15 in ’15 First Quarter Check-in
After a very wet and overcast winter, spring is here!
Time to check in on my list of goals for the year. (My original post about 2015 goals is here.)
I am really enjoying this checklist structure. I feel like I am cruising along, getting a little bit done in a lot of areas, and pretty much staying with the program.
So far, three of the areas are getting most of the emphasis.
I had picked 14 fabrics I wanted to finish up and get out of here, and I just finished up the third one. I think I bought this fabric back in the 80s, planning to make clothes for an old-fashioned cloth doll for one of my daughters. That never happened.
Older fabrics feel so much better than a lot of what is available today, but I just didn’t have any other fabrics to blend in with it. There are not a lot of dusty rose and Wedgewood blue fabrics out there. I found a long thin piece of a floral, with “1986” and “Teflon® finish” printed on the selvedge, and decided to do a little strippy lap quilt. I just quilted the large floral strips, and not too precisely either. But the important thing is that this fabric has finally made it into a useful project.
Another goal I had was to watch some of the many craft videos and online classes I have. I chose an easy-to-achieve number here, and said I would watch 11 segments. I could mark this goal complete for this year, because I have watched 19! I have gotten a lot of ideas and tips from them too. One that sticks with me is regarding ink paint sticks. I had tried them once, just coloring directly on fabric, and didn’t really like the result. In a Quilting Arts video, I saw that you should scribble with the paint stick on a piece of palette or freezer paper, and then pick up the pigment with a brush, and apply it that way. Ah, instructions. If I wasn’t surrounded by such a plethora of them, maybe I would pay more attention to them.
Another goal was to share textile knowledge six times. I have given three weaving lessons, and then last night I brought a loom to a 4-H group. There were about 30 kids, ranging in age from 5 to 15. The previous month, a spinner had come and showed her work, so although I had brought some different fibers and a drop spindle with me, I proceeded to the weaving process. For 5 – 10 minutes, I showed a variety of textiles, old and new, and told something special about each one, and then I let the kids weave if they wanted to.
I always enjoy the reaction of those kids that do give it a try. They pick it up so quickly, and then they start asking all kinds of questions — “How do you change colors?” “What do you do when you run out of space?” “Are you sure you don’t have to tie a knot in the ends?”
Last night there were two in particular who were so interested. One was a boy about seven years old. As he waited his turn, he was flipping through all the samples I had brought, and kept returning to this 8 harness weave:
He was really studying it, and trying to figure out how to do that. I had only brought a 4 harness loom, and I was having all the other kids do plain weave, but I thought he was ready for more, so I started him on twill. He was very intent and soon figured out that he could reverse the treadling.
The other interested one was also a boy, about 14. He took a short turn, and then left to go on to the other activities in the room. But he kept coming back, and saying things like, “So you could have a really big loom, and then you could make wider pieces, right? But then you would have so many treadles, you wouldn’t have enough feet to work them.” So I explained about tying up more than one harness to a treadle. Understanding would dawn, and he would go off for a while, and then come back with, “So you could use some really thick warps, and some thin ones, and space them out differently, right?” It is so amazing, to talk with someone who gets it so quickly, much more quickly than I ever did!
SO! I’m having lots of fun completing some projects and goals, and lots more ideas are springing up too.