Saturday, February 27, 2010

The lights are back on

Hello, friends. We're getting back to normal after a humdinger Nor'easter here in New Hampshire on Thursday night. There were 91 mph winds recorded and power outages were (and still are, today) widespread across our tiny state. Our seacoast was really battered. We're feeling lucking that we only lost our electricty for a while (it came back on this morning) and have some downed limbs in the back yard.

So we made the best of things by hunkering down in our family room with books and a toasty fire in the fireplace. Andrew read about 200 pages of Harry Potter & Nathan took notes about tropical fishkeeping from several library books. My hubby planned out our trip to the Grand Canyon. I read a lot of "My Life In France" by Julia Child and also toyed with some crocheted lace edgings. It was too cold upstairs to weave while the power was out, so I had to be happy with my crochet hook.

Here are some pictures of some of my samples:

I put in a row of buttonholes, which I thought could also serves as holes through which ribbon could be threaded. Nice on a garter, don't you think? (Or, it could even be a toss garter on its own -- this will take some pattern tinkering).

Here is a shell edging, which my husband liked the best:

And here is another edging, which would also work on a garter:

Things were busy with Nutfield last week (4 sales on Thursday to 3 different buyers), and I'm hopeful that this week will be exciting, too. Let's just hope that the worst of the weather is behind us so that I can use my sewing machine and iron!
Be well, Kate :)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Now & then

Hello, friends. Happy Tuesday.

I had a "milestone" sale this morning, to a lovely customer in Australia. It got me thinking about my early weaving days and how my work has changed over the years.

Here is a picture of my very first weaving project (not counting the potholders I made as a little girl). This lovely sampler was made at Forma Loom Company, Whitmore Lake, Michigan on a 4 shaft LeClerc loom. Stunning, isnt' it?

And here is what is going off to Australia.

It is always fun to look back!

Here is what is on the loom today -- these will be kitchen towels in chocolate brown/natural with a bold plaid border design.

Be well, Kate

Monday, February 22, 2010

Some beaded scarves

Hello, friends. Happy Monday. It is sunny here, and my boys are home from school this week for a February break. We have lots of fun -- albeit low-key -- activities planned. I guess a trip to the orthodontist cannot be viewed as an activity. Sigh...

Here is a picture of a rayon ric rac boucle scarf that I made for a friend's sister. It is made from a soft ivory yarn in plain weave. There are 4 different kinds of glass beads threaded on the fringe bunches, which are then twisted together using my handy dandy LeClerc fringe twister (one of my favorite things). The boucle has a nice drape to it. I really like it for scarves because it is warm but not itchy or heavy.

The loom is being warped this week - as time allows - for some new towels in a chocolate brown bold plaid (a customer request!). I made some table napkins from this same fabric earlier in the month and they are really working out nicely. (I figure that having my two boys use my napkins at mealtimes is a pretty good test of quality assurance).

Be well, Kate :)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A sunny day

Hello, friends. After an unfortunate event between our front door and my right index finger yesterday, I am getting back on track with my weaving and other activities. I highly dislike being slowed down, but it did give me a chance to study some of the music the we're doing with the NH Phil. The Barber piece, "Knoxville: Summer of 1915" is challenging but very lovely. It almost has a lullaby quality about it, which makes it difficult to concentrate on after 7:30 at night!

Here is a picture of some more tea towels that are on the loom today. I've woven a run that include several of the popular colors that I've done this winter (i.e. robins egg blue & spring green/sage), but I'm trying some new ones as well. I've got one each of a berry/purple-red and a gold/mustard. Here is a picture of the gold one. It reminds me of the colors of our kitchen in my childhood home in Boston, New York (the OTHER Boston...). Here is a peek:

We have our gym night tonight so I have some chicken and black beans ready for the crockpot. I would be lost without my crockpot. Julia Child probably never used a crockpot, but then again, she didn't have 2 boys to feed on top of a husband!
Be well, Kate :)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A snowy day

Hello, friends. The boys are home today (Tuesday) as are most other New Hampshire school children since we have 8-9" of snow forecasted for this afternoon and early evening. I walked our pooch this morning, and it was pleasantly quiet.

I was pleased that the item I donated to the Etsy Wedding Team Haiti Relief shop sold this weekend. I have relisted the item, too. The towel is on its way to Virginia. The bright orange and robins egg blue seems to be a color combination that resonates with lots of folks -- it is rather cheery!

I have a nice, long warp (10 yards) on the loom for more towels. I don't anticipate getting much weaving done today, given the fact that I have company in the house (which is really nice, actually), but the loom will not be going anyplace anytime very soon.

