Thursday, May 30, 2013

Add In Increments

Normally, when Howard is away I invite a friend to come for a sewing visit, go away, or plan a lot of projects to maximize the time - like cleaning last week. I miss him only he has travelled extensively for work in the past so being apart is something we're used to and we have our routines and we're adjusted but then again, possibly we've become unadjusted now that his travels are irregular. I found this past weekend really lonely. But maybe it wasn't just me. When I was out for a walk, my neighbor - who is single - asked me how I was doing, was I lonely and when I said really on the weekend and wondered how she managed ongoing, she said it was just a weird weekend - barometric pressure or something. Nice to know.

Yesterday was the opposite extreme. I had three sets of company and that was enough interaction that I cancelled my weekly sewing date to spend a few hours alone in the studio. How we individually approach life fascinates me. The conversations ranged from an upbeat, positive, exploring, lets see what happens approach to more of a victim, that'll never happen for me, I'm not that lucky approach. I know which I'd rather be.

One of my guests is an artist. We talked about bad, good, and great work as described in Do More Great Work and about the directions we are each going in. We don't always have the option of - or the opportunity to - interact with other artists or sewists but when we do, it brings an extra energy to creativity that I'm starting to want more of... which I find interesting... since I've been mostly working alone for years. Thank goodness the Internet can fill in a few of those blanks.

I've been having a wonderful email conversation with another friend about our style, proportion, and how to make simple lines more edgy. One of the greatest gifts you can have in life - in my opinion anyway - is someone who will tell you the truth and help you to find a better answer. She's not saying my work is all wrong. It isn't. We've just been discussing what I learned about my fashion personality and the directions I want to take my garments in along with the balance between soft lines and drama and how to bring more of the elements from my textile art into my clothing. YES YES ! ! !

I've cut and rolled three more balls of yarn and have one meter left to do before putting the balls and the extra yardage aside until I find the right pattern. I haven't decided if I'll knit to fit a sewing pattern or try to gauge the yarn and follow a knitting one. I think the decision will be made when I find the shape I want.

More yarn seemed boring. I wanted something else to show you today so I decided to dye the lime green scarf and - because I was pretty sure it was cotton - test to see how the ribbing that I'm using for the yarn would take dye.

I started by adding blue... and then a bit more blue... and then a touch of black working in increments. The scarf turned a gorgeous turquoise emerald kind of shade and the knit scrap went a denim color. After ten minutes, I added another yard of the knit. It's been over a year, possibly two, since the last time I dyed fabric. I thought I remembered the instructions but apparently I didn't. After I washed out the dye, the fabric was exactly the original color. Too funny. I made more dye, let it sit overnight, added the soda ash solution this morning, and will rinse it out later. It looks pretty. Hopefully it sticks or I may need to go back to dyeing school.

My focus today is knitting the sweater for my friend's grandbaby. I'm starting to run out of time. There's not much left to do - one front, sew the shoulders together, join the sleeves, knit on the collar, block, sew the side seams, add buttons. I'll alternate knitting and making yarn and we'll see how it goes. It's small. That sentence might be longer than the work - LOL.

Talk soon - Myrna

Grateful - instructions


  1. Lucky you and lucky friend to be able to explore design and sewing ideas and directions together. It can be difficult to get just the right balance of togetherness and alone time, but it sounds like overall you have a great mix.

    1. The in-town friend is moving to another province in a few weeks. Wednesday was our last visit before she leaves. The email friend lives in a large city in the United States quite for from me. I hope one day that we can meet face-to-face but who knows if and when. Until then, I'm thankful for email.

      I'm looking for opportunities to interact with local artists. We've had a lot of growth in the art community over the past few years that I've mostly ignored. I'm ready to see what's going on now and if/how I'll fit into it.


Thanks for commenting. I appreciate the feedback and the creative conversation.