Sunday, October 02, 2022

my turn to catch up


I was going to do a time-lapse or speeded-up video of this process, but really, there's not much action. Just me making choices on the fly. 

I have a square yard of linen toweling that I hand hemmed on all four sides. It has just enough texture to grab and hold like a felt board.

I fold the linen base in half because my working surface is small. I take pieces of cloth from the big bin and lay them out on the linen like this, rolling the base up as needed. Then I take all the pieces off, stack them tidy and repeat the process to get a full yard of scraps.

A quartet of threads is selected to tuck inside the cloth. 

MB, these will be on their way to you tomorrow.

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Grateful to be missed


Once again I'm trying to make friends with the seed stitch.  This was just a little something to hold on to and fiddle with while listening to the storm news. 
I've already taken the snips to it once - the red patch was stitched to the wrong side of the purple base at first. 

Now that it's clear we won't miss a sunny day to Ian, I'm going to set it aside before I do any more damage. No heart in it. Saving that for the page.

I have a busy schedule coming up in October. Accepting invitations and obligations as they come without worrying about a work schedule is fun even if the first thing I do each morning is check to see what day of the week it is.

The beasts were acting up a little. Lots of murdering going on what with the chilly nights reminding them about stocking up for winter. I pull into the driveway and before I can turn the car off, Bailey jumps through the window for his afternoon portion of love. It's always nice to remember that they have no worries, just goals to be grabbed, moment to moment. 


Thursday, September 22, 2022

Summer's shadow

We don't get too many sunrises around here, but Colin did a double shift and grabbed this one. The beautiful weather persisted and belied the sailor's warning. 

The mailbox garden is set up to bless our senses with gardenias and butterfly bush blooms until we have some hard frost.
Christmas gardenias will always be magical for this Yankee gal.

Everyone who ordered bundles should be getting them by Friday. While I was making them up, I pulled some drama to keep in the River basket until I'm moved to thread a needle. I've made a mess of fancy damask in the past so I'm going to let them ripen in the closet. 

It's the Autumnal Equinox. I savor it one day at a time because I grew up in the Hudson Vallery with a short, capricious fall.  My birthday is smack in the middle of October. On some birthdays, I could still go swimming in the lake. Other years, frost crackled underfoot making sneakers treacherous.

Summer looks back on herself and smiles at the miracles she's wrought. Bright wings. Water in the air. Bounty.
Fall puts his arm around her, pulls her close, and whispers,
"Hang with me a while. You won't regret it."

Sunday, September 18, 2022

The cure

It's day four of this malady that a second test said is NOT covid, but I have my theory.

My body, equipped with vaccinations and booster, recognizes this invader and deals with it, but imperfectly.  The Rona symptoms (respiratory struggle, no sense of smell) come and go within hours. In between, it manifests as a five-alarm head cold.

Nothing for it but to sit out in the fresh air and sunshine and hand wash chunks of cloth. And nap when needed. 

Washing soda ash solution and excess dye out of cotton damask is labor intensive but tactilely satisfying. 

On the first pass, an orange-sized ball of cloth feels slimy and will jump out of your hands and splat color on your bare feet.

 Add just a drop of Dawn to the second pass and trouble doubles. The damask weave and the density of the fiber whip the detergent into foam.  

A hot water pass calms everything down and soothes my paws. Back to cold water for the final two or three passes to make sure the water runs clear. 

Then I snap them out and hang them over whatever; lawn chairs, railings, the old thyme and lavender shrubs (you may smell them.)

Then, the next day I found that a lot of these had dried to a pale mess so I set up for overdyeing. What caused the color loss? Old dye? Not enough time in the soda ash? There's no telling. 
 Washing these out today and then most of it will get blended into the Hot Scraps inventory. 

Friday, September 16, 2022

Next gen art

 I was sick enough this morning to cause me to take a covid test. Counting on that negative to be fact because I have stuff to do.

Charlie's school had a digital learning day today. As if all of the second grade wasn't enough. Five hours in a semi-darkened room at the laptop. Fifteen-minute assignments drag on past an hour because he hunts and pecks. 

The worst out of the way, I found a Learn To Type for Kids game and left him to it. He's delighted that his fingers have brains. What bothers me is that he'll never learn cursive. I will teach him his signature. With my favorite fountain pen. Eventually.

It was really fine out today. After the traditional lunch trip to Sonic, we hatched out the dirty threads. The Cassiels.  The reluctant angel from Wings of Desire. 

They were pretty murky looking at first. The carrying cloths all circles and stripes. 

Hopefully dry by this time tomorrow.