31 October 2009


I am a bad blogger. I've neglected you all in favor of obsessively creating things for an upcoming bazaar I'm participating in. I'm itching to show you what I've been up to since there is quite a bit of it but its all in bits and pieces right now and its unassembled state makes it not so impressive. So we have to wait a bit on that.

In the meantime, it leaves me with very little to feed the blog with. So I've decided since today is Halloween to show you some pictures of what Halloween looks like here in Michigan and some of the creatures I share my studio with.

This morning I woke to the proper moody Halloween sky:

Took this photo about 10am so whoever ordered the creepy grey overcast sky did a good job. It is sufficiently eery.

It lightened up a little later in the day but not by much. Here's the view out the front porch:

The leaves are launching themselves off the trees like they are abandoning ship. Its making thick leaf carpets all over town:

And just in case you're wondering, when you are only 11" high, thick leaf carpets make your underbelly and leg fur all grungy should you decide its great fun to run full speed through a pile of them:

Dooley and the shower have a date tomorrow.

On the inside, my studio provides a year round Halloween vibe. (What can I say, this is my favorite time of year. If it was up to me, the way it looks today would be a permanent state.)

Here is a new piece that I'm working on, will probably end up in the bazaar:

A little on the dark side but hey, I can't be the only one digs these kinds of things so there is a possibility it will find a new home.

My skull collection gets a good dust off this time of year:

And while not creepy, he is a creature that hovers over my work table. Meet my supervisor, Marvin:

Michele from Eyembellishments made him for me. He's sitting on the head of another plushy on the monster board. (He's a little bossy.)

I'm having far too much fun with all the stuff I'm making. Anything that doesn't sell at the bazaar will be going into the two etsy shops I want to open by the end of the year. I need to take a little break though, my wrist is starting to hurt a little so that means a day or two of rest for it is in order.

Hope you all have a Happy Halloween and don't eat too much candy! (I recommend Reese's peanut butter cups if you feel the need to...)

25 October 2009

Where I Stand Sunday

The shape, color, smell all play against the edges of my imagination. It's a hungry idea, this portrait of a world that exists in a limbo of this season. It leaks to the surface once a year, engulfing a tired world in a burning madness of color so full it can only exist in the span of a hundred breaths.

Where I Stand is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing. Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on. The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell. (The project is now in its third year. Year One and Year Two can be found here.)

drawing in sand...

I seem to be finding a lot of cool videos posted on the pages of my facebook friends. This one is outstanding, its a little long but so worth watching the whole thing. Absolutely fantastic...

24 October 2009

how to pass a cold dim drizzly saturday...

Today is one of those days that begs for indoor activity. Temps rolled around in the 40's and it rained allllllll day. I had planned to go to a fiber festival today but when I woke up and couldn't figure out if it was still early morning (it wasn't, it was 9:30am but so overcast outside it still looked early), I decided to hibernate and venture out tomorrow.

Dooley hovered. I puttered. Here's some random:

1) NaNoWriMo is beginning again in about another week. I will be engaging in the madness once again, hopefully finally finishing what I started last year. Ignore any hysterical sobbing that might be coming from the general direction of Michigan.*

2) I began Christmas knitting today. (Repeat * statement from above.)

3) I am determined to give this blog a better look. I'm digging the three column look, but not the I've-been-stepped-on-by-an-elephant vibe. We are working to correct that, a professional has been contacted, bear with me...

4) My brother sent me an email today that Clive Owen is shooting a new movie and parts of it will be filmed in my hometown. I plan to gawk shamelessly and hopefully catch a glimpse of this man. I will need to decide in advance just how stupid I am willing to make myself look in order to view him.

5) I'm working on stock for an upcoming art show the fiber art group I belong to is putting on in about a month (more details to follow soon). I am obsessively creating little bitty things that I hope the general public will find appealing. If not, then I know what everyone is getting for Christmas. Its just nice to have my creative mojo back.

6) Tomorrow I clean the chaos that I created in the dining room over the past couple of months of having no energy to even attempt to stay organized. (Repeat * statement from above.)

7) Dooley was a fidgety little punk today. Chirping and pacing and just generally determined to step all over my last nerve. Luckily he uses his cuteness as a weapon and my irritation never lasts more then five seconds.

8) Dr. Pepper is good.

