Odds and Ends

Hmmm….. It is obviously well past my return to the states, I think jetlag is well and truly past (although it has been a good excuse for some things!), and I am heavily into all the activities that make a full summer.

A week after my return I worked with 161 seventh graders at Batesville Middle School for three days making coiled baskets – they were troopers and most managed to make two or more projects.

Two weeks after that I teamed up with the Southeastern Indiana Tourism Bureau to treat 54 seniors to the joys of making open-twined garlic baskets! Holding the sessions at the Great Crescent Brewery in Aurora made it very manageable – owners Dan and Lani are really sweet about making the space work out.

Since we lost so many trees last year due to the emerald ash borer, our back deck has so much less shade during the day. To make the deck more hospitable, we made a rip-stop nylon sail, 12′ x 12′, to cover a good portion of the deck. It also does a great job shading the hot tub in the morning, too!

Last weekend I was in Indianapolis for the Midwest Weavers Association’s biennial conference held at Butler University. Good connections with some long time friends; relearned ply split braiding and had great fun breaking the rules for it;   spent some time with a good friend who had recently moved to that area. Overall a good trip.

My hot tub buddies helped celebrate the summer solstice this week, but we missed getting to the blueberry farm for fresh berries. That will have to happen another day.

I have had an outdoor installation proposal accepted for the Weavers Guild of Greater Cincinnati’s member exhibit at the Fitton Art Center in Hamilton for the month of August – and I have about a quarter of the work made up so far.

The Mount St. Joseph Art Gallery has an invitational exhibit planned for October of this year and I will be one of the artists. Titled ‘Biophilia’, all the invited artists have a strong connection with the earth in their work. I’ve got two large pieces in play at the moment – one with mudded silk and waxed hand made papers that will be roughly 26′ wide and 9′ high (that looks really cool with light behind it),

and a much smaller cedar  bark and Siberian iris piece. More to do…

 

But the most important work I’ve done is to create an activity book for my grandson Ezra who will be turning one in early July. Made from a trendy short skirt and various other fabrics, it has dangling hearts, hidden pockets, buttons galore and things to do with them, laces and loops and the strangest looking ‘puppet’ thingee from a used onesie, lace, gloves and socks. Hope he has fun with it! (Will post an image after he receives it… just in case his folks see this first!)

And in two days we will have 5 year old Scarlett and her 15 month old brother Elliot here with us for some grandparent time! With luck they will stay till July 4, but we are staying open to schedule changes as we don’t know how the little guy will handle being away from mom.

Need to childproof the house tomorrow!

 

Lots of …

… irons in the fire, balls in the air, things to do!

Along with getting ready for the new Studio Collection’s Spring Sale 2015 (April 25 at Harmony Hall in Spring Grove Village), I have been prepping for the Western Wildlife Corridor’s Wildflower Show this coming Friday (tomorrow!) evening at Mt. St. Joseph University. Naturally dyed clothing and silk scarves are ready to transport.

Rack of naturally dyed clothing ready for Wildfloer Show.
Rack of naturally dyed clothing ready for Wildflower Show.

And the deadline for submitting work to the Cincinnati Book Arts Association’s annual members’ exhibit at the downtown public library is coming fast, so I’ve been working on a new book. Used the accordion fold of a hot tub filter as the pages…

Side view of the pages of the tub filter book.
Side view of the pages of the tub filter book.
Closer look at one section. Marks made with shoe polish, inks, markers, embroidery threads.
Closer look at one section. Marks made with shoe polish, inks, markers, embroidery threads.

It’s been fun to do!  Now, back to Spring Sale work…

The Dye gods…

… have been good to me! Lovely color, amazing results! My Australian series this year will definitely be a must see!

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Busy in Canbera

Just above freezing nights, but clear, sunny and in the 60’s during the days – glorious! Due to its location,the city has four distinct seasons. And due to its being a planned city, it has a healthy mix of deciduous non-native trees amongst its indigenous ones. That is rather nice, too!

I am ensconced in a visiting professor flat within the fiber workshop which is part of the Art Department and have full access to the dye studio – yippee! Had a pot already cooking within 15 hours of arriving. Here are some of my initial results from the surrounding plant life:

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Loving those gentle colors!

More downed leaves collected – off to the studio for today’s pot!

Passing days…

… here in Perth have gone quickly.

The weather has decidedly turned to fall with a crisp, cool note in the air. We had a lovely day of rain on Sunday that filled the water tanks.

Two days of mud play with 14 lovely ladies resulted in some marvelous work accomplished. Since Perth is predominantly on sand, some creative collecting was necessary to have mud/dirt that was suitable to use. Wound up with some really lovely colors.

On Monday Wendy, owner of the big copper pot, arrived. We filled both the copper and stainless steel/rusty nail pots with cold rainwater, kept a fire going under each pot and had 17 pieces in each pot by the time we were done bundling. Some did go into pots as free and easy cloth, no wrapping involved.

Tuesday was the grand opening of the bundles. The copper pot did well – a nice reddy brown achieved with the addition of eucalyptus tree bark in the yard. The stainless steel pot did super dark stuff as it had been sitting almost a week with things rotting in the pot’s water.

Still not getting many actual leaf prints, but the colors we are getting are lovely. The currajong seeds left a very yellow little spot! Pics will be posted, just not sure when.

Martien and I leave for Lake Grace early tomorrow morning. Will be doing mud and gut workshops there, too. The social scene in the evenings sound really grand: local pub for fish and chips on Friday and watching the local thespians produce Harry Potter and the Terrible Ripoff on Saturday. Can’t wait!

And I will be wearing my newest op shop rearrangement to the play!

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Detail of the top half of the garment – made from the polyester lining of a silk dress that Martien is using plus a tan silk blouse that I found. Rather stylish overall!