22 May 2006

Busy with Etsy

I've been busy this week with Etsy stuff. First there was the coproduction contest entry. The "winners" of the contest will be announced on June 1st but I feel (and I know it sounds a bit twee) that I've won simply by participating and getting the project listed.

I got five of my Raku pins posted in my Etsy shop this evening. I absolutely love each of the five for different reasons.

I picked up the yarn for the Ruana on Friday. Arlene, who dyed the wool roving that I used for the needlefelted embellishment spun the rest of the dyed roving from that batch into the most gorgeous yarn. It is so gorgeous that I hate to cut it up to make fringe. But I'm going to try to get over that because it really will be the perfect finishing touch for the wrap.

18 May 2006

Assorted felting thoughts and projects

Here's a picture of Sprout modeling the Ruana. She absolutely loves it. She keeps running her hands over the material, especially the needlefelting and saying "Pitty, pitty." She likes to pull it over her head to play hide and seek. She walks in circles with her arms held out and up so that the fabric trails like wings.

I keep talking about needle felting so I thought that I'd post some links for people who might be interested in trying it out for themselves. I subscribe to the Fieltromania blog via bloglines and found the link to Marika van Esveld's website with a PDF tutorial for a small 3 dimensional needlefelted dog. In Marika's blog, there is also a tutorial for needlefelted Easter eggs that lend themselves to some beautiful embellishment.

On Monday, while we were in the waiting room at the doctor's office with Sprout, I was flipping through a copy of Family Fun magazine and saw a craft project in polymer clay for kids that I thought would translate well to needlefelting.

[Please note that there is quite a bit more needle felting information available in other entries of this blog.]

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16 May 2006

Missed Anniversaries

Somehow, I won't speculate about how, I managed to completely overlook the 1 year anniversary of the beginning of this blog. When I started the blog, I hoped that I'd be able to motivate myself to post at least once a week. Looking at the archive, there have been times when I've done much better than that and others when I've gone as much as a month without posting. I've learned a lot about my work habits from keeping the blog.

I've also kept a document of Sprout's growth for the past year. As she develops further in her personhood, it is beginning to feel a bit like an invasion of her privacy to keep posting pictures in a public arena. I wouldn't want my blog to be an embarassment to her. And as tempting as it may be, later in her willful years, to have a document to hold over her head, I'm trying to find a balance point where I can celebrate her role in every facet of my life without exposing her to unwanted attention. I expect that this will be coming up again and again over the next few months.

Right now, things are kinda calm. I'm trying to climb out of a depressive pit that I tumbled into several weeks/months ago. The dark mood, self-abusive thought patterns, insatiable appetite for sleep, and studious avoidance of the studio have peaked and I'm experiencing a dawning enthusiasm for new projects.

One of those new projects is the Wardrobe Refashion '06. I've taken a 6-Month pledge to "abstain from the purchase of 'new' manufactured items of clothing." (See my pledge button over to the right...) This should be an interesting experiment since I don't sew. What I'll be doing, instead of making my own clothes, is scouring thrift shops and trying to find ways of altering clothes that I already have to give them new life.

I've taken the first step in that direction by altering a Ruana that has been floating around my closets for at least a few years. I'm not sure which thrift shop I picked it up at, or what I paid for it at the time. I also have no idea what the fiber content of the garment is. That didn't stop me from adding needle-felted embelishment using a beautiful handpainted marino roving from Fiberworks. With the Marino embellishment, it's probably best to dryclean anyway, so I'm sure that the garment will be fine when I'm done with it. I have another mystery fiber solid color Ruana in the closet waiting for embellishment when I figure out how I want to decorate it.

I'm searching high and low for wool blazers in a size 28 or 30/32 (I have the shoulders of a line backer and it's probably best not to discuss my breasts...) so that I can embellish them as well. I'm really excited about the possibilities that a wool blazer can represent.

I have a couple of pairs of denim capri pants that I inherited from my mother that I want to remake into skirts. I have a pair of worsted wool suit pants that I picked up at a thrift shop that I want to cut and use for the panels in the jeans skirts. I've already washed them to felt/full them as much as possible. I want to needle-felt the wool panels as well.

Well, speaking of my mom, she should be here any minute to pick up her granddaughter and I. Sprout is recovering from a short-lived but distressing illness and we want to spend some quality time with her. I should get ready to go.

03 May 2006

Walking blues rhythm

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I've been measuring my life in steps for the last week. 3700 per day, on average, usually close on the heels of a toddler who is moving at a dead run. When she's not running, she's seemed glued to me, and when she is neither running nor glued to my side, I can hear the word "Mama" ringing in her clear voice. I got a pedometer in an effort to increase my awareness of my activity level. (Or should I say, lack of activity level?) I'm hoping to work on improving my general health while the weather is so nice.

We took Sprout to Indiana on Sunday for pictures. She is growing into such a little lady. It's hard to believe that I've been keeping this blog for almost a year and that so much of her growth and emergence into personhood has unfolded as I've written about my daily life and the struggle to find a way to balance my creative life and the demands (and significant joys) of motherhood.

Sprout amazes me. She builds and stacks with blocks. Her vocabulary increases every day. She's an amazing mimic. And, she is so beautiful that she takes my breath away. I live in mortal terror that someone will come to me and tell me that she's not really mine and that I'll have to give her back. It doesn't matter how much of her father and my family I can see in her, I just can't quite shake this fear that she's too good to be true.

The word images at the beginning of the post came from this really cool site. If you like them, you might also like this site which does something very similar with letters found in nature or in butterfly wings.
Photo of Sprout taken by Sandy Nabb at Nabb Photography of New Salsbury, Indiana.