Monday, January 25, 2010

Beads, Bangles, and Bracelets

I've decided to use up some of the little things laying around here. These are the beads, bangles and bracelets that I've come up with. They are little things, things that are fun to play with. My granddaughter loves them. She is 17.

I am finding new ways to fill some voids while I am felting. I used to read a lot but now that felting has become the daily focus of my life, there is rarely time for that, and frankly, the energy. So I've made a trip to the local library to begin getting books on CD. Wonderful! I am currently listening to: THREE CUPS OF TEA. It's been a fascinating listen, and it soothes my "multi-tasking" heart. I often listen to music, jazz, classical, piano, flute, hymns, and praise music. It feels good to be adding some reading to the mix. Any good books you can suggest?

Do you work in silence or do you have music or TV or waterfall? Just wondering.

Friday, January 22, 2010

I'm growing more and more focused on creating some order in my life. There is so much going on that I need that somewhere, and for now , I am choosing my home. My beloved granddaughter Mollie is helping me with so many of the little things that need to be taken care of. There is too much to get done and only one of me. If I could only turn the ideas and the brain off. What a help that would be sometimes!
Often, when there is so much to do, I can only start a small thing that I know I can finish. These are the 'small things" that I've been able to do over the past few days. These are 50/50 merino silk, in 4 ounce bundles. I love to felt with these--it's what i do my felt flowers out of, and I love to spin this stuff! Anyway, I've posted them on Etsy if anyone is interested. I'll get back to felting soon, but for now, Mollie and I getting lots of things done. It feels so good!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Udder Panic!

It's been a busy time here and the house is in utter despair. I keep promising myself that I'll get it taken care of right after(blah, blah, blah)......and some of you know what I mean. I'm at the point where if I get the dishes done, toilets cleaned and the vacuum run, I'm doing good.

There have been many orders, which I am thankful for, but they do take time to fill and ship.

My baby sister had a baby boy this past week. She lives in Boston, so we are in the midst of planning a "Mail Baby Shower" for her. It's taking a lot of coordination and computer time I usually don't spend.

My beloved husband has been sick for several weeks with what started out as a really bad cold. He had about 4-5 days where he started feeling better, then he relapsed and has lost his voice. For most people that might be a small inconvenience, but we run a radio station. He is the voice of the morning, news, weather, live ads, updates and bulletins. This morning he announces that I am doing the news, weather and live commercials. Utter panic! I was able to get through it, but like most folks, I don't like to hear my own voice and especially on the radio! YIKES! I hope his voice comes back very NOW!

After the orders were packed, I did get to make some pre-felts for some upcoming ideas, and I made this hat yesterday. I have to re-felt the little 'stove pipes", they are firm, but I am planning on putting a dowel up inside of them and felting them to very firm. The locks coming off of the top of each of them is Teeswater. Love how they felt! I am hoping to do a series of these hats. They are just fun to wear! I wore this one of my daily walk a got a bunch of comments. One gal says it looks like udders on a cow, but she liked it. It makes people smile and that makes me smile too. Just a great way to greet the day!

Keep Smiling and make great felt!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Oddities and Some Great Finds!

Lost in space and time and a strong sense that I have no idea what is going on in the world, or in my own world. Being pulled in so many directions these days, so many who need my time and attention, and deserve all I can give to them. It is a different level of is mental fatigue, not so much physical.
I messed up a breakfast date by not calling back, made a hat that was horrific in color--(tried to put lime green and purple together--unsuccessfully, I might add!) though very good texture and had to over dye it to save it (shown here on this entry), went to Goodwill to look for silk scarves and found a bunch with great colors and designs for .99 each. I also found a plastic bracelet that just needed to come home to be felted. I wanted to try it for one of those classes that could be easily used when teaching children. It took little time to felt. Actually beading it took longer than felting it. However, I do think it would work well with kids. Would be a fun thing to teach for gift giving for Mother's Day.

It's been bitter cold for several weeks, but we've had a warming trend the past couple of days. After my morning walk I pulled into the drive way to find this huge 4 foot icicle hanging from the utility wire that runs from our house to the street, and it was right above where I step out of the car. It must have formed around the wire as it clung to our house, but then with the warming, it broke off from the house and slid down the wire, dangling right above my head! Decide to park on the street until it melted and dropped off. It finally did today. If it didn't kill me, it would have done damage to the car. It was just weird to see this huge icicle hanging from a wire.

I am having a small glass of wine and then heading off to bed. Tomorrow is another over-filled day of appointments, orders to fill, products to order, family and friends to love, prayers to offer for so many in Haiti, those who need help, those who are providing help. I watched the news on this tonight and the despair in Haiti is incredible. I cannot help but wonder about the children and how many are without family. It breaks my heart.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Just a Little Thing

Taught another class yesterday and had so much fun. Seriously, God sends wonderful students my way. The class ended a bit late so I don't have photos to share with you, but one would be of a really great hat with tons of texture and color and the other would be of a wonderful pair of boots. The gals worked really hard, and at the end of the session, I think they were happy with their results. I was really proud of them.