9) I tatted today. (Link provided for those of you who may confuse it with tatoos.) I'm beginning to wonder why I gravitate to incredibly tedious teeny tiny art forms as means of relaxation (tatting, lace knitting, embroidery...)...

10) My printer software automatically installs some crappy print-art-creation software that has installed a bar that floats on my desktop and directly links to their website. I've uninstalled the program, cussed, searched the user manual, cussed, and shot off a spiteful email to the offending software company yet the devil thing remains. Its making me twitch...it needs to go away...it needs to go away...it needs to go away...

One of the things I like best about this weather is all the blankets I get to pull out and bury myself under. There's a certain bliss to laying in bed all cozy and warm and calm. I imagine its how Dooley feels with all the fur he wears. In fact, they are calling my name now, must. obey...

20 October 2009

play me a tune...

I saw this on a friend's facebook page and proceeded to spend ten minutes torturing Dooley with continual replays. He was not impressed as I am but for a cookie he'll pretty well tolerate anything.

18 October 2009

Where I Stand Sunday - Two Year Anniversary


**This post marks the 104th Where I Stand Sunday post, marking the two year anniversary of the project. Many thanks to all of you who visit me every Sunday, hope you enjoy year three!

Where I Stand Sunday is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing. Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on. The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell. (You can view Year One of the project here and the gallery for this year here.)

15 October 2009

oh yeah, now i remember...

...this blog used to occasionally contain some artwork. Yeah, yeah, now I remember.

I apologize for the intense lack of, well....anything. There have been computer woes, and Dooley woes (another scratch on his eyeball) and just a general sense of woe. Not sure what my problem is but its been a bit on the annoying side so I figured no one wanted to listen to it.

Luckily boredom overcame me today and I finally did some stuff. The thing that was highest on my list of creative endeavors is getting some artwork made for selling. Which meant I had to deal with this:

That's the fabric I printed during Fabrications. Yes, its taken me this long to get around to washing it out. Apparently I was in no gigantic rush.

There was soaking in buckets:

Spraying obsessively to get the devil red dye to quit running:

And a couple hours later I had a washed and dried pile of artwork that was staring at me with great expectation:

I'm a huge fan of printed fabric, especially this type that produces short and sweet series of original prints. But I often find that they lack a focal point. I know many an artist is content with the product as an end result but I tend to treat them more as a base. So I pulled out half yard and chopped them all apart into individual pieces:

When I printed these I intended them to all stand alone as individual pieces. But seeing as how I'm almost as allergic to white as I am to pink, I set about filling in those spaces first:

And then I stared at it. And decided it needed more printing. So I did this:

Aaaaaaaaannnnnnddddd then I stared at it some more. It stared back.

And now I'm in the living room. Not quite sure what the next step is. I almost don't want to stitch on these but not sure yet. I know how they will be displayed and I'm satisfied with where I'm at with them so far but they've gotten stubborn. Good thing I have a separate studio, they can hang out there until I decide what to do with them.

It would seem these days that my studio is for the fabric and the coffee table downstairs is for the yarn. The onset of the cold weather has my knitting needles clicking away. I actually finished something:

This is the Simple Yet Effective Shawl. (Haven't blocked it yet. But I don't expect it to grow much since there is so much garter stitch in it.)

It surprised me in how much I enjoyed knitting a triangle. It was super simple but changed just enough to make it fun. (Although I did sit and mumble one day "Evil thy name is yarn over" to which my mother just glanced at me sideways and kept moving. This pattern has four increases (yarn overs) every other row and let me tell you, by the time you are to the end of it, you'll be happy that you chose needles with a 60" cable.) I liked this pattern so much that I'd like to knit it again. But next time I'll make it bigger. This will be a good neck scarf but even for that, it will be a bit stumpy.

I've been trolling around on Ravelry a lot lately searching for other patterns like the shawl. I have quite a bit of sock yarn but for whatever reason, I knit socks at the speed of mud. I do, however, knit lace fairly quickly. Which seems odd but there you have it. And luckily a lot of lace patterns use sock weight yarn.

One of my favorite things about Ravelry is that you get to see the variations that people put on existing patterns. It really sparks the imagination. Which is exactly what happened when I came across Through the Loops' version of Wisp. I immediately hobbled upstairs (we are having some back issues again) and dug around in my stash.

