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Monday, October 29, 2007

Great Polymer Clay Workshops!

I finally got some photos out of Sonja's camera from Inspiration 2007 in Cleveland last month. The ladies in the Button Making workshop did will in experimenting with polymer clay for buttons for their knit (and sewn) creations.

I had everyone choose four half blocks of colour, so they had four colours to work with, 1oz each, but with instructions to share and swap. Later I had some extra so they were able to pick up some Pearl, Gold and such.

Isabel here got some hook and eye 'eyes' from my stash and made a lovely set of shank buttons. I hope she has a garment in mind as she did a beautiful job, I think she had some yarn in mind, hence the blend of colours in her buttons.

Here we have some mixing of black, copper and a russet shade which she may have mixed herself.

Then she curved them a little and laid them in a folded 3"x 5" file card and we fired them that way. They came out beautifully!

Here's Rose helping a newbie get use to the PC and giving her hints and tips on using her tools and creating using her colours. With two busy classes of 19 and 16 I sure needed the extra pair of eyes and hands!

It was also a great chance for an exercise in colours and putting them together. I was surprised at the colours chosen, I ran out of some and had lots of others left over.... like purple, even though I had a fairly even balance of blocks of colours.

Rose is well versed in polymer clay but we work differently as she makes jewellery and I buttons mostly and some pins for my garments. So she had different information to throw into the mix for the participants, like using Pearl-Ex and such.

This past weekend's class here in K'town went well and was a great way to spend a really rainy
Saturday! With 9 participants I gave a demo first to give them an idea of how I work and the process. I gave them some hints and tips to be noted down along with some handouts and then let them go with tools and this time 8 colours.

I cut the clay into quarters and every one started with eight chunks in differnt colours, later they were able to pick up more in different colours

As these women were fibre artists and not really
clothing people they played more sort of freefall! Putting colours together, running them through the pasta maker and seeing what came out and where it might go from there. Here you see two pieces by Robin who ended up doing these tiny scenes, we loved the 'ocean' (above) and then her 'sunset'... I think it looks like a beautiful one.

These two pieces are about the size of a large postage stamp!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Button Making Workshop

This Saturday Ocober 27th, I will be conducting a button making workshop here in Kingston from 10am - 3pm.

Email Robin for details if you would like to participate, there is still some room.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Not Knitting...Wheeee!!!

This photo illustrates what I was doing yesterday rather than knitting..... well I did get work done later but this was taken during a visit with an old friend who is a bike freak! We used to date way back in high school and he did me the honour of breaking up with me when he got his first bike (a cherry red Triumph if I remember).

No I didn't drive, though I do have my motorcycle license (use to have a small one back in my 20's) but this is the biggest bike I've been on and I hadn't been on one in years. I used to drive another old boyfriend's Honda 350 back in the day! My brother had a BMW R90S and took me for a ride but wouldn't let me drive it. This was my first time on a Harley!

Being a beautiful day it was great for momentarily escaping from chemo and cancer.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Fibre Friends' Work

Over the weekend I visited with a couple of friends, one in person and one on a long distance call with the internet involved. They have done some lovely work so I'll show it here.

First there is this lovely box made and embroidered by my East Coast friend Deirdre. I just drooled over it and would love to see it in person one day. It is embroidered over Dupioni silk.

The other one is a beautiful baby outfit, jacket and booties, knit by my buddy Rose. Wouldn't that just look soooo lovely in a woman's size? I just happen to love things knit in all over garter stitch.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Studio Tour Sunday

Well, we've had a good weekend, lots of folk showed up on Saturday and sales were made, pamphlets handed out and lots of chat, hot apple cider, sushi and cookies.

Today is quieter so we're taking time to explore the internet. Web sites on knitting, polymer clay and also looking at Etsy as I would like to set up a 'store' where I might move odd items like samples and such. Stumbled across a great one about men's knitting.

We've had folk from Finland, Australia, Britain and towns around. it's been homecoming weekend here in Kingston at Queen's University so the town has been filled with alumni sporting old Queen's jacket with various dates on them, I saw '92 last night which isn't far back but I've seen 60's an earlier in previous years. I went out to collect our sign from the corner and had to wait while the Queen's Golden Gaels pipe band and cheerleaders did their thing in the road just outside The Ports (Portsmouth House pub) which is the nearest pub to the football field where Queens played Waterloo yesterday.... I still don't know who won! But the people in the red tunics and kilts looked happy.