The State of New Hampshire got fifteen of my hard-earned dollars so that I can register as a Limited Liability Corporation here. I am pretty certain that "Nutfield Weaver" has not been taken as a name by anyone else around, but it will be nice to secure that, nonetheless.

I keep toying with the best way to photograph my herb garden textiles. Photographing plaids/stripes is a bit tricky. Anyway, here is an attempt, and if you have any suggestions for improving the shot/composition, by all means, send me your ideas!

Be well, Kate

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Herb garden themed kitchen textiles

Hello, friends. Hope you are staying warm! It is chilly here (it is February) but the skies are clear.

Work on some new textiles is proceeding well. Here is a picture of some new fabric (you saw the warp threads yesterday). I like the way that the colors are intersecting with each other. I'm still working out a few dimensions while the fabric is on the loom (so that the fabric is balanced), but I think that I'll have a couple of table napkins and tea towels with this warp. What do you think? The purple may be a bit too dark -- I may have to break down and get that dusty lavender that I've been eyeing from my supplier.

Next up: a run of apple blossom textiles or maybe some lace in willow green. Let me know what you think of the colors used in the herb garden textiles!
Be well, Kate

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Herb garden tea towel warp

Hello, friends. Are you knee-deep in snow? We have another snowy day here but flakes don't make quite the headlines here as they do in say, Virginia or points south. We're pretty used to it.

I celebrated my 90th sale yesterday, and my 93rd sale just before lunch; both transactions were to repeat customers, which is highly gratifying.

So I have a new warp ready for some herb garden-y colored kitchen linens. Here is a snapshot:

I have a few more ideas for different colorways but weaving only goes so fast.
Off to the loom for now. Table napkins today!
Be well, Kate

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Nutfield Weaver's freebie greeting card

Hello, friends. Between weaving 2 scarves yesterday and working out at the gym last night, I am resting my arms a bit this morning. Four or five hours of weaving really amounts to some work!

Here is a picture I have for a "freebie" that is given to each person who selects an item from my Etsy shop. I really hate to throw away my handwoven lace -- even a couple of inches of it -- and so found a way to make something new from my scraps. They are really fun to make, and an affordable way to market your shop. I'm thinking about getting a second punch to make a different shape -- maybe a nice bird silhouette. I like birds.

I'm warping my loom today for some chocolate brown and cream colored tea towels in a bold plaid twill. And I will be taking my pooch for a walk today, of course. My boys will be interested in "American Idol" tonight. I think I may pass on this and will practice the Brahams IVth symphony instead!

Be well, Kate

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Tea towel mania

Hello, friends and happy Thursday. I am making a dent in my backlog and have just cut off a run of tea towels this afternoon. They turned out pretty well. I love the feel of the fabric after it has been washed and dried for the first time.

Here is a picture of some of the colors I am considering for a run of "herb garden" themed kitchenwares. I am resisting the temptation to buy more yarn. At least I'm TRYING to resist the temptation. There are just way too many yummy colors out there.

My Dad will be pleased to know that I am working hard at keeping my Excel spreadsheets current, which he was kind enough to set up for me in October of 2009. I am doing my best to conquer my Excel-phobia. It is nicer to learn when you actually start to come out slightly ahead in the dollars & cents category.

Be well, everyone. Kate :)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Inspired by color

Hello, friends. I've been working away at the loom this week and have slowly accumulated an assortment of weaving cottons on my windowsill. They have proven to be a nice source of inspiration for new projects. Aren't these colors the best? It is hard to have a favorite:

I've been weaving with two new colors today, a eucalyptus green and a nice beige. I think I'll call the beige towel "Cafe au Lait" or "Chai" or some such thing.

Off to the dentist!

Be well, Kate :)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Spring colors

Hello, friends. I have to say that I have the world's nicest people for clients. I often read about impossibly hard-to-please customers on the Etsy Forums/discussion pages, but I have encountered nothing of the sort in my little shop! Everyone with whom I have dealt has been pleasant & friendly.

Spring colors are definitely popular this winter! I am currently sold out of tea towels in robins egg blue, but have plans for more as soon as I catch up on custom requests. This green is simply yummy, don't you think? I have just one of these left.

I have plans for a new fabric that will be "herb garden" themed. My yarn stash and our gardening books are wonderful sources of inspiration!

Our seeds for our vegetable and flower gardens were ordered this week.
Can you tell that I am anxious for spring???
Be well, Kate