Wednesday, October 31, 2007

A Frenzy (hardly) of Finished Objects

At last I finished the Montego Bay Scarf, sans fringe. It was the fringe that was holding up the show. The scarf has been knit and blocked for a couple weeks, waiting for me to muster the motivation to add all that fringe. But enough is enough, I wore the scarf around the house yesterday and decided it's perfectly lovely without the fringe. And since it's finally getting to be scarf and sweater wearing weather here in Austin I wove the ends and declared it FIN!

Last week while the other half was in Austria I finished The One Skein Wonder Shrug by Glampyre. I used Blue Sky Alpaca's Dyed Cotton, quickly becoming my favorite yarn. The shrug is cute, and fast to knit. The only trouble is it was also itty-bitty. All is not lost though, I'll give it as a gift to someone much smaller than I, someone who will love it, or at least pretend to, and I'll make myself another a couple sizes larger this time. In fact I've already started.

Have a safe and happy Halloween.

Friday, October 26, 2007

I took the pledge

This morning I took the pledge, the pledge to buy handmade this holiday season and to encourage others to do so also. It wasn't really hard to take this pledge, I buy mostly handmade anyway. Or make things. I do it for myself, and I do it for my gift giving.

I've said it before (right here on this blog) and I'll say it again - I believe in the crafting revolution, I believe that we as crafters, and the people who support them, can create an economy outside of the big box marketplace. I believe everyone should LIVE ARTFULLY and BUY HANDMADE!

Think about it, buying handmade often means getting a higher quality product. Buying handmade means your getting something mostly unique, something that' not quite the same as everyone else's. It also often means buying locally, or at the very least more locally, and that my friends is good for the environment.

So I ask each of you to at a minimum follow the link to The Buy Handmade Consortium, and show your support, buy handmade, if not everything, at least a little bit. Thanks!
I Took The Handmade Pledge!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Pomp and Circumstance

Aaron Johnson (Rescued Mutt no. 3) graduated from Basic Training at the Lee Mannix Center for Canine Behavior this past week. Needless to say I'm proud. He was the youngest pup in his class, he's just 5 months, and pretty much off the curve. And it's not just me who thinks so either, so does the trainer and everyone else in class. He'd have made the honor roll if there was such a thing. Congratulations, Good Boy Aaron.

Obviously I love all my dogs, they are all good dogs, but I love them all for different reasons and in different ways, because they are all very different dogs. For example; Aaron is the smartest, he's also the baby of the family, and therefore the silliest. Layla is the neediest, the neurotic one. She's also the most elegant, and gentlest dog I've ever known. She's a lady. She has a way with making other people and other dogs feel at ease, everyone who meets her loves her. The Mike is the affectionate one, the most attentive and loving. He's the giant lap dog. He's also a complete meat head, which cracks me up.

One thing all my dogs have in common is we train together. Next up for Aaron will be an Honors course and his Canine Good Citizenship Test. Layla and Mike both do Agility and will be trying Rally Obedience after the New Year. Mike has already passed his CGC Test. Way to go Mike! Layla has tried and failed - she is too attentive to the "stranger" and the "strange dog approaching". Mostly I like that she fails the test because she's too sweet, and we'll continue to take the test from time to time, just for fun.

Training isn't just an hour a week for us, it's an everyday thing. Everyday we walk, and every walk is a training opportunity. Everyday we play, and practice, and think together. Everyday we take advantage of whatever opportunity we have to spend quality time together. We do it because it's fun. We do it because it makes me proud and them confident. We do it because it brings us closer together. We do it because a good dog is just that much nicer to be around. We do it because there is nobody I'd rather spend my time with than these three good dogs.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Be the Change: Art Clothing As Expression

As I mentioned ever so briefly in a previous post I am participating in a wearables show at Ripple River Gallery in Minnesota. The show - Be the Change: Art Clothing as Expression opens October 17th with an artist reception on October 20th, and will stay up thru December 9th.

I've known about the show for some time and have had several projects that either I decided were too ordinary, or that I didn't love enough. However, most recently I decided that a shawl of my own design from this bundle of color and delicious fibers was going to be the ticket.

The gathering of colors and fibers

The finished object is not only extra-ordinary, I also love it. The color combination and fibers all worked beautifully together. The shawl has a beautiful hand, and drapes well. It will be a pleasure to wear. This was my contribution to the show.

The shawl close up

The shawl full length

If you happen to be in MN, you should try and find your way to the Ripple River Gallery. This show happens to be just in time for fall colors, and I'm sure will feature many innovative pieces from some very talented artists.