(PS: Allison just sent me a photo of her needle to wet felted boots. They are made with lincoln-teeswater cross that was hand-dyed. I think they are wonderful. She did 6 layers in the layout. This is her second felting project. I'm so impressed!)

After things settled down, after the work area got cleaned up, after dinner, just before jumping into PJ's, I decided I wanted to try this little thing, this little piece of beaded felt, this little necklace thing. I knew I wanted it simple. While I do not wear jewelry, not even my wedding ring, I thought I might be comfortable wearing something like this. You never know, it just might give me the chance to talk about one of my favorite subjects, simple, complex wool's just a little thing, but like a key, a simple, little thing can open doors.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

It's In The Bag

In between life, I've been trying to make this bag. I started it last night, worked on it until 1 AM this morning. Started on it again this morning. It has three large pockets, two on the inside, and one on the outside, where the silk fabric is. It is nearly dry, and as it has dried, I'm thinking it needs to be felted further. I want a very thoroughly fulled bag. There is still a bit of give to the fabric, so it can be felted or fulled further. I'm too tired to do more tonight.

I wish the bag had shrunk further in length, and that is what I'll focus on when I work on it again. The pockets turned out great and I am especially pleased with the bark effect on the outside pocket. Silk is magical, isn't it?

I've been shoveling snow off and on today, trying to keep up with it. I just know the snow plow is going to go through and block off the driveway again. Shoveling that snowplow snow is really hard work!
Did full the bag further. It started out as 14x21, ended up at 9x13. The felt is strong and study. I am much happier with the final fulling. Perhaps the wool and I both needed a rest so we could work better together.
Shalom and happy felting!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Before and After, Then and Now + Workshop Details

At Martha's suggestion, I am showing the silk scarf prior to applying the wool and afterward. I used one layer of super fine merino wool, deep violet purple on the back of the scarf. There was about 40% shrinkage on the piece. Love the silk scarf either way, the wool just adds a lovely texture to the item.

Also want to announce a workshop this Friday, Jan. 8th, 2010 at my home, from 10 am til 5 pm. Class size is limited to 5 people. Will cover basic felt making, then hat making with either foam or flat resist method, student choice. If you are interested, please contact me:

I hope that this is all I do today. I am not able to focus, so it is best just to stop doing much at all. Might pick up the crochet hook and see what happens. Am making some hats for the homeless in our area. Sadly, that number keeps growing. Reminds me to be ever more thankful for the blessings of this very old, drafty home. It is here and so am I. I cannot imagine being homeless, especially in the winter. I cannot imagine what I would do with my mind to keep the utter despair away.

So much to be thankful for!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Know Your Body Shape!

Somewhere between "I'm so tired I can't sleep" and "My gallbladder is killing me" I decided to work on a pair of fingerless arm sheaths. I couldn't find my old resist, so I made a new one...only I forgot to make it right! I used a resist that did not account for the fact that arms get wider as they approach the elbow. (Really, should have just gone to bed anyway) and so I have a lovely pair of fingerless arm sheaths that will fit no one but me and my granddaughter. The resist needs to be larger as well in the width. I am a tiny person, and when I am working in size non- specific, I tend to go toward my size. Got to stop doing that! Anyway, Sweet Granddaughter will get these. They are snug even on me. So next resist will be two inches larger in width, with a gradual increase in width toward elbow. I made this pair out of a blue-faced Leicester and silk, with hand dyed silk fabric on the top. I used 4 very thin layers of wool. They are subtle, soft and very warm. I think Elizabeth will like them, and I have had to re-learn remembering the shapes of arms.
Off to make felt...maybe in a more normal size this time!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Package from Martha

I had the good sense to get all of my chores done around the house early today, including laundry and got to spend some long overdue time with my good friends Terri and Irene. It is rare that we get to see each other anymore, but it is so wonderful when we do. We always laugh so much, and that is just the best! As usual, we always promise that we are going to get together more often, and as usual, it just doesn't happen. Still, there is nothing like being with dear friends.

When I got home, there was a package from Martha! Oh, what a wonderful package it was! Filled with shawls, silk scarves, love. The scarf that is up on the blog is one that I just had to nuno/laminate felt right away. Ok, so it took a good many hours, but I just couldn't wait a moment to do it. I used a navy blue merino silk blend on the reverse side. It turned out lovely, I think.

Dear husband is quite sick with a bad cold. I think I'm buying dinner this evening.
Oh, I forgot. I wanted to tell you all that on Christmas Eve, I had to make a quick run to the store. While on the drive, there was something in the middle of the road, kind of fluttering around. I stopped the van, go out and walked up to a Screech Owl, who had a mouse in its claws. We just looked at each other. I could have reached out and touch it. I was with it for about 3-4 minutes, and when I turned to go back to my van, off she flew. What a great memory to have. I've always loved owls, and to be that close to one in the wild was just really special.


PS: Did the green one on Sunday, just had to do one more!