Friday, October 30, 2009

An Embroidered Piece for a Change



This is a piece I did during the summer before the summer became my long dark night of the soul. It is called Crossing Also. I looked back quite a ways and realized I hadn't share it and I really love it . Watercolored fabric with a variation of a cross and lots and lots of french knots. I'm getting the itch to do more hand embroidery so I'm hoping just posting it will inspire me to break out the watercolors and the embroidery needles.

Crossings Also is now at the Albany Shaker Museum for the season and for some reason I'm feeling really empowered about having my work at Albany Shaker and having the universe(and the lovely volunteers) work at selling it. I've thought a lot about my future plans and have to say no second thoughts about limiting myself to the Albany Shaker craft fairs, my wonderful sales outlets and hopefully very soon Etsy. I'm still working on my office almost as much as my crafts in hope that soon I will be organized enough to wade out into the Etsy ocean.

In other news, I have to pass along a great CD for you walkers. Maybe too great a CD for walking in a public place but whatever. I love the Killers and have their latest CD. I loved to listen to it when crocheting cos it's young and cool. Well it is great to walk around the track at the Y. 45 minutes flies by and today I even ran a little bit, can you imagine? There is one song on there, Joy Ride it is my favorite, favorite song to walk to, pratically dance and very motivating. So I get over the idea that I probably look like a nut when I can't control my head and my hands and my feet in public. But if you are a walker go buy the CD!

Blessings and Keep stitching.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Albany Shaker Holiday Show



The photograph accompanying this post is Water Goddess, its hand embroidery on watercolored fabric with Kantha stitching surrounding it(which I tried because of my fondness for Spirit Cloth and Bee Creatives wonderful work). The Kantha stitching really made the water goddess pop so thanks to those two wonderful inspiring ladies. The Water Goddess is now residing in the Albany Shaker Museum for the holiday show which runs from October 31st to December 19th. There are so many lovely crafters, even more then last year and such wonderful wonderful work. My friend Cheryl(the lady's got glass) has beautiful bowls and vases and the most extraordinary ornaments. My friend Pat has beautiful jewelry made from precious metal clay, my friend Karen is there with her beautiful hand knit children sweaters, my friend Becky(from Purl One and Purl two) is there with her beautiful felted purses(I hate to felt and love to see her beautiful wares). Well I guess you get the idea that you can find really beautiful gifts there that are handmade by real people(hooray). The ladies who volunteer there are fabulous and welcoming also, it's a joy to work with them too. The holiday show is open from 10 to 4 daily (closed on Sunday) and 30% of the proceeds goes to the Shaker Heritage Society to keep the museum and grounds open. So if you are in the area of Albany Airport in beautiful Albany NY follow the signs and take a look. You won't be disappointed.

While I'm talking up my sales outlet if you are in Schenectady at the beautiful Proctors or having lunch in any of the wonderful restaurants there don't forget the Katbird Shop(also chock full of beautiful handmade items and antiques too), if you are at LoPorto in Troy or any of the other restaurants there check in on Artcetera on 4th Street and if you are in Saratoga take a look at the New Leaf Gallery, it opened this summer so if you haven't been there recently take a trip. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful.

Once again whereever you call your home, try the little galleries and gift shops where people sell what people make. I know that perhaps the prices are a wee bit higher then Walmart but once again the only way to cure our economy is to shop in the little stores and KEEP THEM OPEN! Not just that but there is such a difference in the quality of the work and the uniqueness of the gift you will give. Blessings to all! Hope to see you in any of these wonderful hand made galleries!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Cute Little Purse



This is one of the cute little knit purses I made for the Albany Shaker Holiday Show which starts this weekend. I love to make them and bead them and yes even line them. I think I'm going to make some for the Katbird Shop and New Leaf Gallery.

Busy, busy, busy is the word. I won't be able to completely relax till I am set up on Wednesday and on my home. But I am enjoying the making much more then I was earlier this year. They say the way to abundance is to do what you love and somewhere it became more about something else(like money). I love what I do but when you try to put a price tag on something you love, it becomes something other then something you love. But the love and joy of creativity is back and we'll see where that leads to.

