I think September was stolen this year by a time thief… I remember groggily waking up at 5:30am on September 1st and hearing for the first time this year a Blue Jay’s fall call. I thought to myself, “Wow! September first and they change to the fall call just like that, I better write a blog post about this…” And here we are…
Tomorrow in spite of the predicted rainy weather, I will be a vendor at my first big fair. The New England Blacksmith, Arts and Music Festival will be held September 29th from 10am – 9pm at Riverside Park in Fitchburg Ma. The director of Membership from the Fitchburg Art Musem had seen my work at a fair last November and contacted me this summer about being a vendor at this fair. I have been knitting like a mad woman because, I have no idea what to expect at a big fair. Up to this point have I sold at local church fairs, community fairs, and farmers markets. I’m trying to get an Etsy site up an running but my progress has been slow, to say the least. I have what seems, to me, an enormous number of little creatures and piles of accessories ready to go.
I’m both nervous and very excited. Not only for myself and my work. But, I can’t wait to see the blacksmithing. I have been interested in iron work since elementary school. One of my 5th grade teachers was also a smith and made the stair railings in the house I currently live in. The forging of iron seems magical and, of course, there is all that lovely fire. I’m bringing my camera and I hope to get some pictures.But for now, it’s time to get back to finishing duck bodies. I hope the weather clears some.
Posted in general, knitting Tagged birds, etsy, fairs, knitting, making art with 0 commentsPosted on August 14, 2012
Helen is sick with one of those nasty summer flu, fever, stuffed up head, sore throat, headache miserable things. Even a trip to the doctors, Tylenol, and an antibiotic aren’t helping very much. Popsicles, cold water and the fact that the humidity seems to have calmed down a little bit, will help today, I hope. I’m always a little wary of antibiotics as they seem to bring their own set of problems at the same time that their working to cure the illness. But I’m hoping to get Helen well enough by the weekend to enjoy her 12th birthday party, so we’re giving the antibiotics a try.
On a more cheerful note, nectarines, red and white, are here and delicious. And peaches…I was talking to a friend at farmers market who grows peaches and he told me that this weather which has been such a challenge for people, cats, and vegetable crops, is just perfect fro peaches. He must be right as we have been eating wonderful peaches for the past three weeks and they’re still coming in. Peach cobbler may be next on the menu.
And then there are stitch guides. I have always liked the Harmony guide series. Most recently I have been working with Lace & Eyelets: 250 stitches to knit edited by Erika Knight, published by Interweave Press. I like the size and feel of the book, the way it opens flat so you can read the stitch instructions while you’re knitting and the sturdy spine construction and corner construction for heavy use. I also like the way the stitch swatches are photographed in different colors helping me to think about how a particular stitch may look in a dark or light color. Finally I like the way the stitch swatches are photographed against a white background so you can see how shadow, which always plays a part in designing with lace, may appear on a particular stitch. I’m not a big collector of stitch compendiums. Beyond Barbra Walker’s Treasuries and an old, dog eared, paperback, 1970′s stitch guide from Mon Tricot, I borrow new stitch guides form the library, enjoy them and return them. But I have borrowed Lace & Eyelets five times in the last three months and I think I will now put it on my wish list of books to add to my home library. If you like to knit lace, check this book out.
Posted in book review, farmers market, general, knitting with 1 commentPosted on August 10, 2012
Beautiful evening last night at the Ashby Band Concert. Good music, nice people, delicious homemade donuts. While I was listening and knitting, I saw the only Swift I’ve seen this year silhouetted against an August twilight.
I love to knit while listening to music and at an outdoor concert I can knit as much as I like without disturbing other listeners. Generally, during a band concert, I can knit three Flower Fairy bodies. Last night I was little slow and number three is still minus a head.
Which brings me to a a current philosophical struggle I’m having as a blogger. Do I want to post in progress pictures of the fairies and animals I make. I haven’t posted any so far. On the one hand, as a person who makes things, I love seeing step by step pictures of a fellow makers process. On the other hand when I have taken pictures of the animals and fairies in progress, I find the pictures somewhat disturbing. Perhaps this is the lasting influence of a Doll teacher from my past who said that if you are making a doll or repairing one, you should be careful to do it when a child isn’t present because it is a violent thing for them to see a needle poking through an animal or figure that to them seems real. For everything I currently make, in the animal or figure line, there is a point at which the pieces stop being pieces and start to take on what to me feels like a personality. Perhaps I could photograph up to that point and then jump to a more finished step? I’ve been mulling this over for sometime now but haven’t reached a conclusion. With knitted hats, gloves, scarves, dish cloths, anything that isn’t an animal or a figure, I have no problem with in process photos. But animals and figures… I don’t know. What do you think?
And so I have no picture today, and I shall continue to ponder…Posted on August 7, 2012
After almost a full week of really hot, humid, without a drop of rain weather; two nights of crazy thunder storms brought a lovely cooler day yesterday. Helen and Andre were actually able to use the playground instead of staring at it apathetically. The cats were grateful and wandered around the house on their usual routes instead of lying stretched full length on the studio floor panting. I felt like cooking and had a big bowl of potato salad made and in the refrigerator by 8:30 am.
Salad… I love the food at this time of year. I bought local peaches, apricots, nectarines, tomatoes and summer squash yesterday. I like most food seasonally, but the prodigality of food, especially plant food, that is starting and will continue through September, if we have a slow fall through October, makes me grateful to live in North Worcester County. Going to a Farmers Market, local small town market, or roadside stand is an epic treat for the senses. Even our little garden, which got started late, is getting ready to churn out peppers, tomatoes, beans, cukes for the belly; sunflowers, marigolds and zinnias for the heart.
I’ve been setting up a table at the Ashburnham Farmers Market this summer and doing pretty well. This year, the Farmers Market is right outside of the North Country Sustainability Center where I have a year round vendor space. This picture was taken yesterday by my friend Diana Dyke. She is a free lance photographer whose beautiful work is often seen in our local newspapers. Helen and I are a little red because we are under a red canopy tent. I am, of course, knitting, geese feet in this photo; and Helen is looking over a book she just checked out from the library. My table was full when we started and this picture was taken about an hour and a half later. I will be a knitting fool for the rest of this week to get ready for next Monday’s market.
Posted in farmers market, general with 1 commentPosted on August 1, 2012
Today is August 1st and the deep summer Flower Fairies and Blue Berry Fairies are here. Black Eyed Susans, Zinnias, Marigolds, Daylilies, Phlox, Nasturtiums, Inpatients, which my grand mother always called Patient Lucys, Queen Anne’s Lace, Chicory and so many more. The little Fairies can hardly keep up. Time for a relaxing walk among the grass and clover.
This time of year when the nights are so full of the sounds of crickets and katydids, when full moons look extra full, when heavy morning dews leave sparkling water drops and there are fairy table cloths of dew on undisturbed grassy places, the flow of life seems so strong, so dancy and so magical I spend as much time outside as possible. With yarn of course.
In Ashby, the town next to us, my brother plays the bass in the Ashby town band at evening band concerts on Wednesday evenings. Hot dogs, homemade donuts with ice cream happy people listening to the music as the sun leaves the sky. In early July it’s still light as you drive home. By late August you need to remember to bring a sweater and it will be dark before you leave. We’ll be there tonight with Flower Fairies, Blue Berry Fairies and a few knitted geese that still need their feet.