Today there is sadness. The world seems a little less bright because of the loss of a schoolmate and friend. We hadn’t seen each other much since high school, but bumped into each other on Facebook a few years ago and got reacquainted. She helped me through my deep seated angst at reconnecting with classmates from long ago; and on chat we discussed, at length, our issues and heartaches about our kids who had issues of their own. And, as mothers, we prayed for the kids and for each other. We had rousing Facebook discussions about our favorite T.V. show and the characters we liked and didn’t like and what we thought their fates should be. And we enjoyed sharing and commenting on pictures of our grandchildren. Then she got sick. At least that part’s over now.
Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the somber and reflective season of Lent. Usually, it takes a while to settle down into the discipline of the season. I won’t have to settle into it this year. I’m already there – somber, reflective and sad.
Today I’m going to see if I can figure out how to stitch a way through sadness with a little cloth.
The weather in NW Oregon has been abysmally hot for a few days. We had to keep the windows shut and the curtains closed. We don’t have air conditioning because we hardly ever need it. It was a blessing when, at last, yesterday’s morning dawned cool and overcast.
We threw open the curtains and opened the windows wide. I didn’t see it at first. I was busy at the computer. Then I caught something out of the corner of my eye. I turned to look and this rose was looking in at me through the window screen.
The rose bush was growing by the porch when we bought the house. We almost removed it the first year, but decided to give it a chance. For almost thirty years now this bush has been tossing out beautiful blooms like candy favors. August is now more than half over. There will be a few more roses before Autumn truly arrives. But the light seems different and the leaves are changing color here and there. The changing season can be felt in the morning air, and I can’t help thinking of this offering at my window as ‘the last rose of summer’.
This blossom may be the best one yet. Seeing it brings me joy while I sit here and sip my morning tea and think about what I am going to do today in the way of art. Moons. Yes, moons. Today I will be making moons out of a little cloth.
Couldn’t sleep last night, so I was awake as the morning twilight brightened into dawn and then into full day. At 5:00 a.m. I took my camera outside to get a couple photos. As I stood on the deck in the cool morning air snapping pics of the dawn, I counted at least eight different bird songs (plus a neighboring chicken) all singing madly, a melodious and cacophonous symphony, all around me as the sun came up.
A haiku to remember it by:
The sun rises pink
As winged friends madly sing,
“It is Dawn! Arise!”
I’ve been threatening to work on several projects lately, but have yet to get there. It’s like something has been holding me back. Like a hand in my chest pushing against me as I try to go forward. I’ve let any number of distractions deflect me from my art. Any old excuse will do it has seemed: No place to work; can’t find the right fabric (yes, but did you really look for it?); can’t find the new travel iron that was bought to use with the fabric; not in the mood; out of time; can’t find the supplies; just want to lay in this recliner; too many people in the house; not enough people in the house; too tired; I’d rather watch T.V.; I’d rather be on Facebook, ya-da, ya-da, ya-da, ad infinitum….but
Today is different. I feel full of art today. Something about being out at 5:00 a.m. when the rest of the house is asleep and hearing the birds singing madly for me/to me/for the dawn. They are working, it seems, on their art, too. Singing in the new day, whether anyone is awake to hear it or not. Sharing their message, and I, most definitely, got it: “It is Dawn! Arise!”
Chat later. It’s time to go make A Little Cloth.
Posted in Art, Cloth, Uncategorized
Tagged art, cloth, Craft, fabric, photos, sewing, slow cloth, Spinning, stitching, weaving
My last post was about Helga, the Rognvaldson spinning wheel I found in a local antique shop. Work continues on restoring Helga’s finish, getting her back to her former glory. The work is slow and exacting. With that in mind, I decided to buy a new spinning wheel to work with as I improve my novice spinning skills.
I would like to introduce you to Helga’s sister, Magda. Magda is a Kromski Prelude spinning wheel, suitable for newbies like me – not too many bells and whistles. I’m busy taking a couple Craftsy classes on spinning, and I’ve just discovered that there is a new group in my hometown for spinners, crocheters, knitters & other fiber artists that will be meeting monthly, at a time & location that is convenient for me. There is an older, larger and well-established guild just across the river from me, but its meetings never seem to jive with my schedule. I’m excited to try out the new group.
I probably will not make great strides in spinning the next few months, since Summer is upon us and the outdoors is calling me but, at least, I have a start!
Posted in Art, Craft, Spinning, Weaving
Tagged art, cloth, Craft, fabric, Fiber, Loom, sewing, slow cloth, Spinning, stitching, weaving
I bet you thought I forgot all about blogging, right? My last post was in November, just before NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). I did get my 50,000 words and certificate for writing that many words in a month, but I was a rebel. I did not write a novel, but naturalist memoir. I’ve been letting it sit for a while. Sometime later this year I will tackle editing. After November I got sick with whatever was going around and ended up with a bad sinus infection which persisted through the holidays and into January. I am now back to what is normal for me at the end of March.
The other day I was looking at weaving looms, which I do regularly even if I am not planning on buying one, on Craigslist. After looking at looms I looked up spinning wheels. Don’t know why I did that as I am not a spinner and have had no plans of being one (you can guess where this is going), and up came a wheel in our local area, in another town just 12 miles from my house. The pictures listed on Cragislist were so bad that I couldn’t really see much of anything, let alone see if it seemed to have all of its parts. If it was a working wheel, which the ad said it was, the listed price was dirt cheap. I didn’t really have to convince the husband to go with me because our favorite place to get a mocha is in the same town. So, off we went.
I’ll spare the details, but we ended up buying it for less than the advertised price and took it home. It’d dirty and dusty. Someone either varnished it and goofed or was trying to make it look distressed, but all the parts are there and it does work. Just needs some TLC and maintenance.
You’ve met my looms – Inga, Babette & Ol’ Bessie before. Now, let me introduce you to Helga. She is a Rognvaldson wheel made in Canada. I’ll be doing more research on her soon, but she was created by John Rognvaldson who moved to Canada from Iceland and her design is what they call a modified Icelandic style.
I am already in love with Helga and I don’t even know how to spin yet!
Trying out the home-built loom. So amazing that we made something that, actually, works the way it’s supposed to. Boggles the mind!
We’ve been going through a serious family situation. The major issue has been dealt with and no longer lives here. We’ve been working at reclaiming our home. Lots of cleaning and tossing out of stuff. Catharsis is a good thing. It is starting to feel like ours once again.
Stress really has a way of stifling one’s creativity. Lately, building the loom (https://fiberninja.wordpress.com/2015/08/05/who-knew-we-could-build-a-loom/) is about all we could do. It’s been sitting here with only its warp on since the beginning of August. Bare strings. Now it’s time to ‘get my art on’.
The art room is calling. Wish me luck. I’m going in.
Posted in Art, Family, Weaving
Tagged art, cloth, Craft, Creativity, family, Fiber, Loom, Reclaiming, Stress, weaving