Hope you are having a very stitchy day. I'm finally feeling better this evening after my sinuses went haywire. I'm eating so well I thought my immune system was working better so I stopped the Nasonex. Well after a few days of sinus hell having to use a decongestant, Claritan and saline nasal spray, the Nasonex is back. Have a great night see you soon.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Happy

I'm amazed today at just how little it takes to make me happy. Yesterday and today I have been getting ready for the big holiday show at Albany Shaker and so I decided to make a few holly and berry pillows. Well I was embroidering and listening to Andrea Bocelli and I felt wonderfully peaceful and wonderfully happy. I had forgotten just how little it takes to make me peacefully, joyfully happy. Somewhere in the last year I lost the joy of embroidering and it makes me sooooooo happy to have found the joy again. That is my quest now to work with joy and happiness and peace. I also finished my circle hand which is going to visit the Katbird Shop shortly afterward(the most wonderful shop in Schenectady with unique gifts in every(and I do mean every) price range). I still have to frame it and then I will share it. No mats to my amazement so it will have to wait till a trip to Michaels so perhaps later in the week. I'll let you know when it is in it's new home and share a photo. I've also made some cute new knit bags which I love, love, love. No pictures(as they don't have linings yet). Well I can go on for hours but I think I'll stop here and go visit my bloggy friends. Check back soon for photos and enjoy the rest of your weekend in joy and happiness too!

Friday, October 23, 2009

My favorite scarf




This has to be my favorite scarf at the moment. I love it so much I was tempted to pilfer it for myself instead of bringing it to the Albany Shaker Museum next week for their annual Christmas Show but I just couldn't bring myself to do it. I can always make another one. It is different greens and blue circles connected by a two crossover brown pieces. It was a challenge but I love the way it turned out and I'm hoping someone else will too. And now I have to make another one!

I hope you are having a wonderful day and I'll be back soon. Keep stitchin!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Dreams



This is an earlier piece of hand embroidery. It is called life lines. Right now my lines are a little tangled and my brain is a little foggy. I had a delicious cinnamon bun thing which made me hyper after I ate it and now I'm sleepy and tired(which might be a good thing) and I have a massive headache(which is a not so good thing).

I have been having so many dreams lately. Both the sleep kind and the awake kind. But even my dreams are intersecting at the moment. At least once a week or sometimes even more I wake up from a dream feeling like I lost something. I never remember what it is I lost and it has gotten so bad that I am now waking my husband up when I wake up in a start. So today armed with a sugar high I went and researched what dreams of loss mean. Two things it seems. Dealing with a great transition in your life and that is certainly true with all the changes in my life, in my body, in my relationships and in my work. The other meaning is a fear of success and to be truthful I think the second of the interpretations is the more accurate one. I don't seem able to stop myself from naysaying and overanalyzing everything from my life, to my work, to how to sell my work, etc.etc.etc.

I don't seem able to handle chaos anymore and I'm thinking chaos is one of the ways that I am holding myself back. I don't necessarily want to become anally retentive about organization but I do want to lose the feeling that I am lost, or that whatever I have lost is haunting me in my dreams. I have a wonderful friend who is the best at organization and having a wonderfully striving art business and whenever I am with her(she is th friend I ate my wonderful sugary concoction with today, poor thing) I wish I could be more like her. She seems like she is very sure of her destination and she has a plan to get there. Maybe I need a plan or a personal organizer or maybe just the thought of being in the moment and dealing with the subject at hand. I love to read spiritual books and many of them stress living in the now.

So here I am at the moment, head throbbing and I am contemplating NOW. Contemplating getting my mind and my home and my body organized(I think I've figured out the body one read yesterdays entry). So I'll let you know how it's going and tomorrow I will visit all my bloggy friends. Pick one of them and read their blogs they inspire me and I'm sure they will inspire you too. Thanks for reading and if you have any clue about what my dreams of loss are or want to agree with the two meanings I've found please feel free to comment. Keep stitching.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Mediterranean Diet

