug hooking artists from the past.

 

 

Be sure to check out the website for new product this coming week!

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 – Moss, and other things…

Hi everyone!  I’ve been working more on “Moss” this week.  Not much, but some.  I might have just enough of the bright green to finish it.  It is looking better now more of it is done.  I might do a few corrections on it, but mostly that will be to correct the values in the piece.

I’ve been busy preparing for the Curves class this weekend.  I have everything ready for tomorrow.  Here’s hoping we have a great time learning to hook and everything goes smoothly.

 

I’ve also been spending time working on the From Start to Finish class for March (Saturdays 1:30-3:30 PM), and putting together the kit for it.  This is a four week class that includes instruction and materials for an 18″ x 18″ wall hanging or smaller, for $300CAD.  It starts with  idea finding, designing, transferring it to backing, colour planning, hooking, and finishing.  I still have room for two more students if anyone is interested.   Contact me by Monday Feb. 27th using the form below.

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.

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

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

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…

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

Hi everyone!  Hope you had a productive and good week.  I’ve been busy with company, creating a gift list for friends, Christmas shopping, wrapping gifts, mailing gifts, writing Christmas cards, and generally being side tracked from setting up my website.

There are a few changes to my blog.  I learned how to upload a video.  That is good.  I’m still trying to figure out the best way to do things.  Please let me know if you have any troubles accessing anything on the site.  Your feedback is valued.

I did manage to hook briefly on “Moss”, but very briefly.  It’s not worthy of another photo just yet.

I also finished reading “Everyone’s an Artist” by Tite, et al.  It is a good little book that encourages people who think they aren’t creative to look again.  Everyone is or can be creative in some way.  It proceeds to outline different ways to be creative using characteristics of artists.

I hope everyone has a great weekend!

 

WIP Thursday & Weekly Review

WIP Thursday & Weekly Review

knit-cellular-baby-blanket-1

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.

poppy

Weekly Review

Weekly Review

creek-walk-1-10

The sky yesterday on our walk.  Love those clouds!

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!

 

Weekly Review

A busy week.  I was fighting a cold.  Hubby’s first full week of retirement at home.  What did I get done?

  • Mailed greeting cards to the SCC Boutique.
  • Some fibre picked out for more bundles.
  • Some knitting.
  • Some photography.
  • Some cooking.
  • Lots of trying to learn Korean.
  • Lots of catching up with friends.
  • Lots of reading.

Time to refocus and reorganize.  I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Weekly Review

cranberry-red-bundle

Cranberry Red Fiber Bundle – wool and silk

Well this is kinda a weekly review.  Let’s face it, we didn’t get home till Tuesday evening.  Still, I did manage to knit on my baby blanket.  I’ve finished the pattern area and am on the final 3″ of ribbing before casting off, blocking, and donating to the local thrift store.

I also hooked more on “Moss”. 

And I’ve made a few bundles of fiber for sale.  Check out my Etsy shop to see them.  They’ll be selling for $25 CAD each plus shipping of $15 each.  They are a mix of silk and wool fabric and yarns.  There is at least one color coordinated plaid in each bundle as well.

Aside from that I tried my first video blog.  I’m going to have to figure out a different way to do it.  The file was way too big for WordPress and in the wrong form.  Had to convert from .m4v to .mp4.  Also the wrong format for YouTube.  I have a lot to learn about filming yet.  I also need a proper video editing program.  I have to decide if I’m going to shell out money for this or see if there is an open source program available.

I put holds on more library books related to website development.  And picked up “WordPress Web Design for Dummies” at Chapter’s last night.

I also listed items on Etsy.  More will be coming next week.

Weekly Review

I did hook a bit on “Moss”.  I fixed some of the values on the moss, both in the shaded moss and the area where the sunlit moss hit the background.  Looking a bit better now.

Mostly I’ve been working on Hubby’s retirement this week.  Lots of meetings, phone calls, and emails about insurance still.

