Archive for the ‘Gratitude Project’ Category

Gratitude Project progress

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

russiandolls005I have been working on some of my gratitude projects. I have 10 this year, five from an offer I made via fb, anf 5 via an offer I accepted from my neice (also via fb and a slightly different offer. Technically I only had 4 responses to the first offer, so I went and chose a fifth to be grateful for. I will do much the same for the second offer, given that ir received no response, but I can certainly find gratitude for five more peeps.

I can’t say that this is the beginning of one of those projects because I just don’t know yet. My dear wife was recently in Chicago without me and since he had been to Knot Just Knits on our previous visit to Oak Park, she knew exactly where to go to soothe her loneliness. She bought me the kit for Leftie which included a base yarn and an assortment pack of leaf colors and the pattern. I got the pattern delivered via email as soon as she bought it. I can imagine the conversation:

E: Hi! I want to get my wife a present because she couldn’t come with me on this trip and I mimss her terribly and she is a knitter and will love this!
Clerk: What does she like to knit?

E: yarn!
Clerk: okaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay…what colors does she like?

E: yes! she likes colors…

The conversation I imagine just goes on and on, and really, E should just give the clerk a dollar amount and tell her to pick a project out.

russiandolls004I also got this lovely Russian doll box style project bag. It all fits nice and neat insode and I have been a good girl about putting it away when i am done for the night because we have more than one dog (umm, three) with a history of hosting yarn parties. It’s great stuff and I am sure they just can’t help themselves.

So I will be knitting away on the Leftie shawl (so named for its fun use of leftovers, not for left-handedness, which I posess) and see where it ends up, whether as a keeper or a gifter.


52 Lists: Week 1

Wednesday, January 15th, 2014

52 Lists001I am not yet sure if I am finished with week 1 of the 52 Lists Project, but I am calling it finished to get on with it. The topic for week one is words that touch your soul. I started a list on scrap paper and it felt so very cliche, so I just opened up the small sketch book I had in my office drawer, perfect for this project, and got to it. Also at my desk, there is a glue stick, a box of cut out words, and a tin of  120 Prismacolor pencils.

The sketch book is one I bought when I was visiting my friend Patti Digh while we met up for tea at Malaprops book store in Asheville. It is 4×6 when closed and I can already tell the small size will keep me from getting overwhelmed by this project. It is the perfect diversion when my eyes or my brain need a break from the computer screen at work.

I also posted another round of The Gratitude Project on my facebook page. Here is the offer I made:

Feels like it is time for another round of The Gratitude Project. The first 5 people to post a comment to this post will receive something handmade (by me) by the end of 2014. The only requirement is that you post the same offer and follow through with your intention to do this. No, I won’t be checking. It’s all about having some integrity in what you are putting out into the universe.

If you have participated in the past, it is fine to do so again…I was going to say as long as you followed through with the commitment in the past, but that is tha past and I am trying to stay focused on the present…so let’s say instead it is okay to participate again as long as you fully intend to follow through with your part of the bargain.

Now, if you are thinking you aren’t artistic or crafty enough to participate, well let’s just shut that down right now. Handmade doesn’t have to be by you. There are wonderful opportunities to support a plethora of artists (etsy anyone?) and everyone is encouraged to take this on and put your best self out there just a little.

I had four sign ups the first day, My cousins Donna and Jaye, my sister-in-law Yvonne, and my friend Deborah. there is still an opening for one more and if it isn’t filled by the end of the week I will randomly assign someone. If you want to sign up and can’t find the fb post, just leave a comment here.

More Abstract Adventure

Friday, May 20th, 2011

Glad it is Friday. I don’t know if I could take another day in this work week as it is totally kicking my ass. Still trying to find a painting groove. I don’t think being un-enamored with it has anything to do with the size of this journal, but more to do with there being zero sense of confidence in knowing what I am doing. I try to just do it anyway, but it is a challenge. I can appreciate that I am just throwing paint down on a page and that it can become background paper for a later date.It doesn’t have to look like anything  and there isn’t necessarily a right or wrong. This however, seems terribly unfinished. Or maybe just terrible. I’ll ponder that and take a bite of my cake pop.

I have been trying to get two Gratitude Project gifts finished up. I have made a couple journally note book sorts of things and while I like how they have turned out, I am feeling like maybe I should stick to knitting my gratitude gifts…except maybe sometimes the recipient isn’t a knitwear type of person…

I brought pieces to work today to finish them up and both glue sticks I had on my desk just ran out. I really had hoped to put these in the mail today before starting on my new workshop this weekendI find it interesting that both journal covers have elephants on them. Sort of makes it feel like a phase. Also an elephant in a spread I did inside one of them…hmmm….

The new class is called BIG and is by Connie of Dirty Footprints Studio. It is a 6 week long online workshop and will feature her method for FEARLESS painting (think big here) and my plan is to pretend I am in any way comfortable with this.

There is a focus on process not product and this is something I have been working on. With knitting, I am totally a process knitter and knit for the sake of knitting. I get totally lost in it at times and feel it nourishes me in some necessary way. I can totally dig it as a process activity, but in part that is because there *is* a tangible resulting product.

With painting, not so much. At least not yet… and there is a serious learning curve going on here…so please, pardon the crap that will appear here over the next few weeks…

Gratitude Project

Friday, December 3rd, 2010

I decided to santa 5 people this season as part of the ongoing Gratitude Project. 2 people were previous recipients. I am ready to send to the third and still thinking on the 4th and 5th.

Of course, this means more mail art.

