I’m a winner!

Awards 2016 (25)

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you! I feel my head swelling as I write this!

I am so honored to have been named a winner of the Academy of Handmade awards- category, Textiles: Wovens. When I received an email telling me that I had been nominated, I was completely surprised and I really didn’t know anything about the organization- Academy Of Handmade. (Here is a list of all the 2016 nominees.) Luckily, when I was out in LA at Craftcation, I met people who are involved with it and I think I have a better idea now.

It is an online and in-person support group for micro handmade businesses like mine. You have to apply to be a member, there is a membership fee, and it is mostly West Coast based at this point. It seems to be a formalized version of my Crafty Biz meet-up. (Their faq page.) I would guess that it is incredibly helpful to people who are near an in-person chapter. I get so much from my monthly meeting up with people who are doing a similar maker biz thing.

Speaking of which, Merriweather Council, my friend and former Crafty Biz meet-up fellow (we miss you since you moved Danielle!) was a winner too! She also won the award for Handmade Community Superstar which she totally deserves!

A girl doll finished!

I know, about time! I started working on the girls last fall but put them away before any were finished because the shop had to be filled for the Holidays. Now finally, I have finished one. And this will be the only doll I finish in April- what a crazy month it has been!

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I wanted to make a dress-able doll so I made her body look like it was already in underwear and shoes. She has corduroy pants with straps, a Liberty fabric shirt, and a cashmere sweater. What a lucky girl!

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Her hair is made of mohair teddy bear fur. I love that fabric but whoa is it expensive.

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She is approximately 20 inches tall.

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LA Flowers

I love going to a new place with a completely different ecosystem. At home, I am used to walking around and knowing most of the plants. When I go somewhere with a completely different climate, it is all an awesome mystery. I can’t get over the wonder of it all!

First, some flowers from my beach walk in Ventura.

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I know these ones- California Poppies.

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After leaving snowy Boston, all the flowers were bliss.

We left Ventura and drove to the Joshua Tree National Park. I’m so glad we went. The high desert is a beautiful place when winter rains have caused so many flowers to bloom. I hope I can visit again, maybe in another season.

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These are just a few of the many, many flowers we saw blooming there.

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Lots of plants growing out of rock crevices-

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Then LA. This particular flower was at the Getty Center-

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And these were at the Los Angeles Arboretum and Botanical Gardens. That was my favorite (non-fabric store) place we visited in LA.

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On our last day, we spent the afternoon walking around Venice Beach and the canals there. Oh my, this house is so beautiful-

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And the garden with all the colors of green- it took my breath away.

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That’s all the tropical flowers- don’t want to overwhelm the blog! We are getting some spring here in Boston so I will have lots of my own flowers to enjoy soon.

 

some fabric printing and other news

I said in my last post that I got excited about the block printing. Yesterday, I cleared off my table and got to work-

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Of course I am jumping in to the middle of the story here because I wanted to put in a picture. The tale starts when I got back from California and thought, Oh what fun! I can go to the Art Store and spend a bunch of $$$ on some fabric inks… Hmmm. Then I remembered that way back in 2007, I did some fabric printing for an online swap. And, I was blogging then so I could go back and read the 2 posts about what I did- so helpful! It took me a lot of searching to find where I’d put all the various supplies. And, unfortunately I didn’t note some specific info that would have been helpful, like the proportions of fabric medium to pigment. But, onward.

I ironed my fabric to give myself a grid pattern to work on but I still managed to mess up the pattern. Whatever! I wish the lighter color of the flowers was more opaque but Whatever!

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There is no point in being a perfectionist on a project like this or I’d never even try. Here is the scarf/shawl, edges zig-zag finished and washed although obviously not ironed. You can see the back and the front.

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This was my inspiration for the flower block- from my walk along the beach in Ventura.

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I hope it doesn’t take me another 9 years to try it again.

And some other news- I will be teaching a Tiny World Pincushion class in Cambridge, MA on May 14 and 15 at Gather Here.

Are you on Periscope? I will be spending some time with Lilla Rogers on Tuesday afternoon- join us, it’ll be fun! I believe that Lilla saves all her casts to YouTube so hopefully I can post a link afterwards if you miss it.

Lastly, here is a beautiful video interview with Georgina Haynes from LAIKA who I had the pleasure of spending some time with last summer in Portland, OR. It gives me chills and heart tugs to see the puppets come to life.

LA trip report

I had an amazing time in LA. What can I say? Leaving Boston with snow on the ground and going somewhere with palm trees will always work for me! First stop was the Craftcation Conference in Ventura.

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That beach was about a block from the hotel. There were teenagers playing volleyball on the sand, people who actually¬† said “gnarly” completely seriously, all the plants we could never grow here- it really, most definitely, is not Boston. It was great!

The conference was excellent. It is described as “4 days of creative business classes and hands-on craft and food workshops”. It sounded right up my alley and I’d talked to someone who’d gone in 2015 so I was pretty sure it would be a good time. The thing is, when I step out of my house, I never know what I will learn and what will stick with me. What ended up being the best part for me? Socializing with my peers. Just hanging out and talking with other people who have creative lives and businesses. I don’t get enough of that, ever. It is one of the perils of being an introvert and working by myself. I actually met amazing 2 people who live right here in Massachusetts- Funny how I have to go all the way across the country to meet my local peers! Hi Crispina and Jenny! Of course I loved all the other parts too. I made a simple shirt with Sonya, talked about designing a wardrobe with her too, embroidered with Robert, and did block printing with Lisa. I have gotten all excited about the block printing so more on that later! But, here is what I did in class-

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and blue-

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These fellows came out with me and got to meet lots of Craftcation attendees.

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Okay, that was the first part of my California trip. I will show-and-tell more soon.

 

 

 

and the last!

One last dog- a girl, and all the knits!

She is made of a tweedy brown sweater, she is wearing a Fair Isle sweater, her skirt and shawl are cashmere. She is #14 dog of 2016. That was a very big litter of pups!

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