I’ve been spending time planning for the next year already.  This year was kind of a write off, what with Hubby’s retirement.  Next year we have a big trip coming up…a trip to South Korea!  Looking forward to all kinds of inspiration from that, and madly deleting photos and videos from my camera, iPad, and laptop to make room for more.  I’m getting close to full on the camera and laptop.

Spent some time reconnecting with friends.  I think Hubby is surprised by how busy I am.  I haven’t talked to my friends much for about 3 weeks due to dealing with retirement issues.  We’re still dealing with them, so I’m just taking time out for a fun break.  I am hoping after our trip that things will calm down a bit.

Our trip.  We’re off on another 10+ day road trip to Alberta again – checking in with family and distributing garden produce. We’re doing the Hwy 1 Studio Tour tomorrow, on our way to Calgary.  Then eventually we’ll head north through Red Deer to Edmonton.  Hope to post here periodically.

Have a great weekend everyone! 🙂

 

 

 

Weekly Review…

chocolate-bin

Hi all.  It was another busy week.  We saw another couple of insurance brokers, had the cleaner in for a couple hours, ran a mess of errands, and visited with friends and co-workers at Hubby’s retirement party.  A big shout out to the people who made it a very successful get together!  Hubby really enjoyed himself, and so did I.  We came home laden with chocolate, his chosen theme for the party.  🙂

I did manage to hook a bit, a very little bit, on “Moss”.  My friend stopped by with not one, but two fleeces!  One is dirty and needs cleaning.  The other is perfectly clean and coarse.  I’ll try to spin it and see if it can be used for rug hooking.

She also dropped off a gorgeous piece of velour upholstery fabric.  I have no use for it, but I’m thinking what might be the best thing to do.  It’s creased and faded in spots where it was folded.  I’ve called in another friend to assess the situation and see what can be done with it.

Hoping to get back to more hooking next week. 🙂

 

Weekly Review

WIP African Dream - 1

Well I did settle down some yesterday and finish the yellow and red band in African Dream.  But to be truthful, I was busy with a friend and generally taking a break.

I did get up in my sewing/craft room and sort through some files.  I made piles for recycle, shred, and “move to another location”.  Some of it shouldn’t have been in my sewing room.

This week wasn’t a stellar week for rug hooking, but it was for re-organization.  I figure I cleared off 12 linear feet of the storage unit in the sewing/craft room.  This weekend we’ll be hauling stuff to local charities.

I’ve been chatting with people who think I should keep that storage unit and not replace it with cabinets with doors.  I’m thinking.  It’s a big heavy clunker that separates between the top and the base.  But it’s 8′ long and very difficult to get around the turn in the stairs at the bottom and the tight corner of the landing at the top of the stairs.  Hubby has decided it’s coming out in pieces if it has to be moved.

Hope everyone has a great day and weekend.  We celebrate every Friday with pizza night.  Looking forward to a simple meal to prepare tonight…frozen pizzas. 🙂

Weekly Review

Hi everyone.  This week has been a mixed bag.  I hooked more on African Dream.  I am excited to almost be finished.

I also prepared Sprouts, Dancing Tree, and Blue-eyed Grass for exhibit and sale.  Hubby was off to buy supplies for packing them yesterday but had no luck.  However he was given the name of another outfit in town that might have a greater variety of box sizes to help me.  I’m glad I started the process early.  With Hubby taking our only car to work every day, it makes it difficult to run errands.

And, last but not least, I produced this 20 minute video of my craft room/sewing room. It is a tour showing some organization ideas for people to consider when developing their own home studios.  It is not a professional video.  It was all shot at one time.  I do not know how to edit a video on this computer, and my attempts to use QuickTime did not proceed well at all.  I gave up.  If anyone knows of an easy to learn video editing software that is free or next to it, please let me know.  I’m operating on a Mac currently, but plan on switching back to a PC platform this fall sometime.

Depending on the reaction to my sewing room video I will decide if I want to go to the effort of cleaning up my rug hooking studio and doing a video of it.  To be truthful, my rug hooking area is so small at 8′ x 14′ that I hardly think it’s worth a video.  But my online followers might want to know where I work and what I use.  Besides, it will just be a shorter video! 🙂

I hope everyone has a great weekend!  See you next week! 🙂

Weekly Review

We’re getting down to the wire with Hubby’s impending retirement folks!  I spent a lot of time yesterday crunching numbers and dealing with health insurance.  His retirement starts October 1st.  I’m looking forward to it!

