First, I want to thank Dave for his concern over my finishing the sewing project the other day. I DID get it finished – the machine soldiered on. Had to slow the pace, but made it through.
In fact, I made two prototypes and let the former PCV decide which would work best. She chose the one which utilized the width of the traditional strip weaving in the shoulder strap and had a drawstring closure (thanks, Mary, for your ideas!). It is in Mali right now, but I don’t think it will find its way to the proper co-op until later in the month, towards the end of her visit. If nothing else, maybe it will give them some ideas for items to sell.
The last couple days have been spent with my hands wet with gut working on some smaller wall grids out of willow and gut. The weather has been great – not too hot or humid – for working outside and drying the finished work. Listened to two more Fforde books while working: The Eyre Affair and The Fourth Bear. Love the irony and puns!
I’m anxiously awaiting some pH test strips that I ordered – they will show all levels of alkalinity. I’ve got a spot of experimenting to do as soon as they come in – I want to check pH levels while testing my water vs distilled and muds vs pigments and soda ash in the mud vs on the cloth first. I know my water is really alkaline due to our hot tub experience; now to find out just how much so.
I hope the students I have this weekend doing mudcloth are as excited as I am about finding alternative ways of making this work!