What a joy! I've been to Weight Watchers dozens of times and frankly was a Weight Watchers reject. I tried South Beach but I couldn't live without my pasta and bread and cereal. I love vegetables, not so much fruit. So after I turned 50 and my body told me it was 50 I had to think of something, so I looked on line and tried to find the pros and the cons. There are lots and lots of pros which increase every single day and no cons that I can find. It's been 2 months and I'm still on it 95% of the time(a new world's record) and I've lost about 10 pounds(11 at the Y and 9 at the doctor) in a month and probably lost weight before the Y and the doctor(I stopped weighing myself when I reached a certain number). I eat all the pasta I want, lots and lots of vegetables which probably cuts down on the pasta without me even knowing it. Delicious whole grain bread, olive oil a little fish, almost no meat, a little cheese(or a lot of cheese mostly to put on pasta or in a salad) My skin is clear and soft and even my alligator feet(my feet not the alligator) are soft and smooth. I guess you could say I love it, the diet and my feet.

Since I'm making a vow to myself to blog everyday and the aftereffects of not sleeping for a couple of days I haven't done anything creative so I thought I'd share my diet with you. It's fabulous even if you hate diets and usually fail when you're on one. Dr. Oz loves it too, or so I've heard. So that's the story, hopefully will be back with a more creative blog tomorrow!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Little Drowsy

I have a new found appreciation of blogging and the wonderful blogging community(not really so new I have always been inspired and supported even when I perhaps didn't deserve it) so I am just checking in to let you know I am in the midst of a MAJOR insomnia episode so tomorrow hopefully after a good night of bright eyed and bushy tailed sleep I will be ready to continue or commence my crusade to buy handmade, buy American and buy from your local mom and pop business! PS if you have any homeopathic ideas for sleep please pass them along, two nights in a row of being up before the birds are up is not a good thing.

Monday, October 19, 2009

No Excuses



Well this meandering year has almost come to a close and I think I am pretty sure my craft show days are behind me except of course for the Albany Shaker Museum which is the best craft show experience I have ever and I do mean ever had. I want to spend my time creating work that I love and blogging. Both of which it has been a struggle to maintain considering how many inexpensive doodads one needs to create to even attempt to do the craft show market. And then when those inexpensive doodads don't sell it's even worse. So I will be opening an Etsy shop up soon(and I do mean soon, I have promised my husband I will organize my office before I undertake a virtual opportunity) and I will be posting pictures of my work which soon will be located in the Albany Shaker Museum and The Katbird Shop, New Leaf Gallery and Artcetera.

I am having soooooooo much fun creating things, I love it in fact. I love to embroider, I love to knit and I love to crochet. I am loving taking more risks with my work and trying different ideas which challenge me. I am receiving more compliments about my work then ever before so I know that it is reaching some people but maybe they are people without the money to purchase it or who simply cannot spend a big chunk on one item at a craft show when they intended to buy dozens of gifts for their family with that money. At least in a store or on Etsy people are there to buy(or look but at least the rejection isn't so personal).

From now on I will be writing more about myself, my work and my sales outlets(but hopefully not to the point of obnoxiousness, I despise selling myself and things that come from me) and my bloggy friends, their accomplishments, places and people that interest me on the blogosphere and right here in Upstate NY. I have always wanted to be a writer and this may be my only shot.

OK I am usually very politically opinionated and have spared people from my opinions because like pimples everybody has them, but I have been disgusted lately by several of the commercials on my television and somehow they fit the topic of my blog. I have finally reached my limit with Walmart. I guess because the economy is so bad it is impossible to watch television for more then an hour and not see several Walmart commercials. They tell us we can save money if we don't go to our local coffee shop and buy coffee and breakfast, they tell us we can save money if we don't go to our local pizzeria and buy their pizza, We can even watch football games with our family for less if we go to Walmart and don't go to our local grocer or deli and buy chips from there. They sell everything in Walmart but what they don't tell you is that everytime you buy an item from them and not your local salesperson you are helping to close a business, maybe one that has been open for weeks maybe one that has been serving their community for decades(not to mention what a Walmart mentality has done to the art and craft community). I'm just a little fish in a big sea and I know times are tough and we all need to save but just do one little thing for me. If you go to Walmart 3 weeks out of 4 please go see your local sales outlets too. We have fabulous small farms right here in my neck of the woods where you can buy delicious apples and apple cider donuts. We have a fabulous yarn shop just a little jaunt away in Saratoga on Broadway, you will never find anything close to their yarn in any of those big box stores no matter how cheap it is. We have restaurants and galleries and little mom and pop stores where people talk to you and remember you. I am thrilled every Friday when I go to my local pizza shop and the woman who is the Mama in Mama Rosa's says hi Deb. Can't beat it and worth an extra dollar to be thought of as a person.

