Saturday, November 16, 2019

Something New!

Am I putting the goat before the cart?
Yes.

You see, I've been designing and carving stamps, and then using them to print on fabric. A nice thing to come of all of this... many friends have asked me to open a shop, make the napkins, aprons, and tea towels available for purchase. I even took a special request to carve a goat!

I've been busy and I've managed to print a good amount, and I would like to make them available before Thanksgiving. Gee, nothing like creating my own holiday rush! So, without a shop, or a shop name, or mailing envelops, before I figure out PayPal, or Venomo or Carrier Chickens... I am about to launch the business end of a little cottage industry. I am hoping that by announcing this now, and sharing some previews, I will push myself into figuring out the bureaucracy and formal aspects of being a working artist. Another hope is that some clever and dear friends may share their tips and suggestions for handling sales, pricing, packing, exfoliating, and reducing fine wrinkles. Just kidding about exfoliating, but I could probably use some ironing tips... 100% cotton is hard to keep pressed!

I am going to share some samples of what I have been making, but I am not taking any orders until I can be certain of how I will take payments, and handle deliveries. So! Before I am OPEN I will announce an official day and time, and accept orders, then.

"Buffet" napkins! They are a generous 20" x 20", 100% cotton. There will be a few sets of 5, and mostly sets of 6.



Alex designed and carved the dragonfly. The patience! He printed them flitting across the napkins, in different directions. They look amazing!

All of these are our own designs, hand carved, and hand printed.



Dish cloth, tea towel, chicken scarf? These would be fun to add embroidery to. They are 27" x 27", 100% cotton, and a very nice weight. Sometimes these are called "flour sack" and can be very thin, and not square... these are well finished, and thick(er).

I am really happy with the weight, structure, and feel of these towels.

Bee and honeycomb on a big, handy tea towel.

These three stamps are inspired by papel picado, the Mexican art of paper cutting.

This bee, with some honeycomb, is printed on a 100% cotton, wrap apron. I love how the wide straps of this can be pull over-head, and cross in the back, so there are no apron strings to tie. Also, it has 2 nice sized pockets in the front.

The apron is a nice weight, and looks and feels like natural linen. I haven't taken it off since modeling it.

Designing, carving, and printing has been a lot of fun, and I appreciate how encouraging friends have been. I will be back with an update as soon as possible!

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Thoughtful Consumer

Sometimes I wonder whether I am being thoughtful, or simply over thinking, perhaps obsessing. Maybe you can help me... either make a reasonable decision, or obsess.


Last night I was changing our bed sheets. I am very close to fully accepting that we need new sheets. We are down to one set, with some small tears, and a top sheet that that I bought... mmmmm, in 2001. Seems like just when the flannel is worn to a perfect softness and has become comfortingly familiar, that's when it gets thready and shreds, badly. I have been known to "patch" sheets, but, it's not a guaranteed thing, and really ugly..

Yeah.

You know what? I think I am definitely definitely over-thinking and obsessed. Our sheets are flippin' old and practically in tatters, and it's time to buy new ones.

September 2003, when we lived in the country, and had our first chickens... our El Rancho days.

Same for the quilt. It too was purchased in 2001, and it's so frayed and worn, I don't think it will hold through another wash!

What am I going to do? Seriously... it's very distressing to me, for one reason: I love this quilt, and I can still conjure the joy of ordering it, having it on our bed, appreciating the prints, it's weight, how nicely it fits on our bed. I love this quilt! The other reason I am concerned is that it's really quite large, and too far gone to donate, and throwing it away feels like a terrible waste of materials. It's very heavy. If I repaired it, it would have to be a matter of using the whole thing as the batting of a whole new bed cover, and that would make it even heavier... too heavy for our washer, I am sure.

Ugh.

Uhhhhhngh.

Do you know what's going to happen? I am going to be fixated on this, and the quilt will stay on the bed long past a reasonable time, while I try to come up with an ethical, environmentally, economical and aesthetically gratifying solution. And buying sheets will take me forever, too, unless I see the perfect print, on sale, at Target.

Me, thinking about shopping for bedding.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Our Fall Colors





Not my garden, but definitely inspiration and goals! I saw all of these on a walk... a slow walk. It's been a slow week. And I almost cancelled all of my plans, but fortunately, I got some physical therapy, and helpful suggestions for pain management. Adjusting my sails, and rethinking everything, helped me regain some peace, and sense.

When I couldn't paint big, I went back to some old works and added a little color.


Happiest of all, I decided I would not cancel the picnic we had planned. When "life happens," and there are setbacks to our health, disruptions, it always make me especially sad to forego the good stuff, and skip on happy plans. I had invited everyone to bring their own lunch, meet us at the park, and hang out. I reasoned that there was so little for me to do that it would be a shame to call it off. I brought pillows and a blanket and the conviction to relax and take it easy... and I could not be happier about that decision! We shared beautiful weather, surrounded by trees, and hints of the season, with laughter, some crafting, a bit of pickle ball, lots to eat, and a darling pup (Hello, Akira! Everyone loves you, Akira.) Geoff rode his bicycle over, and there were trees to climb, a turtle crossing, shade and sun, great talks, and great company. With each family bringing their picnic, and all the sharing, no single person was carrying the load. In the end, I felt invigorated and ready for another picnic! Maybe it was the forest bathing? For sure it was easy quality time, face to face with friends, that set my mind and heart right for the week ahead.


Maria~


Grace~


Amira and Maria, building fairy houses and ships~

With Leo, too~

Bex~

Geoff, Leslie, and Ido~




Carol teaching Bex how to sew French knots~


Michael and Grace~



Natalie, Stacy, and Diana~


Simon, Ido, and Leslie~

Lucas, Diana (crocheting F-bombs!... I need a tutorial), Akira, and Geoff~




Corey and Max~

Maria, Corey, and Max~

Now... the thing is to remember that this was easy and totally worthwhile, and that I should not let 2 years go by, again, before having another meet in the park picnic with friends.