What to write about?

Well I truly didn’t plan on taking a month off of talking here but what do you talk about when life is just doing it’s thing? Passing day by day? May is a pretty crazy month anyway with projects and the end of school celebrations. I can happily say that I now have a middle schooler and a sophomore and both of them had straight A’s this last semester. Now I have to figure out how to keep them occupied over the summer. I don’t think that this will be too difficult as there’s the pool and with each of their involvement in band summer really only lasts about six weeks for us.

On to craft! I currently have a major case of starteritis. For those of you that don’t know what this is it’s where a creative person wants to start several different projects at the same time. With so many different craft options at my disposal I get inspired for each of them! My main focus during May has been knitting a cape for a young lady to wear to her uncle’s wedding this summer. All that is left is the edging so now I’m starting to get the new project itch. I can’t start the two deadline projects that I have coming up as I’m waiting on yarn. So yesterday I gave in a little bit. I measured the next warp in my Van Gogh series…

This is the third scarf I’ve woven with inspiration from Van Gogh.  Considering Georgia O’keeffe next or painting some of my own with inspiration from Monet.

Then I warped my little inkle loom…inkle

I just learned how to inkle this spring from my friend Pockethouse Textiles.  This is going to be a lanyard for my sophomore for her marching band chart book, that is if she likes it.  The loom is handmade by Windhaven Fiber & Tools.  This size is called Minstrel and can make a band 3 1/2 feet long.  They also offer left or right handed options which is great as I’m a leftie.

And last but not least I started a spinning project…fiber

Last year at Interweave Yarn Fest I picked up this amazing bundle of 50% yak 50% silk from Greenwood Fiberworks.  Galina Khmeleva of Skaska Designs and Orenburg lace knitting fame is who I learned support spinning from and I love it.

So what are you up to this holiday weekend?  Creating?  Relaxing?  Family?

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What a pretty cover!

Good morning!  Early last week I already had ramblings of what I wanted to talk about this week floating in my head, however that all fluttered away when I saw the cover of PieceWork May/June issue Wednesday morning………piecework cover

Oh Wow!!  Those are mine!  I was overwhelmed and shocked as this was my first submission for the prized lace issue.  Considering how the rest of life was when I was creating these I was deeply moved.  Size 0’s and a fine cotton silk blend are not the easiest of materials to work with when you are out of your usual elements.  Jeane, the lovely editor let me push the deadline on these to the absolute limit and I spent one whole weekend marathon knitting to finish.  I’m glad their offices are just down the street and I could hand deliver them.  This is my second cover for the PieceWork the first being the Sept/Oct 2015 edition.piecework sept oct 2015

Point being with all of this….Go for it!  If you have an idea and you think it will work send it in.  The only way things like this happen is if you put yourself out there.  Could it get sent back?  Maybe, I’ve had submissions not get accepted and at first it’s a bummer but there are many factors that go into the selection process and what won’t work for one just might for another.  I do know that seeing my ideas travel the globe make the risk worth it.  Here’s the link for PieceWork’s Editorial Calendar…..It is a history magazine along with the projects and they cover all kinds of crafts from knitting to crochet and beyond.  My brain is already trying to come up with some tatting for them even though I only started a couple of years ago.  Find a good story or family history and go from there, you never know what might happen!

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Another one off the Loom

See?  I am trying to get better at this writing and sharing thing!  I still don’t understand hashtags but you can also find me on instagram as threaded_dream.

Looks like peaceful Sunday mornings are when I have time to type so let’s get started

Lately I’ve been trying to build an inventory to have for sales, be it with starting an online shop or to join local craft events here in the Fort.  My loom is very handy with this because with weaving once you get past dressing it weaving is the easy and fun part.

Here are the latest two scarves to come off of Rapunzel, yes my loom has a name and considering with tencel my favorite weaving medium, I use a comb to detangle the strands it’s very appropriate.  With the purple piece you can see a white piece of card stock woven in.  No, it does not stay in the piece.  When I submitted and the Doctor Who scarf for HandWoven I had to keep meticulous notes on the process and had enough warp to weave a small sample to keep for myself.  This has influenced me to start a weaving journal where I keep notes on the project and purposely measure out a bit extra on my warp so that I can keep a sample of the finished piece.

Here’s the next warp ready and waiting to start.  I pulled the colors from Van Gogh’s Starry Night and it has given me the inspiration to find two more of his paintings to do the same with for the start of an artists’ series of scarves.

Where do you find inspiration to create?

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Self-care

Yesterday dinking around in the morning on Facebook I found and read Sweetgeorgia Yarns blog about how her March plans were totally destroyed by illness.  More poking around showed that April is National Stress Awareness month and self-care month.  So it got me to thinking, what do I do that takes care of me?

Almost fifteen years ago the idea of self-care was a very difficult one for me to learn.  As a new mother I was constantly on call to take care of everything so the idea of taking time for me felt selfish, guilty and went against the grain of what I thought I should be doing.  Yet over time I have found that the better I take care of me, the more I have within myself to take care of others.