So I'm off my high horse and I intend to regale you with tales of local businesses or beautiful hand crafted lovelies from all over the web and my local neighborhood and maybe even my own work too. I used to joke that my only job opportunity beyond my own little craft business was getting a job in Walmart, but unfortunately the way the economy is looking we are all going to be working for Walmart someday. See you tomorrow and keep stitching.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

News and Passion



Passion! That is the name of this piece and the perfect beginning for my news of the day. Passion resides at The Katbird Shop until someone decides they must bring Passion home. The Katbird Shop is located on Liberty Street in Schenectady a little bit away from the restaurant Pinhead Susans(delicious food by the way).I will be giving a class on crochet on Wednesday October 21st at 1:00. It is a beginner crochet class and I will teach single crochet and double crochet (and of course the chain stitch without all else would be futile) and the student will put those stitches into their own scarf(bring your own yarn 2 skeins and a size H crochet needle). I'm recommending inexpensive worsted weight for the class because although the students will go home with a scarf the first project is always the trickiest. The cost is $25.00 and if you are interested in attending you can call Kathy at the Katbird Shop at (518)381-1671. I also brought Kathy some lovely scarves and bags and am adding new work all the time.

I have also found a new outlet for my work in Saratoga Springs. The New Leaf Art Gallery and Boutique located at 30 Beekman Street. They will be selling my bags and scarves. It is a lovely location in the historic Beekman Street location. There are other galleries on the street and a lovely restaurant if you are in the neighborhood.

I dropped off some new bags to Debra at Artcentric which is located on 4th Street in Troy. I will also be in the Albany Shaker Christmas Show which opens in just a few weeks.

I have added a link to my friend Cheryl's website The Lady's Got Glass. I have wanted you to see her beautiful work for ages but she just recently put up her own website, her work is beautiful and she is passionate about what she does. Her website is in the beginning stages but it does show you how talented Cheryl is and tells you where she will be showing her work(Cheryl also has her work at Katbird Shop and Artcentric along with other beautiful galleries).

Also my friend Judy(counting backwards) has her work in Artique a new coop in Clifton Park. She takes the most beautiful photographs and makes crocheted Yarmulkes.

Finally the passion has returned. I am keeping myself sooooooo busy with crochet and embroidery so that is the reason my entries have been slow for the last few weeks. I am so getting into the texture and color of the crochet and knitting and I'm having a wonderful time making new things. I've decided to dwell on the passion of creating and let the marketing and sales things take care of themselves. I was so worried about the profit margin that I was losing the love of what I did over the summer. So I can't live without my love of yarn and thread and color and texture so I'll let go and let God so to speak.

Thanks for stopping in. I've added links to all of my work venues and important friend sites. Give them a look!Keep stitching.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Brown



That is the color of the bag I am highlighting today. Brown, multiple colors of brown, textured, very textured, hand crocheted from my finest stash. I love the way this bag feels, I know you miss that part of the sensory experience but I love the softness of this bag anyway.

Life has been good. I have been very, very industrious and have worked my way out of yet another funk(this was only a couple of days by the way). I'm getting used to my son being gone most of the day and even a few nights with out with some lovely lady friends of his. I've been enjoying my wonderful friends and have brought a few things to Katbird Shop and Artcetera if you are in the neighborhood. I'm ready to try and find another outlet too as I am finally over the summer thing. To be honest I think I needed to be available for my family this summer and I was. I've also decided to let my work represent me more soulfully so a lot of my new work(which I haven't photographed yet) is a little more chaotic and twisty turny. There is no use fighting the twisty turny path I'm on anymore so I'm going with the flow and getting there using all my needles.

I know I've been a lousy blogger as of late and it's been really hard to follow me, but I think the worst is behind me and I'm moving forward. I have quite a few projects waiting to be photographed so even if I can't think of anything to say I'll try to add a picture every couple of days. Thanks if you've been checking in, I really appreciate it. Keep stitchin.