but I think it’ll be obvious where this is going. I recently unearthed this flannel board story my twentysomething self illustrated during my pre-school teaching years. I have not drawn or water colored much since. but have been thinking a lot about how trying my hand at drawing again, and just how much I’m beginning to resemble this old lady. I mean, I’d even wear that apron. OMG! Does it not look like just like the little collage of me at the top of the sidebar? Hillarious!
I can’t beleive it’s been a whole year! This weekend She Creates Union participated as a group in the Elgin Art Studio Tour. This time last year Emma and I were hatching an idea for a group for women makers and artists whose sole function was to fully support each member creatively while helping each other navigate branding, social media, marketing, and general business best practices.
While there are groups like BossBabesATX that organize events and meet-ups in Austin, we were interested in forming a more intimate community in our small town just 19 miles east of Austin and the neighboring towns like Paige, Bastrop, amd Lexington. We particpate here in local events and will be expanding our efforts later this year to markets in Austin and Pflugerville.
Since we formed SCU we have participated in one large festival, an art studio tour, and a couple pop-up shops. We meet once a month and talk about things we’ve been thinking about doing, things we’ve done, and generally cheer eachother on.
Whether at our monthly meeting or via our Slack channel, there is always some nudging, sometimes gently, sometimes not, eachother to raise our prices. We generally suck at pricing our work, but we’re getting better.
I recently saw this quote, “You’re priceless, your work is not.” I cannot find where I saw this yet, but wil link when I do.
To say we’ve all learned a lot in the past year would be an understatement. We are constantly investigating and learning as individuals and bringing our acquired knowledge to the group. Sometimes these fact finding misssions look like sitting in a sales tax class, taking an online course, or visiting a craft market or festival. It’s all learning.
Slowly but surely the living room studio is taking shape. I need to think a little on how to best sort and store the million little bits that I use, but I have already been able to jump in and get to work without having to haul everything out of a closet or make room for dinner prep. I love it. I highly recommend carving out your own space to make things if you can. Also, it still is cozy, if not cozier. It is now my favorite room to read, drink coffee, and write my blog posts in the morning before I scoot off to work.
The natural light in this room is perfect all day, bright and golden in the morning and softer as the day rolls on. It’s the perfect place for Olive and I to watch the parade of dogs on walks, neighbors driving their riding mowers to the gas station, and the man on the yellow bike who argues with himself all the time.
I was gifted these great, wide, wooly scarves a few years ago. While each of these scarves are truly wonderful on their own, I decided they would be more wonderful and get more use if I stitched them together.
I picked a grey wool yarn to just whipstitch them. I like the contrast, and the visible stitches. Three unworn scarves are now one chunky, graphic, textural throw to hunker down for a rainy weekend of British TV and cooking shows. It remind me of a Swiss army watch for some reason.
I discovered Hatch Show Prints on a 1999 DC to LA road trip with my sister Jessica. We’d spent the prior night in Asheville, NC and were headed to Memphis, along the way we stopped at the Country Music Hall of Fame. While the Nudie Suits were the initial draw for me, it’s the posters that had my full attention. I saw a sign that said the posters had been printed locally, and told Jess we needed to head there ASAP. Jim Sherraden was our tour guide. I was hooked. I could not get the presses, the wood type, and the smell of the ink out of my mind for the rest of the road trip. That road trip and accidental visit to Hatch is what inspired me to learn to print and get a publishing job. True story.
I’ll be firing up Bee this week to print some letterpress cards. Look for a shop update soon.
I am hell bunt on draping bunting, garland, or pennants from every shelf and window frame I can get my grubby hands on. Wow, I am inspired by these lovely collage pennants. The wheels are spinning. Steve will be thrilled! He already complains there are tote bags hanging from every door knob. Let’s call them door bunting… but functional.
Look how cool this photo garland is.
Are bunting, and garland the same thing?
a coarse, open fabric of worsted or cotton for flags, signals, etc.
patriotic and festive decorations made from such cloth, or from paper, usually in the form of draperies, wide streamers, etc., in the colors of the national flag.
flags, especially a vessel’s flags, collectively.
a wreath or festoon of flowers, leaves, or other material, worn for ornament or as an honor or hungon something as a decoration:A garland of laurel was placed on the winner’s head.
a representation of such a wreath or festoon.
a collection of short literary pieces, as poems and ballads; literary miscellany.
Nautical . a band, collar, or grommet, as of rope.
This week I’ve been knitting and watching Sir Edmond Hilary, Everest and Beyondand making comments about every hand knit sweater that appeared. Steve asked me if this was a thing with knitters, and did we all talk about it online. There usually is quite a bit. I remember we all went crazy when Bletchley Circle aired. I’m surprised to not find a lot of discussion about these knits online, as they are all spectacular.
Food for thought
I’m embarrassed to admit this but we waste a lot of food in my household. And by we, I mean me, because my husband is far less particular about eating deli meat and leftovers that have been in the fridge for 3 days. I was made very aware of this when I was volunteering at our community food pantry and humbled by how happy the clients were to receive a clamshell pack of almost gone strawberries that I would have tossed or thrown in the compost heap. Ahem, the compost heap is one way I rationalize waste.
I’ve recently started utilizing curbside pick-up at my local grocery during the work week. Not only do I believe this is saving us money, but it’s virtually impossible to get distracted by all the lovely berries and fresh greens when I’m adding things to my online shopping cart.
This Real Simple article has great tips for reducing food waste at home. Keeping a “waste audit” is a great idea.
Knitting together community for 11 years
Tomorrow our favorite LYS Yarnorama (that’s local yarn store for the non-knitters) is celebrating 11 years of (insert fiber metaphor here) community in the tiny town of Paige, Texas. Weavers, knitters, spinners, and fiber obsessed have been making the weekly trek from Houston to be part of a community of fiber enthusiasts and friends.
The other night at our She Creates Union meet up, Susan talked about what the community she started has come to mean to her. It’s not my story to tell, so that’s all I say. Perhaps she’ll elaborate herself on her own website. It was lovely, and made us all bit misty.
Everyone who knows Susan and John, knows they have created something very special, and so obviously needed. Susan is a brilliant, patient, talented, and funny woman who nurtures us all in our endeavors to make beautiful things with our hands.
I like to brag that I was her first customer. Susan reached out to me on this blog before she even opened her doors, inviting me to her opening.
Let’s go back in time to read this blog post about my first visit to Yarnorama. I obviously felt that something special was going to happen there. Read the post here