Monday, December 28, 2009

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Chenille Love

I warped up enough for two scarves ... this is the second in progress, with a substitution of the black for the dark blue in the weft. I was a little worried that the pattern would not show up at all after wetfinishing. In the end, the patterning is subtle, but still noticeable in both scarves. The pattern is an extended point shadow weave (not that I really understand what that means, exactly) from A Weaver's Book of 8-Shaft Patterns. Sett at 20 epi (elongated the pattern into a long diamond).
Scarf #1 after wetfinishing.
Scarves #1 and #2. The black weft greyed out the color... most noted when side by side or when examining the fringe.
And speaking of fringe. I'm not sure what I did wrong, because I twisted fringe exactly the same way with a previous scarf. It could be because I didn't hem stitch the start and finish or that the fringe was a couple of inches longer. I pulled out the worming, but I'm sure it will do the same thing again when washed again. Since I put Fray Check on the knots, I'm not even sure I can retwist them.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

How does your garden grow?

This year not so well. Guilty of outright neglect.
Next year will be better. Pinkie promise.
Right this very minute I am making a cold cucumber soup with fresh dill. Not from my garden, which has mostly never had veggies or herbs in it anyway. Unless you count the mint that threatened to take over the city. But still.
And I am trying these zucchini fritters from whipped to go along with.
(100 Proof Press (veggies), Herbarium or Leavenworth Jackson? (guano bag)
I cannot tell you how I ended up with a bag of dancing guano (that's bat ... fertilizer). Well, actually I can tell you how I ended up with it ... it came in a grab bag purchase. I don't think even I would willingly buy a stamp of a bag of dancing guano. It is kind of cute, though.
I cut the stamp outline and the shadow out with the Craft Robo.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Canon SELPHY ES40 Compact Photo Printer

Canon SELPHY ES40 Compact Photo Printer: "SELPHY ES40"
Why I am thinking about another photo printer is beyond me. While on vacation I managed to change the settings on my camera without realizing it, and all the way from New York to Cape Cod I took pictures that can only be printed out on a postage stamp.

From the Archives: Soft Block Carvings

Duke Ellington

The Tempest (sweet airs) - carved on one block, the instrument on the large surface and the bow on the side

The Arboretum (originally designed as a letterboxing stamp)

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Not Mastering the Art of French Cooking

Looking forward to seeing "Julie and Julia" after having read the book for book group this year.
When at the Smithsonian Museum of American History this summer we saw Julia's kitchen on display. It would no longer be possible to place a stick of butter, or any other tribute, actually in the kitchen. It's all behind plexiglass now.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

The 2009 Smithsonian Craft Show

Just a very few of the very amazing wearable art pieces shown at the Smithsonian Craft Show in 2009. From the fact sheet: "The Smithsonian Craft Show features 120 superb craft artists, each one reflecting the story of contemporary American craft in one of 12 categories: basketry, ceramics, decorative fiber, furniture, glass, jewelry, leather, metal, mixed media, jewelry, wearable art and wood. The individual artists or partnerships, including 44 first-time participants, are selected by a panel of 3 jurors, a new set each year, from over 1,300 applicants."

Turquoise Jacket/Scarf (handwoven complex twill in silk, merino wool, and rayon jacket, and handwoven and felted scarf in merino wool) and Blue Cool Squares (handwoven and felted merino wool jacket, handwoven silk and wool collapse weave scarf) -
by Patricia Palson, Contoocook, New Hampshire.

Detail: Firefall Euro Jacket - needlefelted merino wool
by Candiss Cole, Sedona Arizona.

These whimsical, organic, handfelted hats are by
Lauri Chambers, Nordland, Washington.

Friday, May 22, 2009

The Louet David Loom

It seemed serendipitous that I was musing about how a lot of the weaving drafts I was looking at in books required at least 8 shafts, (and I, alas, had only four) at the same time that I wandered into the basement of Lakeside Fibers during a spring sale. The store's owner(s) had decided to divest themselves of all weaving equipment and supplies and their demo looms were for sale. 
Kismet, right?
And so, the Louet David, in cherry, an 8-shaft, 10 treadle sinking-shed loom, joined the Harrisville in the sunroom. V-e-r-y tight quarters, but I made them fit, I think. Sort of.

