Friday, November 14, 2014

Things are happenin'!

Well, while winter isn't "officially" here, she is making her presence known.  Threats of snow here in Connecticut, actual snowstorms everywhere else!  Honestly, I like all the seasons, but Fall and Winter are my favorites because it's time to hunker down and rest up from the busy Spring and Summer.  Gardens, vacations, people coming to visit, etc make Spring and Summer a little tiring.

On to rug hooking news!  I have been one lucky hooker!  A friend from my knitting circle contacted me about an artist friend of hers wanting to sell some wool.  Her mother-in-law had passed, and (as she put it) had some wool in her basement.  I emailed her, and we scheduled a time for me to come to her sister-in-law's house to check out the wool. I headed over to her house after work one day (it was only a little over a mile from work...coincidence?  I think not!)  Down the basement we went, and I saw wool nirvana!!  The picture below is the wool in my garage because OF COURSE I BOUGHT IT!  They gave me the best deal on this wool, and now I'm set for life!

Yes, that's MANY six foot rolls of wool!  Apparently the mother-in-law bought out a rug braiding shop and this was what she had left. 

Once the wool was in the garage, I realized that I have a studio that needs overhauling!  So upstairs we (hubby and I) went, made a list, then got to work.  It's about a third done, and I'm able to spread my studio out over two rooms.  I can't believe how lucky I am!  After seeing a wonderful wool room on a fellow rug hooker's Facebook, I copycatted, headed to Ikea in New Haven and the results are below.  Keep in mind that it's a work in progress.

These Ikea shelves are perfect for storing wool, and as you can see, I have plenty of space to add more!  There's more, but I think I'll wait for a grand reveal.  All the mess is a bit embarrassing! I am just eager to get back to hooking, spinning, and knitting, and this mess is holding me!

So it's back to work for me, so I'll leave you all with a picture of our Winston in a tiara. He doesn't seem very happy, but he got a treat after! 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Such a great Sunday!

This past Sunday, I was a vendor at the 49th Annual Pumpkin Festival in Seymour, CT.  It was such a well organized show with super friendly volunteers, and bazillions of people!!  Aaron (hubby) was such a help as my muscle, and really great as a second set of eyes.  I must admit, he has a pretty good design eye! 

Right after set up....I already look a little worn out! lol


Here's the corner with one of Aaron's ideas.  Hung those shutters right up on the booth canopy.  Great idea!

After a couple of hours, I finally found "my people", as Aaron put it.  Rug hookers, wanna be rug hookers, and hooked rug admirers started coming around!   Four of my rugs found new homes, and even one of my needle punch projects will be heading south in the winter! 

Now that the show is over, we will be heading to the Outer Banks for a much needed vacation with friends for a week.  I will, of course, visit my favorite Outer Banks knitting shop, Knitting Addiction for ideas and yummy yarn.  Once back, I will head back into the dye pots and restock my Etsy shop, expand the colors I offer, and hopefully get the creative juices flowing for Christmas presents!

To any Pumpkin Festival attendees reading, welcome!  Please feel free to leave comments!!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

A strange and wonderful summer!

*Warning - Heavy picture post!*

My hooking and needle punching is just off the hook! (pun!  My first juried show is happening in September, and I want to make sure I have lots of items to fill my booth!  I will definitely carry yards and yards of hand-dyed wood for hooking, quilting, or what have you. (picture in the last post).  I also have small rugs and mats that should go well.  I've been advised to go easy on the larger rugs because of cost.....and I do love to hook the larger rugs!

 Little mats
 Pumpkin pillow

 Fraktur flower mat on a small step stool
Beginning needle punch to mount on a kitchen jar

Our garden is also going gangbusters!  We have sunflowers in the same bed at the beets

Bees busy at work!

 Listada De Gandia Eggplant (rumor has it these are hard to grow, but no problems here)!
 Okra flower.
 Surprise Birdhouse Gourd vine!  I have about 30 of these gourds from my garden last year.  Must've dropped a few seeds this spring! lol
 Yummy carrots!
 Potato towers!  These were an experiment that seems to be successful!
 Beds containing three types of tomatoes, two types of peppers, and a few mystery plants.

And last but not least, I have something in the works that needs to stay hush-hush, but I will definitely let ya'll know how it turns out soon!  


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Back in the saddle again!

Took out the dye pots on Saturday and had a binge dyeing weekend! Lots of things going on lately, and I've realized that I really need to make sure I don't ignore what I really love doing!  Creating these colors, painting with dyes, if you will, makes me happy. Then either creating a rug, or see my wools go into someone else's vision just thrills me!

So, a little catching up. I'm still working, but have actively started working towards my dream of being able to be a fiber artist full time. September 21, I am vending at the Pumpkin Festival in Seymour. This is quite exciting on many parts, one being that this is my first juried show. Also, a few weeks ago, I took a personal day from work, and went to Sandy Hook to meet one of my favorite bloggers, Lori Brechlin. Her blog, NotForgotten Farm, is on my blog roll, and I just love her artistic style. She is just as nice and easy to chat with as I thought she would be. We had a great conversation, and she's really supportive of other artists.

Hubby is still working hard in his business. He is about 3 1/2 years in, and just keeps getting more and more business. Hopefully, he'll be able to hire a couple more people and ease up his stress levels!

Well, I've got a hooked pillow that is hollerin' ' to be finished, so I guess I'd better get to work. On vacation this week, so more pics to follow tomorrow!  Gotta end with the latest pic of our sweet pup, Winston.  This is his "do you hafta hook now?!" look.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


Pretty amazing.  From 1950, but sounds like it could be today.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Weekend Dyeing Fun!

Since I am client training this week away from home, I knew I had to get some crafty goodness under my belt to get me through the week!  Saturday I decided to use the day to get some wool dyed in preparation for a couple of art fairs I'm going to do in the next couple of months.  I grabbed a large turkey roaster, a large bag of ice and lots of Cushing Dye packs and got to work!  The idea for ice dyeing came from one of my most favorite blogs, Primitive Spirit.  Karen Kahle is a well-known fiber artist, and I just LOVE pretty much everything she does!  (I may be a little stalker-ish....don't judge)!

So once I got all the supplies together, I got started.  The color recipes I used are at home, so I'll add them to this post later, but have lots of pics to share!  Let me know what you think.

After soaking a yard of taupe wool in lukewarm water with a few drops of Dawn and vinegar, I plopped it into the roaster with about 1/2" of water in the bottom.

I then added a layer of ice and began sprinkling the different dye colors onto the ice.  Be careful with this step, and you might want to wear a dust mask.

Put the top on and turn the roaster to 300 degrees for a little over an hour or until the ice has melted.  I took the wool out of the roaster and put it into a strainer (used ONLY for dyeing) then gave it a spin in the washer and hung it out to dry. Repeat the process four times with different colors, and Here's the results!  Can't wait to use these colors in a rug as soon as I get back from my work trip!

Our garden is producing gangbusters, so last Wednesday I got to work making bread and butter pickles, but with honey instead of sugar.

 Getting the cukes ready!

Yummy pickles!!
So now I'm in Springfield, MO to do some training for one of our new clients, but come the weekend, I'll be back home crafting and canning!  I can't wait!!