Thursday, October 25, 2007

Tap, Tap, Tap

Some people who read this blog get impatient when there are no new posts. I feel their impatience, like a tap, tap, tap, reminding me to get busy and do something, so I will have something to say or photograph. I got nothing yet, Patricia, just some words.

I'm back from SOAR. There have been many wonderful posts with photos, reports, and links to others, from Abby, Phreadde, Stephanie, and lots of others (follow the links on their blogs), but me? I got nothing. No photos of people, no reports of classes or retreat insights, no stories of wild debauchery aided by swill (well, I tried swill, not once but twice, thanks to Dan. It is potent stuff!).

I had one of the most pleasant, fun and memorable SOARs in quite a while. There were sounds of happy people, smiles and funny stories, all in a calm, relaxed space of clean and bright days. Sometimes it just feels like being in a bubble, a moment out of time, when the only important thing is to flow through the days. The weather was perfect, even the rain and wind, well, because I did not have to go out in it, unless I chose. The people were happy, there were lots of new faces, and many of them much younger than I remember from the past few years. Those young faces give me more optimism than I have had in years: spinners are a growing population, and younger spinners are starting to show up, and out-number us grey beards. This is a good thing.

This is the view from our balcony:

trees in Michigan Oct 2007

My friend Sue and I had a two room suite: small kitchen area, dining table, living room with fire place, and balcony overlooking the woods. Also a large bedroom and the a palatial bathroom. We felt rich and lucky, and enjoyed our mornings with tea and knitting by the fire.

Sue and I had a few days prior to SOAR traveling up the west coast of Michigan, from Saugatuck to Glen Arbor, to Harbor Springs and down to Bellaire, and Shanty Creek. The weather was warm, the scenery was beautiful, we had great accommodations and wonderful food. Sometimes there are trips like that: everything just flowed, and the memories are of a piece.

My camera held only photos of trees and sand dunes. I found lots of inspiration in Michigan, from the colors of Fall just turning, to the windswept sand dunes and rolling hills of the Lelenau Peninsula where we spent several days.

I went on to Wisconsin, where Fall was less evident, but the weather and company no less enjoyable. Deb and her husband took me on an evening boat-ride across Lake Mendota, with gin and tonic cocktails on board, to dinner on the far shore, and a star-filled moon-lit boat ride home.

I came home to a California Fall:

trees in front small

golden trees and blue skies. I live on a small, unnamed ridge, the land slopes away down the hill. Apparently I missed two weeks of rain and cold, so I feel doubly blessed: good weather in Michigan and Wisconsin, and good weather and golden trees to come home to in California:

trees small october 24 2007

Now to unpack. Boxes have arrived, suitcases are full of clothes to be washed, looms and wheels are waiting and Patricia is impatiently tapping, waiting for new things to appear on the blog. I can feel it, hear it. I am nothing if not obedient (cue wild cackling laughter here).

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Still on the Road

dye day

But we've been busy!

If you are on the waiting list for Dye Book 1, take heart, we're working, there's hope. Contact Deb for ETA:

Back soon, or maybe not?

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Long and Winding Road

pickup silk band7 blog Sept 2007

This band took several months to weave, a long and winding road, and it was not as smooth a process as I like (read: there was much swearing and gnashing of teeth).

It is a seemingly simple undulating pattern, a short repeat, and color cues to help with remembering where in the pattern I am.

But I just could not learn the pattern, and I had to follow it step by step, pick by pick, for 78 agonizing inches. I kept getting frustrated and abandoning the work, until time and a deadline demanded finishing.

I have my suspicions as to why this occurred, and I will try another version (read: glutton for punishment) to see if I can improve upon the process without sacrificing the look of the weave structure. Details: Treenway's 8/2 tight twist reeled silk, dyed with Lanaset dyes, woven on an inkle loom, in a pickup technique.

It's done now though, packed and ready to go, traveling on another long and winding road for the next few weeks. I am a bad road-blogger, and thus it may seem like I have run away.

I have :). Back soon.