Monday, March 12, 2007

Thank you Swap Fiend!

Thank you Swap Fiend!

I can't decide which colour to use first! I know that some of these will travel to northern Alberta with me this summer to be part of my knitting stash during the planting season. At least one of these balls of yarn has a Nancy Bush sock pattern written all over it. And in honour of the many wonderful sock patterns given to me, I've been inspired to become a better 'pattern' organizer. The sock-addict in me has so many projects in sight that it's actually overwhelmed. I'm so very, very delighted (and plan to knit the globe bowl out of wire.)

While digging through the old archives of American Craft and Craft Horizons, I came across this quote by Mary Crovatt Hambridge and thought I would share it.

Crafts are of no consequence unless they have a significance in the life of the people. To me, the crafts are not another means of adding to one's income, but a way of changing one's inner life.

This is how I feel when I sit down to knit or weave. Many years ago, (or so it seems, now that I am on the verge of being married for double-digits), my cousin gave me a set of mugs and a bowl that she'd made herself. They're lovely, fired with Japanese glazes, all earthen colours. For nearly a decade, I've sat down and used the one I designated mine every single day. It's significant to me. It's part of a ritual. I think that genuine appreciation for the handmade is within all of us, and may start with something as ordinary as a coffee mug. We may not realise how significant it is to us at the time, until the moment the coffee breaks, or our favourite hand-knitted hat is lost.

Tangentially, I also don't think anyone up and decides one day that she or he wants to be a professional craftsperson or fibre artist or artisan or whatever we choose to call it. It's a gradual thing that happens over time, as we are changed, by engaging in habits that are more tactile than theoretical, by engaging of our senses, by working at tasks that slowly but surely, just as knit stitches connect to one another, connect and shift our inner beliefs. I think this online blog world is similar in that respect too - oh yes, the irony, that our tactile habits are united by technology, I know

I keep playing around with these pieces, collage-like, but keep getting distracted by other things. I really like them though.

Vessel deconstruction/reconstruction. I learned how to enamel two weeks ago. The enamelled pieces inside were once a pressed copper cup, like the one showing on the left side of the photograph. This is version three. Version four must be done by Friday. Last week, in an effort to explore this venture, I learned that quadruple weave on a 16 harness Macomber loom (two layers of pockets using copper wire) is virtually impossible. I believe there are ways to make it work, but I don't have it in me to fight with the loom and all of its technical glitches. It wins this time.


Sue B said...

Boy it's so funny that you mention that mug. Do you know every day I drink my coffee out of the same mug. I have a cupboard full of mug but always drink out of the handmade one and on the odd occassion when I don't I always feel like something was missing from my day.

Love that vessel!

Dorothy said...

So cool that you've been enjoying handmade artistry every morning for so long.

Those copper pieces would be pretty woven together.

Your vessel is pretty.

Delly Bean said...

Glad you got the yarn so quickly!

Awesome artwork, as always!

Jana said...

Very nice sock yarn. And the weaving, as usual, totally beautiful.