Monday, October 31, 2011

Intarsia and Fair Isle knitting class

Want to learn color knitting? I'll be teaching two colorwork techniques—Fair Isle (stranded knitting) and Intarsia—in a class starting Thursday, November 10 for 3 sessions. Contact Chattanooga State at 697-3100 to register.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Begining Quilting class successes

Ana chose bright, happy prints and stripes
with her daughter, Sophie, in mind.
Another group of people have joined the ranks of quilters after successfully completing my Beginning Quilting by Machine class this month. The classic Churn Dash block took on different personalities through the quiltmaker's choice of fabrics, prints, thread color and quilting designs.

Congratulations, quilters, on all your sharp points, even borders and especially the originality in your quilting designs! Your hard work has paid off with beautiful results. Welcome to the extensive quilting family.
The floral border and small check sashing accentuates
Frances' collection of 30s fabrics in her scrappy quilt.
Janet quilted minaret shapes in the borders of her quilt
to echo the images in the fabric.
The rich eggplant Churn Dashes contrasts beautifully with
Nancy's choice of a fall harvest print in the border.
Martha created a focal point with an
unexpected print in the midst of her solid fabric blocks.
Jenny's yummy red-white-and-green color scheme reminds me
of a candy shop! This happy quilt is going to a lucky granddaughter.
 Here is a slide show of their 5 week journey.

Friday, October 28, 2011

ATCs: Inside/Outside

Inside/Outside. Which came first?
As  usual, we had various viewpoints and interpretations of this month's ATC (Artist Trading Card) theme, "Inside/Outside."

The last ATC Swap for 2011 is next month with the theme "What did we do before we had ___?!" Oh, so many things come to mind on this one.

Thanks to all the wonderful and gifted artists who share their talents and creativity in these swaps. Each card is a gift and it's so much fun finding those squishy envelopes in the mailbox each month.

Here are this month's gifts.
Left: "Inside/Outside"  Right: "The Self"

Left: "Inside/Outside" 
Right: "Right side/Wrong side; Knit side/Purl side"
 And, anyone who has a pet can relate to this one (below).
"Annie, do you want to be inside or outside?"  "Meow" (yes)
"Annie's Choice"

And, here is Lisa's hand crafted note card that accompanied her ATCs. "Happiness held is the seed; happiness shared is the flower." Happiness shared is ATCs.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Bad taste from Ketner's Mill Fair

Bad taste at this year's Ketner's Mill Fair.
For over a quarter of a century, members of my fiber arts guild, the Riverbend Fiber Arts Guild, have provided free demonstrations on carding and spinning fiber at the Ketner's Mill Country Fair. Guild members pack up their spinning wheels, rovings, tools and samples to travel to the McDonald farm in Whitwell, TN (for some, it's over 60 miles one way) to arrive in the cold, damp and misty morning to set up their stations before fair visitors arrive. Over the past two years, members even added to the merriment and fair-like atmosphere by transporting their alpacas and angora rabbits to the fair. This is part of the guild's outreach program to educate the public on the fiber arts and the yarn that is produced from the downy soft fleece of these animals. As was advertised on this web site as well as the guild's site, we planned to participate again this year. But, shortly after our arrival, we were subjected to an unprofessional and unwarranted confrontation.

Unfortunately, the wonderful woman who helped found and formerly directed the event (and who was our guild's contact for 25+ years) is no longer involved. This year, a woman coordinating activities was carrying a personal grudge against one of our guild members. This woman insisted that the farm's owner tell the guild member to leave. The owner, upon confronting our member, said he didn't know nor want to know the reason, but said that his employee was so distraught and upset that she [his employee] could not function and perform her assigned tasks.

If that wasn't enough, this disgruntled woman continued her disruptive, childish behavior throughout the day with persistent nagging and complaining to the guild's president about the guild's tent, the space for the demonstrators and other inconsequential issues. This petty and annoying behavior only underlined this employee's lack of people skills, professionalism and common courtesy that one would think important in a job that interfaces with the public.