Here are photos of Georgia and me with our respective work.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Tour Food

I will once again be having a preview evening tonight in my studio and it's the wine and cheese type (the rest of the weekend is hot apple cider and cookies) so when my friend Harvey offered to show me how to make sushi I was hot to learn something new.

Now I've never been known for my culinary skills .... well not until I remarried at 39 then something kicked in, but I do love to add new things to my repertoire. Apparently I did well and here is a pic of my first plate of California rolls. I put in red pepper, avocado, carrot, English cuke and imitation crab. We polished off the whole plate and I have some pot aside for this evening.

If you're coming there's lots of California rolls!!!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Town & Country Studio Tour

One of my cardis in the window display of Kingston Frame Works.

This weekend is the Town and Country Studio Tour in Kingston and I'm looking around my studio and wondering if I can ever tidy it up!!!! Then...after the tour is over can I ever find the stuff I tidied away! Same old problem, I've been doing studio tours for about twelve years and I still find it a daunting task.....but I won't stop, I love having folk visit my studio.... especially when it is tidy!

Anyway, when I get that done and we get set up I love the whole weekend, people come by with fall leaves on their shoes, windblown hair and I serve them hot apple cider and chat, laugh, catch up and they shop. Whether it's something they can take home or perhaps order for next year or learn about how I do what I d0 it's all part of the studio package.

This year as last, with my friend Georgia's help we will have an evening preview on Friday night 6 -8pm with wine, nibbles and even goodie bags. If you live in Kingston area please drop by.

........well.... back to sorting out my stuff so I can see the floor!!!!

Monday, October 08, 2007

In My Element.

Monday night in my studio and the new fall TV programs are on. The one I was watching is Project Runway Canada.

It's on Slice TV, hosted by Iman and Brian Bailey and filmed in Toronto.

I've watched Project Catwalk UK, Project Runway (put onto it by my step daughter) and it's always the last hour that I work in my studio so I'm usually sewing a sweater together, or doing some hand work (so the machine doesn't drown out what I want to here on TV) at the ironing board. I feel like I'm a fly on the wall in the contestants' studio (pictured here) and it's like having work mates, except these ones are often immature in their work practices with others in their workroom. Also I'm amazed at what some of them come up with given the brief of that day.

This day, the premiere, they were told to rifle through some other contestant's personal luggage and take four pieces. They were to make an outfit out of these four pieces.....aaaaaarrrrgh! Someone cried 'don't take my cashmere'. If it were me I'd have run like the wind on that second thought.... well maybe. The next day when they were to start, each was given the opportunity to take back one piece, one girl got to get her leather jacket back!!!! Heaven knows what would have happened to it otherwise.

It's a great program to watch for inspiration and to see creation in progress, makes my solitude in my studio feel like a part of a group for an hour.

Oh and there's the bitchiness.... and that's just the guys!!!

Friday, October 05, 2007

Flowers and Fur.

Well, Sunday at the Run for the Cure was a great day, I ended up eating chicken breast for supper and started to feel good as I usually do heading into every third Monday - day four after chemo.....then Monday arrived and everything fell apart again. I felt I had had chemicals poured into me, everything smelt, tasted of chemo drugs my other half called the nurse, I said he was over concerned but she was really needed. I got sick again along with a short black out...scary. She stayed with me for two hours until hubby had picked up some needles for her to give me the IM version of the anti nausea drug.....and so on.... and so on. Anyway, this is me the next day feeling marginally better posing with a bouquet of roses and baby's breath sent by an old friend in Britain. She had remembered I was married with pink roses and baby's breath!!!

Then another dear friend, painter Vera Donefer, (mother to Laura Donefer - glass artist)stopped by with some beautifully coloured mums! How cheery these flowers are.

I was also sent a really neat kit to knit myself a hat for the cold weather. Susan Watson Ellis (jeweler). It came with a pattern but I, of course, want to knit it my way. You are supposed to work the fur and the slub cotton in alternate stitches but I'd like to try working the fur first so that it's face framing (as hair is) and work the cotton, perhaps mixed with some wool for warmth, for the rest of the hat. It's a lovely colour and will go well with my black winter jacket..... if I can figure out what I want to do with it. A set of circular bamboo needles came with but they are somewhat short so I'll seek out a longer set in my studio so I can measure around my head... Susan is a non knitter.

This all came from JanKnit's Studio in Haliburton Ontario. We were up there last Summer but I must have missed it....not like me at all!!!! Even my husband heat seeks yarn stores after hanging around me for a couple of decades!

Well, now that I've declared the ownership of this yarn and the Paula Lishman fur yarn I will have to post pics of the hat when I get done!