Monday, June 19, 2017


Stopping to smell the beautiful roses (which smell wonderful.)

Saturday, June 10, 2017

knitting, and other almost-summer activities

Today, I finished painting, and then planted, the flower box I've wanted ever since we built the shed.  Unfortunately, it's been long enough since we built the shed that it needs a new coat of paint, as well! 

We get eggs from a friend with lots of chickens, and made scones today.  We had a nice morning in the shade, including fresh scones, cherries, tea, coffee or milk, and a few games of checkers. 
And now, I will be attempting to finish reassembling the screen door I took apart last week.  Then I might have time for weaving in a few of the thousands of ends on the Oriental Jacket I am working on.  The knitting is done, at least!  

What are you working on this weekend?  Finishing any projects?  Reading any good books?  

Friday, June 2, 2017

artist: Scott, luthier

Back in January, I spent some time with Scott, a luthier.  

You might wonder what a luthier is; he is a maker of stringed instruments.
At one time, I had a boyfriend with a roommate whose step-dad made guitars.  When I started my artists and craftsmen series, I knew I had to include him.  My boyfriend, (who has stuck around many years after marrying me) thought it was a good idea; so here's a little of what I experienced on a wintry day with a luthier who makes stringed things by hand.  Literally, he carved on an archtop guitar while we talked.  

He built the guitar and the harp in the first picture, most pieces carved from blocks of wood.  Other things he does by hand: fills out receipts (on paper), writes books (in notebooks), plays guitar.  And I will admit, I was pretty enamored to meet someone who still has a phone that is completely attached to the wall. 

I really enjoyed talking to this kindred spirit; we discussed synesthesia (another word you probably haven't heard before,) the whys of art, and all there is to enjoy about having a face-to-face conversation.  I had a deep appreciation for his relationship to his work: everything made custom for exact purposes; jars of nuts and other bits of pieces, saved for some future need.  And no internet at his house - none needed (although he was proud of his daughter's blog.)  

spare nuts
instruments ready for pick-up
 harp detail

At one point, a customer stopped by to pick up his instrument, and having no idea why I was there, assured me that Scotty is a gem in the music world, and how lucky we were to find him.  

So now you know what a luthier is, and I hope if you need one, you find one as talented (and fun and interesting) as this guy!  

Friday, May 26, 2017

good things to come...

I think I might actually blog more efficiently if I were writing by hand; I love a good pen gliding along paper in swirls and dips.  

Anyway, I took an unintentional hiatus from blogging, there.  I did read some, and discover new ones, though, and I am happy to see so many people are still blogging in this era of Facebook and Instagram.  It takes more of an effort, doesn't it? to hunt out lovely blogs, but like many intentional acts, I find it brings a higher percentage of good results than whatever debris lands on my Facebook feed.  

The school year is ended and our garden is just in the beginning stages, so I find it is a good time to review my goals for the year, the season, and begin again.  In anticipation of good things to come:  

a new batch of vanilla extract in progress.  

Monday, February 20, 2017


February has been unseasonably mild.  
It's President's Day.  Everyone has the day off except, well, my day is the same as usual.  

I spent the morning writing up a new hat pattern for Windy Valley Muskox.  At shows, we often have customers ask whether we have men's patterns.  Many of our patterns could be unisex, depending on the color it's knit in, but this was designed with the guys in mind.  Of course, it would look equally nice on a woman, in my opinion.  Anyway, this one's photographed on a man, so hopefully that will answer the question!  

Once I get the pattern posted on Ravelry, I will come back and add a link.  For now, a few details and a picture:

Yarn:  WVM's Australian Merino in 7014 Bering Sea, and WVM's Luxury Blend in 7015 Celestial Blue
Needles:  US 3/3.25mm and US 4/3.5mm, both 16", and US 4 dpns.  
It's lined - the qiviut blend is on the inside for extra warmth and luxury.  
Project page:  on Ravelry.

I know it's so dark, but manly color, you know.  You can see a bit of shine around the edge where the qiviut blend, which includes silk, peeks over.  

The other project I worked on was pruning my raspberries.  As I said, it's been so mild here; it seemed wasteful to spend the whole day inside.  I love having my own fruit, even if it's a few days here, a few weeks there, and I thought it was probably time I looked a little further into care for the canes.  I read this article and watched this video, which say the same thing essentially, and then set to work.  Now I hope for a healthy bounty, come September.  

 last September:

One more tidbit, my friend Susan was featured in the March 2017 issue of American Quilter.  Wow!  Congrats, Susan!!

Monday, January 9, 2017

not quite 116 in 2016

I decided in favor of quality vs. quantity, this year.  At the end of last year (2015), I chose to round out my set with the best I had... it wasn't the worst but I did not to do that this time.  And there were some I just didn't want to shoot.  Here are some favorites from the this year's list.  

creature comforts 

                               a map

out of place



                              nature's jewels

                                    a gate

You can see the rest of my set here

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Rhinebeck 2016: New York Sheep and Wool Festival

hand-dyes drying at the fairground

Thanks to my work with Windy Valley Muskox, I had the opportunity to visit rural New York in October.  Famed and celebrated fiber gathering, New York Sheep and Wool, aka Rhinebeck almost defies description, there are just so many facets.  What I can tell you is that if you go, you'll definitely see fiber and yarn and sweaters, knitters, fantastic local food, yarn-related celebrities, and absolutely people knitting.  

And animals; you will definitely find animals!  

You can see more of my pictures from Rhinebeck here.
I would also recommend Glenna C's account here, and this fun video about Rhinebeck Sweaters.