Saturday, February 26, 2011
Kicking into gear
Estrella War, the SCA event I went to last week, was absolutely marvelous. It was a week long party with 3000 of my closest friends, including folks that I really only get to see once a year. And I got to help out at the period demo center on Friday morning, talking to scads of grade school age kids about what our ancestors went through to make clothing. I think they were most impressed by the idea of the pink/purple color of the yarn that we dyed with cochineal, especially when I explained that cochineal was bugs that you find on prickly pear cactus around here. Color from squished up bugs is just the thing to grab the attention of bored grade school age kids--especially the boys.
But now Estrella is over, and I've almost got resulting laundry and dishes done. I was feeling kind of let down and at loose ends, coming off of the high that that event gives me. I wasn't quite sure the direction I wanted to go...and then my husband came home yesterday to tell me that he had lost his job. Which is actually probably going to be good for him personally, but the timing seriously sucks.
Well, I have a direction now. I've been letting the Etsy shop slide over the past few months as I worked on the fabric for the Estrella arts display. Now it is time to kick the Tangible Daydreams business back into high gear, so I can make more of a contribution to the household than just my life drawing modeling gives. Over the next while, I'll be putting in many more hours in the studio, and listing lots of items.
For instance, yesterday I dug out the golf balls and the wool roving, and made up four new sets of juggling balls. These are actually my best sellers out of the Etsy shop, and my stock was getting low.
While those were drying, I also started to rummage through my stash of shawl yarn. Before Estrella, a friend found me a batch of Red Heart 'Baby Clouds' yarn. I put it aside at the time, but dragged it out yesterday and started matching colors. I decided on a pretty pastel peach and some bright white, and mapped out a two color plaid on the triangle loom. I've gotten the weaving part done, and now I'm working on cutting and tying the fringe. I'm actually rather pleased with the way this one is turning out. The colors make for a very subtle and delicate pattern, which I could totally see as a wedding shawl. The yarn is a little thicker than the Lion Brand Homespun that I often use, so it is packing in a little tighter and making a more stable weave. But it isn't as tight as some that I've tried, so it should still drape well once I get it off the loom.
(Ignore the dark shadow down the middle of the weave. That is the support for the easel behind the shawl.)
I should be able to get that shawl finished up tomorrow. Then I've got several more shawls worth of the same yarn to work up, as well as yarn enough for a dozen or so pairs of socks. Oh, and while I was at Estrella I picked up a copper focal pendant that will make a great center bit for one of my gourds. Come to think of it, I probably have enough materials in my stash to work steadily for a month or so, without having to buy supplies.
Now, it is time to quit freaking out, buckle down, and do the work. I need to have my crafting finally take the step from a hobby into a real, bill-paying business.
Deep breath...Ready? Go.