The Harrisville Loom

Up into the light at last, with a warp that was meant to be a baby blanket for the child now graduated from college. I had to buy a new handle for the beams, and make a new bar for connecting the warp beam to the castle, but that was about it ...
This is a four shaft Harrisville Designs loom that I built from a kit. It has four treadles with direct tie-up, but if I ever felt the need I can evidently buy a conversion to make it six treadles.

I replaced many, many broken warp threads, but felt I owed it to the weaving gods to try to finish it.

Tied onto the the warp beam, but the replacement of so many threads caused this waterfall of tangled warp when finally ready. I cut off the last six inches or so... I didn't have enough weft for weaving the whole length anyway.

Started weaving and finished within two days. It's a waffle weave, though the waffle-ly part would be deeper with more shafts. The baby seemed pleased with it, though...

Thursday, April 30, 2009

April in Chicago

An overnight trip to the Chicago Art Institute and the Field Museum. We spent most of our time in the African and Asian wings.

We missed seeing the Pirates exhibit at the Field Musuem, but we plan to return in the fall.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Ode to Trader Joe's

(Came upon this on another blog and later find out it's called "If I Made A Commercial for Trader Joe's", created by Carl Willat and posted on YouTube. A nice tribute to a fine spot. Too bad it's a store that's not in the golden circle of travel time from my abode.)

Thursday, March 05, 2009

From the Archives: Fun with Art Stamps

Zettiology (flying creature, alpha, cloud),
100 Proof Press (buildings)

Ma Vinci's Reliquary (numbers), 100 Proof Press (ribbon)

ERA Graphics

Paula Best

hmmm... Redhead?

100 Proof Press (dancing elephant), Leavenworth Jackson (shell), Gumbo Graphics (cityscape), Stampscapes (stars)

Crazy Quilts and the Contemporary Crafter

I saved this article by Gayle Worland from the Sunday paper on March 1, because there were a few things that really resonated with me in the interview with Beverly Gordon (professor of textiles and apparel design at UW-Madison and the curator of this exhibit, "A Fairyland of Fabrics: The Victorian Crazy Quilt" )

She compares the craft of these women to present day scrapbooking (and that segues into other paper and fabric crafts), citing an emphasis on creativity, invention, and play, and the importance of "abundance" and "collecting" of material as part of what fuels the craft(s). There's also the intriguing aspect of collective motifs - themes or subjects that appeal to many of us who do the same kind of art and craft that are reflective of our time and cultures and interests.

I quite like this quote the article ends with:

"There's a sense that there's infinite possibilities with materials and making beautiful things ... It's about making something with little bits, the fascination of combinations, because essentially they are a collage."

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

More Artistamps

An homage to Wilson's in Door County, made to go with the postcard below. Just a cropped unedited photograph with text added. I think I had the pinhole perforator when I made this, but for some reason chose to use the old Fiskar's postage stamp edger instead. The perforator might have been buried under the leaf blower and other lawn-related junk as it lives in the garage right now.

A Wilson's hot fudge sundae (pencil/colored pencil, pen), with A- waiting for me to take the photo in the background. My kids are very tolerant of my quirks, generally speaking.

This is the first artistamp I ever made, I think. No graphics software, so just text printed on cardstock, and then the sisters were collaged together on top of gold tissue paper, glued onto the background, swiped with a gold inkpad, flicked with gold paint, and then reproduced by color copy. It was made for a book group invitation to a discussion of Wuthering Heights.

Artistamp Mailing List Anniversary

It's time for the annual AML (Artistamp Mailing List) anniversary exchange. This is the 10th anniversary, though I have only participated in three of the exchanges so far. At the moment I can't find the first one I did, but the last two years were still on my desk or by the computer.

9th anniversary: digital photo of watercolor/rapidograph (old college-era) piece and added text in Photoshop.

8th Anniversary: another re-purposed watercolor, this one was unfinished (for good reason), but fixed the bird's beak and added a background in Photoshop.