So, what do you think of a nearly-60-year-old woman behaving like this at a public event at which she is employed? Of the thousands of people attending the event, can you imagine that the presence of one person could elicit such immaturity, emotional instability and unprofessionalism?
  • Should an apology be made to the guild for the havoc and ill will she inflicted? 
  • Should an apology be made to the guild member for the public embarrassment to which she was subjected? 
  • Perhaps this employee should be "told to leave" a job for which she is obviously unqualified. Would you want an employee so unstable representing your business or handling sales of your product? 
  • Comments?
Although the BBQ, fried pies and kettle corn might be tasty, this year's Ketner's Mill experience left a bad taste in my mouth, as well as the mouths of several of my fellow guild members. There is a new fiber festival that is making its debut this November near Cleveland, TN. My guild has been invited. Perhaps the guild should give all its support to a venue where guild members are treated with courtesy, respect and are appreciated for what they bring to the plate.

Friday, October 14, 2011

I Love Yarn Day

Today, October 14 is "I Love Yarn Day." Here are a few hanks I recently hand-dyed at a dye workshop with my guild. Any day with yarn is a good day!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Hairpin Lace demonstration—a traditional technique using today's fashion-forward fibers

Hairpin Lace scarf
My fiber arts guild, the Riverbend Fiber Arts Guild, will have a tent at the Ketner's Mill Country Fair this weekend, October 15-16.

Guild members will be doing demonstrations on spinning, carding and weaving and I'll be working with my hairpin lace loom. Come out to the fair and visit us at our tent, located next to the old mill building.

Hairpin lace became popular in the Victorian era. It requires a few simple tools—a hairpin lace "loom," a crochet hook and some yarn or thread. The process of making hairpin lace is rhythmic, easy to learn and master and can be soothing and therapeutic. Children and adults can do it and you can have a fun and fashionable scarf (see photo) in less than an hour.

A hairpin lace loom and lace items made with multiple strands of yarn.
You can use one or combine multiple strands of yarn for your project. Have fun with some of the great novelty yarns on the market today—fur, eyelash, glitter, boucle, nubby, etc. The photo above shows the loom with a piece made from a fun fur and a yarn with metallic highlights. Below is what the lace looks like when it come off the loom.

Visit the Riverbend Fiber Arts Guild tent at the Ketner's Mill Fair this weekend. Guild members will have hand crafted fiber art pieces, hand spun yarns, fibers and hairpin lace kits available for purchase. Pick up some great items for holiday gifts or for yourself. Learn hairpin lace making—a classic technique with a modern twist.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Steve Jobs, 1955 - 2011

My Mac is sad and my heart is heavy. We have lost a visionary, a creative genius and an inspiring and amazing man. He will be greatly missed.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

ATCs: Only so much will fit

Where is your over abundance? What is your overflowing collection? How do you cram 5 lb. of "stuff" into a 2 lb. sack? In the September ATC (Artist Trading Card) Swap with the theme "Only so much will fit," artists showed how they pile it, squeeze it and stuff it into baskets, bins, spaces and stashes.
Left: "Only so much will fit in my basket."
Right: "Only so much will fit... on a 2.5 x 3.5 card"
One of the new traders writes this about her card (below left): "Only so much (news, forest and the tree itself) will fit on a 2.5 x 3.5 inch card. Acrylic paint covers newsprint followed by a Tsukineko inked forest stamp. A commercial handmade paper—Lokta—is the tree trunk and grass. The tiny leaves are punched from leftover scraps of papers batik dyed in a class [at John C. Campbell Folk School], resulting in unique colors on each leaf. Like many things in life, this card is best viewed in a sunbeam because there—it sparkles!"
Left: "Only so much will fit"
Right: "Can only hold so much"
Left: "How much will fit?"
Right: "Yarn Stash"
One of the ATC artists is a prolific scrapbooker and greeting card artist. I periodically get one of her lovely creations (and a cheery note inside) accompanying her ATCs. Thanks, Lisa! Your cards are great.
A patriotic note card made by Lisa.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...