Lady Eleanor…

Friday, June 4th, 2010

My first felting project was a Lady eleanor Stole gone wrong. I was 2 balls of Noro Kureyon into it when it occurred to me how warm it was sitting in my lap, and how inescapable that warmth would be the more of it I knit. Kureyon is wool and a worsted wool at that. That means it’s heavy. A little too heavy to get much use in Houston.

As I folded what I had already knit in half, the knitting was covering my laptop that was on the table in front of me. I knew from reading about felting that most things shrink 30%. this seemed about a third bigger than my laptop…hmm…

I made the decidion to sew up the sides of my bag and give it a try. She turned out pretty good and I learned some things about felting in the process. I also didn’t have to rip out all that knitting. the bag was a perfect fit for my at the time new Mac iBook. Now that the iBook has a new home, I use the bag as a knitting bag or sometimes as a lunch bag or just…a bag.

More recently, I knit this Lady E as part of the Gratitude Project for my friend Beth. This one was in a bulkier yarn and soft and luscious in shades of pink and black. I tried knitting a basic striped wrap with this same yarn and it looked like barf. Lady E was the perfect solution.

About three or four years ago, I had some extra birthday cash that coincided with a less than pleasant dental appointment. As a reward for keeping the appointment and making it through it, I stopped and bought some Noro Silk Garden Lite that was intended to make a Lady Eleanor that wouldn’t be interminably hot for the Houston clime. There was a sale involved plus a quantity discount, so I ended up with 14 balls of the same color and dye lot. Woohoo. I think i was in there choosong for more than an hour.

I thought the yarn was various shades of pinks and browns. I think I even remember the blues peaking about. I had no idea about the lime0ish green, or even the mossy green, but I have to say I absolutely love them. With noro, there are often color surprises hidden deep within the ball making it necessary ro look closely to know what you are getting. I am sure I didn’t know this then but really, I wouldn’t want it any other way.

This Lady E is color way number 2014 lot B. somepeople, when knitting with Noro, will painstakingly cut and splice so that they have a continual progression of color patterning throughout their garment. That. Will. Not. Happne. Here.

I am about halfway through the second ball and finding it rather addicting. L O V E it.

Color Week White/Grey

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

The final day of color week was a choice of either white/grey or rainbow. You might think I would play the gay card and choose rainbow, but since a lot of my other knitting was more than just the color of the day, I decided to go with whites/grey instead.

The white tam is called Snow  Star Hat and is from the first issue of St-Denis magazine and by Veronique Avery. I couldn’t find her new yarn Nordique and substituted Nashua Creative Focus from my stash. The hat was a challenge from some knitter friends. We challenged each other to be out of our knitting comfort zones. Cabling makes me a little manic, so it qualified. I think the weight of the yarn itself was okay but I should have used a smaller needle. The hat is, umm, big, but Elizabeth says she likes it. I still think maybe it should be reknit a little tighter.

The scarf is a basic fisherman’s lace stitch with some not so basic yarn from out trip to Alaska. While there I bought a few luscious skeins from anindie dyer, Raven Frog Fiber Arts. If you ever cruise Alaska, you will find her stuff everywhere. I think this was called twisted and it came in a lovely 8 ox hank. I made three of these scarves with her yarn, one going to Sally as part of the Gratitude Project, and the other two living right here with me. This colorway is called Glacier. You have to be in good light to see even the slightest hint of blue in the mostly white and greys. Definitely would like more of this yarn.

In the mail…

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010

Stuff is in the mail. Almost all of it. the only remaining thing that needs to be in the mail is a sample of some yarn I have to send to Fleece Artist for them to match and send me back enough to finish a Lady of the Lake sweater I am working on. It was almost done. It was almost going on vacation to South Africa with me. I ran out of one of the yarns just before I finished the second sleeve and still need some for the collar. Truth be told, I would like the sleeves to be longer, too, but I can live with them the length they are (about 3/4) if I only get enough new yarn for the collar. time will tell. but that is what isn’t in the mail.

What is in the mail is the first few items for my ongoing Gratitude Project. Last year I did a meme which I took from Annie Modesitt’s blog. The first 5 people to reply get something handmade by me. They, in turn, post the same offer on their own blog, and Gratitude ripples across the water ad finitum. I really enjoyed participating in that, and since then I have had an ongoing Gratitude List stuck on my keyboard at work. When someone or something strikes me in a certain way, I add them to the list. The list itself is a little one inch Post-It note, so it never gets out of hand, and I just crossed 4 names off it which makes room for four more. So far, it is a good outlet for my knitting obsession.

This quilt square is also out the door. We participated in a group quilting project with some lovely ladies in CT. The only rules were that we had to use 100% cotton fabric, and we had to incorporate a sample provided to us. The two chicks are the incorporated fabric. It’s finished and in the mail. It even has a tracking number!

I also got something in the mail yesterday, a book I had ordered called The wonderful Weekend book by Elspeth Thompson. So far, it’s lovely and I am enjoying it. The focus is on reclaiming the weekend for personal relaxation and balance. The author is English, so it’s rather…Brittish…maybe a tad pretentious…but it is what it is and I find it somehow delightful.

I almost forgot to mention the journal project I am doing. I started a round robin journal project in the Simple Living group on Ravelry. 9 of us are participating and as it is my first time doing such a thing, it feels rather loosey goosey in terms of guidelines. Basically each person starts a journal, whether written, collage, painted pages, whatever, and we mail them to each other every 2 weeks or so. Eventually, if the universe is being kind, your original journal comes back to you.

Time to flee to the Island. Maybe more later, maybe not.