When I get out of practice and have no need to keep on task I tend to vegetate. It doesn’t help that I am getting older and slower. It doesn’t help that the turmoil in our country keeps me in a near constant state of stress.
My self-cure for this is to find a reason to get back into the main stream of creating. I always enjoy in person art show sales venues. I think that feedback from clients at this type of show is valuable feedback. Finding that kind of show is not always easy now that I live in a rural state that has more crafty craft shows instead of fine craft shows.
I was accepted to show and sell at the Arkansas Craft Guild’s Christmas Showcase at the fairgrounds in Little Rock. Let me tell you, I am stressing about it. It is not an inexpensive show and I am keeping my fingers crossed that I will at least make costs.
I can’t believe it has been over a year since I wrote a post here. Bless you everyone who has checked in during that time. It was a year of very little creativity.
So where was I and what was going on? My 94 year old father had been checked into a nursing home in Illinois. I had always promised him that I would not allow that. So Ron and I moved rooms and furniture around to make room for Daddy. We became his care givers until he was called home to be with my mother a year ago November 1. He made it to his 95th birthday. I had a card shower for his birthday and the joy he had opening the cards as they came in the mail! Thank you to all who participated.
I was the executor of his estate. If you are ever called upon to do this, let me tell you it is a thankless job. Well, not all the time, one brother thanked me for being strong and standing ground to carry out Daddy’s wishes. It took a year to get his Social Security finished and I am finally free to be creative.
I do have work in a new book. OURstory is available for order on Amazon. This is the label from my piece in the book.
It has been a crazy year with lots of things demanding my focus away from fiber arts. Finally today I had a chance to check on my neglected indigo vat. As I suspected, deep, dark, murky blue. Geesh, Why do I do this to myself? I know when it isn’t attended that this will happen. The indigo was totally out of reduction.
Balancing a neglected vat is like starting over. Here are the things I need to coax this back into a healthy vat. Yes, I do a bastard vat, or in other words, what ever works. The most important part of the formula are test strips. The pH has to be right for the vat to be happy and if that vat ain’t happy, mama ain’t happy!
Because my vat is in an opaque container, it is hard to see the color. So the first thing I did was scoop out a gallon of liquid into a jar. I added some magic but nothing was happening. Even though the pH was right, there was no reduction of indigo so no color was going onto the fabric. I heated the gallon of liquid, then added more Rit color remover. Finally, a bit of color change from dark indigo blue to green. There is a little coppery scum on top but no flower yet. It may take a little more tweaking. I know there is plenty of indigo left in the vat so no need to add any more indigo powder.
The big vat is staring to get some copper, no flower, but it is dyeing a healthy green on the first dip. More tweaking but it is starting to sprinkle and Arkansas needs the rain. I will check on my flowers later today to see if there is any change.
The entire collection of HERstory quilts is being shown at Road to California. Kerry Faraone was kind enough to share pictures in the HERstory artists group. I just love pictures of my work in the wild!
Hillary’s quilt is front and center with my quilt honoring Betty Frieden directly under it. Don’t they make a great pair?
Then there is my quilt honoring Alice Paul right above Jackie Kennedy. This one also appeared in Quilting Arts Magazine October/November issue. They both are in the hardcover book. Since I couldn’t see these hanging in person I am grateful to Kerry for posting them.
For our anniversary this year we revived a personal tradition of going on a weekend trip. Because our anniversary is right after Thanksgiving, we used to take that weekend for a combined trip and holiday shopping. As the family has scattered, there is more online shopping and less need to do in person gift shopping. We had not done this for a few years for many reasons, one being that we have 3 fur babies in our family who are old, need medication and frankly stay really angry at us for leaving them. This year we have been blessed with a live-in puppy sitter for the time we are away. Go Beverly!
These are the first of many photos we took of this glorious place. I will be sharing them in a series of posts. If you aren’t familiar with it, look for it on your local PBS stations. The greeting area was in this large tent, all set up for our luncheon after the tour of the farm, gardens and critters. There were people there from all across the USA!