And the last one until I get back. Fat little birds and soft cashmere leaves.
I’ve been putting this off all week but I need to do it. It is really helpful for me to have my yearly reflections written down here so let’s look back.
Wow, I’m not going to lie, it has been a really tough year. Politics will be mentioned. The situation in our country and the world has been terrifying. I did some artwork in the first few months of the year to help me deal with my feelings of despair.
I posted about the above and below here.
Later, I spent a month working on this-
I had a very busy trip to LA in April which I posted about here and here. The trip was awesome and I love LA. It was hard to really relax though and I felt that many people I was around were also feeling the weight of the world’s troubles. And then my Mom died.
Unfortunately, as the year went on, I just found myself wanting to retreat more and more. Nothing seemed to help- social media has been/is overwhelming with the constant outrage, my energy and creativity felt sapped when I engaged. During the first 6 months of the year I felt like I couldn’t find the joy in my work or even get to that wonderful focus where the world recedes and I’m in the work zone. Having some shows and deadlines helped. Also, audio books and podcasts. I’ve been continuing to post photos and work pics but somehow the words are gone. I don’t feel chatty about my work on my blog or on any of the other sites where I hang out. I have retreated not only online but also in real life. I know it is not good for me so I guess that is what I have to work on this year.
There were good things too, thank goodness. My garden was amazing this year. If you follow me on Instagram, there were lots of flower pics. the daylilies and the dahlias!
In August I was feeling so uninspired that I knew I needed to mix things up a bit. I spent 2 weeks working on a quilt idea. I played with colors. shapes, designs. I didn’t finish anything but I’ll get back to it at some point. I felt totally recharged after that- It was like a brain vacation. Obviously, something I should do more often!
That got me back into work mode for the fall and right up to Christmas. I had a great show at CraftBoston 2017 and I plan on a post about my booth, hopefully tomorrow.
Lastly, I was part of this beautiful book, Beards Rock. A real honor.
And now, 2018. I hope with all my heart that this year will bring a more stable and peaceful world although this first week does not make that seem likely. On my personal horizon, I have lots to look forward to.
I will be going back to LA at the end of February to teach at French General again. This time we will be doing Swaddled Babies. There are still a few spaces available if you’d like to join in the fun. Check out all the info here. I am also planning to visit QuiltCon.
In April, I will be in Washington DC for the Smithsonian Craft Show at the National Building Museum.
Then, in August I will head west again, to San Francisco, for the ACC show at Fort Mason.
I think that having all these things to look forward to will keep my head in a good place. I’m already back in the studio getting a little work done, doing some cleaning and organizing, and thinking about all the projects ahead. Happy New Year everyone!
Suddenly it seems I am teaching a lot of classes!
Sunday Feb. 19, 12- 4
and on Saturday March 25, Tiny World Pincushions.
I will also be making a Crafty Hand ornament at Craftcation.
I hope some of you can join me for a fun few hours of making. Give yourself a crafty retreat-from-the-world spa day.
This weekend, THIS is happening!
If you are in the Boston area this weekend, it would be amazing if you could stop by! And the other event, coming up soon- Dec. 2, 3, and 4-
CraftBoston Holiday! I’m making myself a bit crazy about this one. It is a kind of show that I’ve never done before, and I need a whole new booth set-up (fancy, that is). Yep, stressed. If you go here, there is a way to get $3 off the entry ticket. And of course I am working to produce the most inventory that I can. It’s all a test because no matter what, ya never get it all figured out and ya just keep trying something new. And, Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate!
This owl is wool (body) with cashmere wings and tummy, alpaca face. Not as all-over soft as the last on but with some lovely pet-able bits.
And, last one-
Super soft, almost all cashmere except the face. He/she is made up of various shades and textures in white.
I am working hard in my studio right now, doing all the work that will eventually lead up to great bursts of finished pieces. In the past few weeks, I have spent 3 full days dyeing fabrics for tattooed people. I have cut out great piles of people body pieces, fish, owls, swaddled babies. I have started sewing up some of the men because I am working to fill out my inventory for my trip to Nashville at the end of September. Having a show on the calendar is inspiring me! I’m focused on the making and I can’t seem to make the time to put any of the most recent pieces into my etsy shop. As always, if you see anything go by that you are interested in, let me know and I can send details.
Have you heard about Sonya Philip‘s project, Summer Stitch Fest? It is all about making a handmade wardrobe. She is hoping to get people sewing, knitting, whatever, next weekend, July 29, 30, and 31, then posting online with the hashtag #summerstitchfest16. I am planning on participating and to warm up, I pulled out everything I’ve made so far this year and photographed it to show you. I tend to make a bunch of stuff when I am going to travel or have an event and then nothing for a long while. All the pics are things I made right before I went to LA in April.
The simplest first- a linen scarf. I actually made 2 but I couldn’t find the other one today! These are super easy to make. The one I couldn’t find is made of a drape-y shot cotton. I bought 2 yards, cut it down the middle the long way, zig-zagged the edge with a variegated thread and done! This one is seamed in the middle because I only had one yard but I wanted this color.
Next is my favorite skirt pattern, Oliver & S Everyday skirt. This is the 4th one I’ve made. Easy, comfortable, pockets. I love it.
Next, a linen shirt. I bought this linen at IKEA, a while back. I think it was meant for curtains but it makes an excellent shirt! This shirt has a pocket because I want pockets in everything. This is the second shirt I’ve made of this pattern. This and the next things are all made from patterns that I drafted from favorite clothing that wore out a long time ago.
And 2 smocks/dresses. I wear this style most of the time, with long and short sleeve shirts, over jeans or skirts. They both have 2 side in-seam pockets.
I think this one looks a little like a Brownie uniform!
I could only find one photo of me wearing any of these things. Here I am in LA last April.
Hope to see you posting your handmade wardrobe next weekend!