Saturday, January 29, 2005

Gold Gold and More Gold

If I wasn't already hooked on doing goldwork, I would be after last weekends workshop with Linn. We had 12 of us in my living room beta testing a new class. In the past, the classes for Goldwork were very directed toward metal thread couching and laying bullion - the traditional stuff. This one was aimed to be more of the decorative arts. We did - spangles in singles and multiples, s-ing and z-ing, trying to do s-ing on top of the spangles, broad platt, ribbled plate with beads, bits of bullion and other decorative bits, goldwork picots as edging for cutwork (very 16th C. Italian) and kid. Everyone got through the hard bits fairly quickly. The what to do with the kid was fairly free form and some opted to take it home and play there. Wonderful play time!

Monday Linn was engaged to teach at the Milpitas ANG - a pulled work class. She had 12-14 signed up for the class which is a good showing for that chapter. We also were able to finish arranging for her to do a Wild and Wonderful mixed media workshop class in June for my EGA chapter. More play time!

Spent the rest of the week trying to finish recovering from the cold from hell. The cold is long over, but the cough just keeps staying on and on. It also seems to keep the brain in a fog. Makes it hard to get work done.

Lots to do next week. I'm doing the lead article for the Guild newsletter - Pulled Work (just because I'm no longer Guild Minister does not mean I get to rest). Then need to do my next article for Needlepoint Now -- Blackwork Bands. If I have time I need to get my costumes together and perhaps make up a new underdress or two for the Estrella War over Presidents Day Weekend in Goodyear Arizona (near Phoenix). Of course I couldn't just let things be. I volunteered, much to their joy, to do 2 simple blackwork introduction classes at the Collegium part of the war.

Lots to do!

Friday, January 21, 2005

More Students Hooked

Home from Alaska with a miserable cold - I hate being sick. It was cold. Colder than expected. The weather report suggested that it would be in the 20's during the day and teens at night. I think the high was 16. Despite the cold it was a great trip. Good friends. Real interest in needlework and it was my privilege to teach and inspire a few of them.

The event was at a senior center an hour and half out of Anchorage - north out of Anchorage. We were lodged at a motel connected to a bar and semi-food place. Unfortunately they don't really have no smoking rooms -- something about a central air intake... Oh well - at least the rooms were warm and they had their own in room facilities.

The event was over 200 people and they feed us 3 meals Saturday, 3 Sunday and 2 on Monday. Evening meals were sit down feasts. Saturday was some court and the fighting. Yes outside in the snow - temperature around zero. Sunday was Lucet I and then lots of court. Unfortunately court and meetings ran over so Lucet II was put off to Monday. Fortunately Their Majesties took pity on us and let us sit in chairs behind them during the long court. Monday ran Lucet II and Pulled Work back to back. Think I've converted all my student to lucet and pulled work [insert big grin]. Came home with 3 of the 8 lucets the husband, dear husband, made up for me to teach the class. Someday I'll learn not to sell off all the teaching tools.

Sunday night was a wonderful and rare experience. The Aurora Borealis was putting on a great show. Light streaking the sky in pale yellow and green. Tornados of light. And then RED in a huge wave across part of the sky. It is really rare to see red.

Home on Tuesday evening around 8 pm - a couple hours late due to flight delays. All the bags made it up and back with us this time. Talked to some of the people from Fairbanks. They'd like to have me up for their Labor Day event to teach so we shall see what can be arranged.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

On to more teaching and learning

Managed to both survive 12th Night - 18 hours on my feet and enjoy the experience. The event went smoothly once everything was set up and underway. Stepped down from Kingdom Arts and Needleworkers Guild Minister. Of course I will still be around to help with the Arts stuff. They don't call me Arts Babe for nothing. As the former Guild Minister, I became Guild Patron. As Patron, I'll continue to help in a number of different capacities; primarily overseeing several projects. Everyone wanted to know what I was going to do with all my "free" time. Ha! What free time?????????

Off to Alaska for 5 days. It is their 20th Anniversary of becoming a Principality and I was there 20 years ago so.... They are so hungry to learn so I'm teaching 3 classes - Basic Lucet - Square and Flat Braid, Beyond Basic Lucet - 2 colors and Beads, and Pulled Work. Haven't taught the lucet classes for a year so updated the handouts. Haven't taught the pulled work class for a couple years. Took one look at the handout and said -- yuck! So have spent the last couple days frantically redoing the piece. It went from 4 pages to 8 and I chose some different stitches. I really only want to do stuff that is documentable to before 1650. Very limiting. Most of the whitework was drawn thread, cutwork or needlelace -- and then bobbin lace (not needlework so not within the Needleworkers Guild - it is Arachne's Web which is a different guild). Found enough to do a 4-6 hour workshop. Many many thanks to Linn Skinner for doing the charts for me. I don't do PC and the only stitch charting programs are PC. Should be fun. Now all I need to do is decide what I want the students to do - a design or just doodle cloth. Decisions decisions decisions.

When I come back, then we get ready to have Linn come up for a weekend and teach Advance Goldwork. I can't wait. I'm really looking forward to learning more Goldwork stuff. I've even signed up for one of the Royal School of Needlework classes in April. All I need to do now is book my flight to Des Moines.

Monday, January 03, 2005

When You Want Something Done Give it to a Virgo

Couldn't resist doing this "quiz". Several people have lately accused me of being very Virgo. Since my birthday is on the cusp, I tend to think I have some virgo, but not quite this much. Enjoy!

You are 87% Virgo

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Time Flies - Happy New Year

It is hard to believe that nearly a month has past since I last blogged. Lots of work and year end crunch. Parties with friends and Dickens Faire (yes I went in costume and won a hall costume prize). Madly scrambling to finish the holiday shopping only to find that the family events were to encompass twice as many people so scrambled for more presents. A marathon wrapping session with lots of help - both the useful kind - the husband, and the fun kind - 2 cats. Then on to prep for 12th Night.

On the needlework side, my next column for Needlepoint Now is due today and the last will hit the magazine stands this week, I hope. Writing it was easy and it is a subject I enjoy - Elizabethan Slips. A friend gave me pics of some that she had done for the visual interest. The project is an insert for a key chain fob. Since I want some detail on the flower, I think I'm going with 40 count gauze and silk. Need to stitch it today to see if my vision and chart work.

The creative process is interesting. Sometimes I start with an idea and just stitch. Other times I draft it on the computer and then stitch it. Don't know why one or the other works -- or doesn't work as the case may be. The colors will be ones I have around. Since I like doing roses, I have lots of appropriate colors in silks in my stash. I didn't really understand about stash until a couple years ago. Before I just had what I needed for projects. I did understand UFOs, but then I was raised with lots of them. But stash is different. I joined a "birthday club" of needleworkers around the world. I had fun buying stuff and getting stuff. Slowly my stash grew. One lady even shared some of her stash so I could try a particular type of silk on a project - 10 whole skeins worth! Stash is a GOOD THING.

Now down to stitching and indulgence. We received the Lord of the Rings Return of the King extended edition for Christmas. Needless to say, we need to review the other 2, in extended edition first. Our very own LOTR marathon since we don't do the bowl games. Of course we did start the year with the Rose Parade - commercial free, pancakes, sausage, and coffee - and of course 2 cats in the sun.

Hope you have a healthy happy 2005.