Monday, August 31, 2009

Inspirational Words

Jason is busy, busy, busy hammering, drilling, cutting and filing in order to get these and many more finished.
Here is a preview of a few, coming soon to Sues website.
Keep creating

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Dear Carol

While Sue it trying to pull herself out of jet lag fog and figure out which continent she is on I thought I would post an update on my friendship blanket. A little while ago I posted my first blanket square made of yarn I dyed with a group of friends and here is an update. I still have quite a few to finish but its coming along.
I laid them out on my brand new deck outside my office.  I get to sit out on it now instead of worrying about falling through it. I know the building code police wont like the lack of railing which is yet to come but I actually prefer it without it.
Back to the right of the picture on the neighboring property is a horse stable. In the spring we are lucky enough to watch the foals growing up in the field below but I suspect the economy changed that this year and so I now sit and listen to the bleating of goats.
Yes goats!  There are also a few sheep for good measure. This is all a new experience and I have to say I love it.  Sometimes it sounds like they are very distressed and the other day I discovered one reason why that might be.
Meet Morgan, a lab mutt who would love to spend a good portion of his days on the other side of the fence herding said goats. 
A month ago Morgan had surgery for a suspicious tumor and I am now happy to say that even though he put me through the ringer during this time he is going to live a long happy life watching goats. He managed to scratch his stitches out not once but twice until he got his foot well wrapped hence the fluorescent pink bootie.
We had to keep a good eye on him and make sure he did not overdo it so I decided I would only let one dog out at a time. One morning I did just that and a little while later heard this rather high pitched bark coming from the fence line. Sounded like something I needed to investigate so I went to have a look and saw Morgan standing on one side of the fence and a noisy goat on the other. I pondered not sure what to make of it. I got my shoes and off I went down the hill to get a better look. Its one feisty goat I thought to myself until I noticed it had a rather panicked look in its eyes. Low and behold the poor thing had been tempted by the nice green grass on our side and managed to get his head through the fence but those nice horns kept him pinned in place much to Morgan's delight. Good news is I eventually unhinged the poor creature. So now every time I hear a deathly bleat or a high pitched bark I run to the window to make sure a 100 lb dog isnt tormenting the neighbors. 
Did I say earlier I loved this???
Anyway this is a very long winded way to get to the title of this posting.
Dear Carol I heard you were waiting patiently for an answer to your question about how I dyed all this yarn in the first place. I am blaming the dog for my lack of response! I promise there will be one coming in full sometime soon. 

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Welcome home!!!

Dear Sue, Cathy and Aimee
A big welcome home to all of you.
I am sure you are weary travelers but I know you have had a great trip.
We look forward to hearing all about it.
Love to you all

Monday, August 17, 2009


Since there is quite a lot of things happening around here at the moment I thought I would post a few photos of last weeks dye testing results. 
Above are the results of day one and two, below the results of day three.
They have all been catalogued and a few remaining formulas need doing but all in all I am happy with the results. It all started with Sue requesting a color for a project and snowballed from there. Quite a few of these are heading east and will be put to good use shortly.
While I was at it in the dye studio I did a few skeins of yarn to add to the stash.  Some lovely silk, bamboo, wool and a few blends. 
And these little things remain patiently on my sewing table.  They are all the cutoffs from my bow tie quilt that are going to find a new life soon.
Enjoy creating

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Color and Design

The last couple of days I have been testing some new color formulas.  Here are a few of the results so far.  I will be back at it this afternoon and will be aiming for more soft muted shades.
Last night I took a walk around the garden and since I love circles and dots so much I thought I would show you what I found.
Nature is truly complex and the structure of these flowers is remarkable. What grows right beneath my feet is a great source of inspiration.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

When the going gets tough, take a little time out.

The great advantage to living here in the Inland Northwest is the proximity to some gorgeous waters in which to put in a kayak and take a breather when life gets a little crazy. 
There is nothing that soothes my soul as much as a little time out on the water and one of my favorite spots is just two hours away.
The drive to the Clark Fork Delta is an easy one. The rewards are many and once we get into the water our favorite place to stop for lunch is this big pebble mound with views to die for. 
The women who are in my knit group also happen to belong to the local jewelry guild with me and this is a pile of pebbles that makes all our hearts sing. 
Decisions, decisions, so many choices to pick from.
A few treasures I brought home with me last time have been tumbled and are waiting to be turned into something with a little bling. 
Keep creating

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Charming Ideas!

It has been a busy time in the metals studio.
I have just sent out the next bead for the limited edition bracelet I am doing for Sue and here is a sneak peak at the progress for those of you who are not receiving it.
I have a few more charms to make and then I will be starting on producing next months bead.
Keep creating.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Treasure at the bookshop

I stopped into the local bookstore for a browse and this is what I found. 
The October edition of American Patchwork and Quilting has an article in about my sister Sue written by Linda Montet and photographed by Cameron Sadeghpour. It is beautifully photographed and makes for an interesting read. The article is a few pages and shows off Sues work and studio and all the wonderful treasures within. I would encourage any one who does not already own a copy to run out and get one quick.
To top it off there is a very cool project to make as well.  You wont want to miss this one!
Way to go Sue!
Keep creating

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Journey to Ellensburg

Jason, Sue's youngest son who has been living with us for the last year received good news last week. He is now officially qualified to go off to university this September as a Washington State resident. His beaming smile was a good indication at what a relief it was. My mom and I went to Ellensburg with him to attend his orientation session last month and after driving through the dry scrublands of the middle of the state you come to this gorge. I will be doing the drive again with Sue in September as she is coming to help move Jason in and to get a first look at where he will be spending his next four years.
His future abode for at least his first year, gotta love that fluorescent lighting! 
We even went to scope out the river and clocked the mileage to get there for when he has a bit of time on his hands to do a little fly fishing. The area is beautiful and the Cascade Range calls for a lot more exploration.
On the way out of town we stopped to look at this house, Dick and Jane's spot, which I love and was saddened to see that the Dick had passed away last year. 
Please go to to find out more about it. 
I encourage you to have a look at his reflector art on their website especially under the heading Installations and Studio Work. I love these and what great inspiration for quilts. He will be having a show of his reflector art at the gallery at Central Washington University next year. 
I love dots, in fact I cant get enough of them and these are plastic bottle tops he nailed to a wood post. The garden is filled with visual delights.
They reminded me of a project I started while Sue and I were in Australia. I kept cutting out and carrying around with me a pile of dots and finally I have started putting them to use.
Pete's family has been here visiting for awhile and I showed his two sisters my progress and so they too have started a small project using dots. We had a quick stitching lesson and picked out some scrumptious colors.
This is Nan's in beginning stages and I look forward to seeing the finished results.
Keep creating.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Dyeing with the girls!

Sorry its taken me so long to post but I will start trying to catch up a little. 
Awhile ago Janet, Deb, Bridget and I started getting together to knit and well just spend a little time together.  We decided to have a play day in our barn/studio and do a little dyeing so I ordered up some worsted weight yarn and we each dyed 6 skeins and then traded a bit of each so we all have a great selection to work with. We are making our own versions of a friendship blanket and here is the beginning of mine. I cant wait to see how they all turn out.
I cant remember who dyed this but I love the colors. 
Here is how it knit up. My first square finished. This is so addictive I just had to do another one right away.
This is a great way to play with color. I am trying to pull out the colors from the hand dyed square in the middle as well as create a balance with the borders. I will keep you posted as we all progress.
Keep creating.