I pulled two coordinating skeins of Blue Moon Fiber's Socks that Rock. One skein is a little short on the yardage side for this project so I'm going to do the two repeats on each end in one color and the body of it in the another. (I'd tell you the colorways but someone lost the bands to these skeins. Whoever did that was a dumbo.)

Here's the beginning:

And the lace detail:

This bugger is going to stretch out to Denver when I block it. Can't wait.

I queued up enough other projects on Ravelry (I'm redheadknitter75 if you'd like to be buddies) to keep me busy for a couple years.

Dooely has found my moving about today bothersome, its disturbing his twenty hours of naptime. I even pointed the camera at him and he didn't budge:

Can't blame little man, he's not feeling so well. He's getting over a double ear infection and a second run at a scratched eyeball. He tends to cling like plastic wrap when he's feeling lousy, can't say that I blame him.

So that's my thrilling life. I think part of my problem is that I'm fighting a cold too, makes me want to follow Dooley's cue and just curl up on the sofa. Hopefully that all passes soon. In the meantime, I'm going to go knit...

11 October 2009

Where I Stand Sunday

The violent stutter of color is like a drug, pulling my attention to places I would not otherwise look. I stand in the cold rain and smell the decomposing leaves around me and try to memorize this moment, this second where the world seems the most alive as it shudders under the weight of heavy grey storm clouds.

Where I Stand Sunday is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing. Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on. The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell. (You can view Year One of the project here and the gallery for this year here.)

08 October 2009

autumn afternoon

Dooley and I had a date at his vet this morning and while we were heading over there, we noticed a small autumn market set up on the grounds of the historic Wilcox house. I stopped off and could have stood there all day long. I love Michigan in autumn, I swear there is nothing better on earth...

Art Now for Autism - Reverse Auction in progress!

Reverse Auction October 1-10, 2009

We all know someone who has been touched autism. Claudine Intner is among them. When her son was diagnosed with autism, she decided to take action. From the Art Now for Autism website, she writes:

"How ART NOW FOR AUTISM started…

My name is Claudine Intner, and I am the organizer of Art Now for Autism. Four years ago our son was diagnosed with autism. We had struggled for a few years prior trying to figure out what was going on with him. It was devastating. As we worked to find him the best education and services, we decided we wanted to do more to defeat autism and prevent other children and families from having to go through this."

You can read all about her efforts here.

One of the biggest fundraisers she conducts each year is an auction of artwork. This year she is running a Reverse Auction, currently in full swing. The artwork varies amongst all mediums and is not to be missed! Visit the auction pages here to find a piece that will not only grace your home but help raise money for autism research!

06 October 2009

a weekend full of fiber

This past weekend, Mary, Kate and I hung out in Turkeyville, MI with our art quilts and sheep, goats and angora bunnies. Running with Scissors was invited to exhibit our work in the barn during the Fiber Arts & Animals Festival and it was a most awesome experience.

I took tons of pictures so here goes:

Cornwell is alllllllll about the turkey. Turkey chili, turkey dinners, turkey sandwiches, turkey salads, turkeys in the barn out back (which is how I suspect they furnish the previously mentioned items):

I did get an education about the temperament of turkeys. Turns out they don't like the color red. Which would explain why, after taking this picture, the lovely gentleman in the foreground of the shot turned to face me fully and glare at me. My purse has a large red fabric panel on it. I took his look as a very clear bugger off and left them alone. Nice turkeys, nice.

The fiber festival was across the street from the restaurant. This place was the definition of charm:

Need a pumpkin?

Wander across the street and you see the barn where our display was:

Its a lovely restored barn that was a great exhibit space:

We had many visitors and lots of questions about art quilts. Rick invited us back for next year and we are very much looking forward to it!

The barn used to house hay. They have ladders that go pretty much all the way up to the top of the roof. They made me dizzy to look at, let me show you:

The weather was rainy off and on and we had cool temps but it didn't keep us from wandering around outside amongst all the fibery goodness. Here was the view behind where all the vendors were set up:

I had a good time making friends with all the four legged creatures:

The angora bunnies were fantastic. They were like clouds with legs and didn't mind being petted obsessively by a city girl that doesn't get to see them very often. I particularly liked this handsome guy.

And the goats. Oh my the goats! I soooooo wanted to bring a couple of these babies home! (I think Dooley would not share my enthusiasm.)