So what does this mean?  How much time is involved?  What should I do for myself?  My own self-care may seem extreme to some of you especially after I looked at my hours chart that I created for Ranger Jen, 28 of the 168 in a week I give to myself, 17%.  And no, sleep doesn’t count!  It’s actually more than I thought but I’m all sure that you appreciate me taking showers which is part of that time.  What do I do?  Lots of things, the main one being exercise.  I spend 5 hours a week at the gym sweating.  With everything else in my life, I’m constantly in control and running the show.  During that time at the gym I give that control over to someone else.  He pushes me to do insane things physically that I alone would not think possible.  I also read, meditate and work on projects for me.  Lately this has been the stitch a day project that Jenny at The Loopy Ewe  got me started on.  A wonderful yoga instructor in town, Michael Lloyd-Billington has what I like to call the 20 minute rule.  Twenty minutes practiced with mindfullness and consistency regardless of what it is can work wonders.  His practice is made up of 20 minutes each of meditation, yoga and journaling.

Does this mean that these things are right for you?  Only you can answer that question.  So I want to know here or on Facebook, what do you do to take care of you every day?

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Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes….

Hello again!  I know that I said last time I was here back in October that I would get better at this, that I would blog more.  Well it’s now March and you can see how much I’ve been here.  There are times that real life takes precedence over life online.  In November my husband was ill with what we thought was the flu.  It ended up being an infection from an unknown source that caused him to become septic.  Nurses and doctors did everything that they could but it was just too much and after eight days in ICU it was time to let him go.  He was 47.  Do I tell you this to gain your sympathy?  To make you worry for me and my girls?

No.  I tell you this because regardless of gender, color, identification, religion and any other way that you can separate human beings there are two things that we all share: our beginning and our ending.  We are each born and we each die.  What we do with the time in between those two moments is where the value lies.  So I’m going to ask you a question: Are you happy?  If so great!  If not, change it.  I’ve never feared death, but my perspective as changed.  Life can change in an instant, so why waste it?  In ways, in things, in people who don’t respect you, support you or challenge you.  I had a discussion with a friend a couple of weeks ago.  She works a full-time stressful job and was talking about how she had no time to do any of the that she wanted to do.  My reply?  There are 168 hours in a week, you work 40, call it another 50 for sleep, that leaves 78 hours a week to be doing things for you.  I think it rather surprised her.

If you are putting things off because you “don’t have time”  who is to say that the time will actually be there when you want it to be?  I used to think like this with this craft adventure, it will happen.  Now I’m going to make it happen.  My goals in life right now are to raise my girls to be strong, independent women and to make Threaded Dream a reality.  To make and live a creative life.  Am I doing this for anyone else?  No, I’m doing it for me.

Life is a journey and I think sometimes we all get too focused on the destination and take the journey for granted.  The journey is what makes the destination all the sweeter.  I have a project, a massive undertaking really, that I call The Tapestry.  I started it in August of 2015 and it will take years to complete.  It brings me back to myself one stitch at a time, showing me the beauty of the process, life should be the same way.  Don’t ignore the wonder of today to finish the goal of tomorrow.

So, that is where I am now four months after my life and that of my daughters took  an unexpected route.  Things are different but we’re good.  Threaded Dream is going to get there, one project, one pattern, one step at a time.  I hope to see the beauty of it the whole way.  🙂

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I’m back!

Here’s my second attempt at entering the internet again and talking about all things creative.  To jump back in I want to tell you about a company called Yarn Crush.  I was looking around online for more ways to get my designs out to the public and found them.  They have a subscription package that you sign up for and get yarn and patterns shipped to you every month.  Think wine club but this is even better because it is yarn!  I contacted them as a designer and was lucky enough to create the knit pattern for their July 2016 box, the Heartfire Shawl.  As I’ve never been involved in a yarn subscription before they sent me one of their previous months to take a look at.

So much goodness inside!  There’s both a crochet and a knit pattern so there no reason to limit yourself there and if you are bistitchual as I am you get to choose.  Some cute crafting buttons and a super notebook.  I don’t know about anyone else but I love notebooks and always have several on hand at any given time.  Along with the skein of yarn you receive any of the notions needed to complete the project.  For June 2016 the project is a market bag in  crochet written by Julie-Sarah Desjardins of accrochet.com or the knit pattern is by Gabrielle Vezina.  The yarn is a 60% alpaca, 40% cotton blend from Americo original.  There’s 153 yards in the 100 gram skein.  Now my fellow local crafters will tell you that this size yarn freaks me out.  They call the yarn I work with “thread” and I they love the fact that I don’t own knitting needles above a size 6!  That being said it is wonderfully soft and I love the golden color.  I can see myself tackling the crochet pattern from this set.

Yarn Crush puts out a great product with lots of fun goodies included and wonderful yarn.  Getting a mystery package in the mail every month can be fun!  It’s also a great format for pushing you outside of your comfort zone as a crafter.  It could be to tackle crochet or knitting if you are monogamous to one or the other, a great way to try different yarns and even a way to come up with unique Christmas ideas.  Also this summer they started a sock club box for more options to check out.

Happy Creating!

Katrina

 

 

 

 

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Back from summer!!!

Back from summer and time to really start putting some effort into this blogging and Threaded Dream venture.  I’m going to post something happening every week to keep me on track with projects and such 🙂

As for what I have been doing, this summer I participated in Camp Loopy a summer knitting contest put on by The Loopy Ewe.  There was different project every month to be completed each with its own theme.  For the second project, I got the inspiration to design a piece for Melisandre another character from A Song of Ice and Fire world.  The pattern is now available on Ravelry 🙂

Laceweight Cersei is 20 rows from being finished, granted a row takes about an hour but I do feel that I’m on the downhill slide.  Several other characters have been talking to me and it’s simply a matter of taking the time to get the patterns all down and knitted, it feels slow but I know that it will get there. 

 

Katrina

 

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