I also took the opportunity to whack away at my business email some more.  Only 125 more emails to sort through!

I did manage to hook some on African Dream.  Hoping to finish it by the end of this month.  It will only have taken three months instead of the one I thought it would.  Granted I took the equivalent of a two week vacation in there.  But truthfully, I’ve been so busy with retirement planning I have not been doing much hooking.

I worked on my Gale courses.  Today I want to catch up on my website development course.

That’s it for me today!  How about you?  What’s everyone up to?

Weekly Review

IMG_1324

Music on vacation. 🙂

This week it’s been all I can do to catch up on my online courses.  Finally caught up yesterday afternoon…and two new lessons came out today!  I’ll be working on them this weekend.

I knit some on the baby blanket this week.

And I hooked a bit more on African Dream.

I browsed through one of the Sally Melville books I bought on vacation.

I did not get to culling my business emails.

Have a great day everyone! 🙂

Weekly Review

Good morning everyone!  It’s been a busy week here.  I’ve had company since Tuesday.  They leave Sunday.  It’s been fun showing them around and doing things with them.  I love sharing our city with visitors!

I’ve started two more online Gale courses: one in communications and one in building a website with a shopping cart.  So far so good.

I managed some hooking on African Dream, but not a lot. I do have the strips cut for most of the finishing though.  Actually, I’m still pulling heavily from my pile of leftover worms from other projects.

A friend broke her foot and today I am going to be cooking some meals for her and her hubby.

I have a long list of things to do today, so I better get at it!  Have a great weekend everyone! 🙂

Week in Review

I have been working on African Dream off and on this week.

I’ve also been working with the Saskatchewan Crafts Council on a brochure for my work.

Plus I am waiting to hear if any of my newer pieces are going to be accepted for the Saskatoon Art & Craft Fair this fall.  I don’t expect to hear about that for a while though.  Ideally I’d have African Dream finished and entered for jurying.

I received another email from Parallax, a large European art fair organization.  They keep asking if I want to show and/or sell my work in Chelsea Gardens, London, England.  I’d love to!  But it is quite expensive to get it over there and back.  Plus the timeline is a little short for all the red tape and work that needs to be done.  We also have other plans for the fall at the moment, and I don’t need the added stress of shipping work overseas.

I also received an invite to submit to a large art fair in Vancouver.  I think it’s called the Urban Arts Festival?  Unfortunately that was too short notice –about two weeks!  Would love to do that another year too.

It’s reached the point where I need a good six months lead time before I can commit to anything.  At least for now.  Hopefully next year will be better.  It’s not that my professional life is busy.  It’s that I am going through a lot of changes in my personal life the next six months.  Hubby is thinking of retiring in that time frame, and I want to keep our schedule light to accommodate any changes and bureaucratic red tape we might need to go through during that time.  And I know there’s quite a bit of it coming up.

Well that’s it for this week!  Hope everyone has a good weekend.  We’re having lovely weather here.  I’m declaring it yard work weekend. 🙂

 

Weekly Review

I accomplished some goals this week, for a wonder.  It is summertime for me, so I’ve been taking time off to visit with friends and family.

My main goal of getting my email under control was accomplished this week.  At least for one email account…the big one with lots of email.  I have a second, smaller email account to work on next week.

I also had fun working on African Dream.  And I knit some on the cellular baby blanket.

I did not work on posting wall hangings on Etsy for sale…yet.  I may prepare some listings today, but will not post them till next week.

I also worked on my two free online courses.  I signed up for two more today: one on developing a proper website with shopping cart, etc.  And one on publishing e-books.  It seems my recipes are popular on the blog, and I do have a previous gluten free, dairy free, sugar free cookbook I created a few years ago.  It has been making the rounds of my friends and church members.  Time to make it available online I think.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!