This little girl was only three months old and it was the first time away from her mama. She voiced her displeasure loudly if she was left alone, which wasn't often at all. Very sweet, loved to be petted. She comes from One Heart Farm (their website is coming soon), an organic fiber farm. She made me want to load a dozen just like her into the back of the car and become a goat lady.

I pretty much felt the same about the sheep, especially after seeing this sign:

Really want to go green? Loose the lawnmower, buy some sheep. The three lovely ladies in this pen were for sale and were getting used to quirky nature of humans, I visited them several times and made friends with this one:

Pretty girl, huh?

Most of the sheep were getting naked:

It was a sight to behold. The lady doing the shearing was super quick. Covered in wool one minute, looking like they lost fifty pounds the next:

I bought some brown roving to spin that suspiciously matches this lovely lady. Not sure if it came from her but the color is spot on.

Meet Matillda, she likes humans:

There were raw fleeces for sale, straight off the sheeps:

I'm not quite there yet. I'm still attempting to master (or at least not suck at) the spinning. The day I decide I want to buy a raw fleece to process is the day I might as well just move out to Marshall and buy some sheep.

But lest you think that the only thing to do was admire the four legged friends that make our fibery adventures possible, you'd be mistaken. There were many vendors there with the most fantastic things to pet and buy. I didn't take any shots of the booths (which I regret) but did bring home some things to remember them all by:

One the left is hand spun yarn from Pumpkinhaus. I admired it greatly and Mary gave it to me as a birthday gift (thanks Mary). Pumpkinhaus has it labeled as "Flight of the Bumblebee" but I think it looks like a taxi cab.

The yarn in the middle and the right came from Jehovah Jireh Farm. I plan to make a cowl out of this one. The one in the middle is 50% wool/alpaca and begs to be worn.

I also found some goodies in the booth from Bricolage Studios:

That's a little bag made from her handspun to hang on your spinning wheel (I've made the commitment to myself to spin more, I really want to make it more of a regular exercise) and a necklace with one of her most awesome fiber beads hanging from it. (You can see more of them in her store here.)

To say that we had a really good time is an understatement. We are already looking forward to next year and I'm looking forward to using all the goodies I picked up!

04 October 2009

Where I Stand Sunday

The crispness of the air snaps against my face, brisk and insistent in its demands for attention. A sigh that has been building inside me all year is about to find release as the year approaches the resting season. My mind grows sluggish, thick with shadows and afterthought. It is a quiet transition that demands a subtle respect, a motion lurking in the background that creeps slowly along the edges of every minute.

Where I Stand Sunday is an ongoing photo essay examining the different places I spend my life standing. Too often we take for granted the everyday places we spend our lives walking on. The ground we tread on has its own stories to tell. (You can view Year One of the project here and the gallery for this year here.)

01 October 2009

i need a medic! stat!

I was tooling around today, tidying up a bit (I know, record the date). Things around the house have gotten a little out of hand with all that has been going on, especially all the exhibits. The last for the year hangs this weekend at the Fiber Arts & Animals Festival in Marshall, MI which is sure to be a good time.

I was feeling all zen and pleased and generally content...until I saw it.

Can't see it? Here's a closer shot:

Part of Babette's guts have been ripped open.

There was a mild amount of shock followed by some not so mild cussing. I'm not really sure how this happened. In all honesty, up until this past week, its not been cool enough for blankets so she hasn't seen a lot of action yet. And Dooley doesn't get to lay on her (he tends to like to fluff his blankets in a totally OCD manner, a habit which lends itself to injuries like those seen above) so I know he didn't do it.

My poor Babette. If she could whimper I know she would. Who wouldn't with their guts all hanging out like that? Especially if some sadistic witch came along and stuck her finger in the injury to boot...

I'm not entirely sure what my options are for fixing her. My first reaction was to slog upstairs to my studio and just grab a new square (we are all stocked up on those after all) but figured that would present issues since the line of yarn used to sew it together is likely long and would effect more of the squares around it.

I also considered staples and crazy glue but neither of those sound comfortable to sleep under so I skipped them.

I'll have to figure out how to recreate the center round. It will be a few weeks before I can sit down and do it. In the mean time, I folded her wound to the inside and placed her in the other room.

*sigh* My poor girl...