Tuesday, February 28, 2012

arriving in the new world

i've been thinking a lot about emma lousia. my great-great-grandmother who left her wealthy british home in yorkshire, married an irish soldier, and eventually moved to lancelot, ontario - dirt poor farmland.
this is my first piece for emma louisa. i plan on doing more.

i dyed a beautiful piece of linen that robyn sent to me a few weeks ago - dyed it a good solid victorian colour. and added crochet lace that i purchased on etsy and then worked it with embroidery and vintage ric-rac and beads. all from her old world. the restrictions and the comfort of those restrictions. and the crow - the world she ended up in. the cold lonely sound of a single crow. against a clear blue sky, a rocky landscape.

Monday, February 27, 2012

in all that chaos

i've spent the entire weekend painting the spare (soon to be yoga/meditation) room. everything is out of place and the whole house seems to be in chaos. this morning i walked into the room ready to tackle the finishing touches. and saw the early morning light on the newly painted wall. the beautiful, hopeful end of winter light. already this room is giving me a sense of peace.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

newfoundlander at heart

a few weeks ago i had the privilege of being asked by by margot at newfoundlander at heart to be a guest blogger. here is the interview.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

pretending it isn't happening

we're experiencing one of the biggest storms of the winter today. i'm pretending it isn't happening. it's fairly mild so abigail and i got out for our morning walk in spite of the blizzard. i did a little dyeing and got the pots back inside before they completely filled up with snow.

and i'm continuing my house "fresh-up". re-organizing the spare bedroom by pushing the bed to the wall and turning it into my yoga/meditation room. and giving it a new serene colour.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

emily carr sees green

in my mind, some artists will always be associated with certain colours. rembrant brown. van gogh yellow (sunflowers) and ultramarine blue (cafe sky). matisse cobalt (his cut-out jazz figures). and emily carr green.
our little book club just finished reading (and discussing) susan vreeland's "the forest lover". it was wonderful getting back into emily carr's world. in my youth i read all her books. during her lifetime she was known at least as well for her writing as she was for her painting. after reading the "forest lover" i went back to "growing pains" (her most complete autobiography) to hear her voice again.

i'll be adding "the forest lover" to my etsy shop later today.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

what's pleasing me now

i've been feeling a little flat lately. that usually happens after a period of extreme activity. when all i want is for things to slow down and let me take a breath. and when they do...
this week i had a healing touch session with a good friend. this always helps. she described my state as being in stasis - like the crest of a wave.
so i've been enjoying this crest.
i've been enjoying the lengthening days and the sunlight pouring into the kitchen in the late afternoon.

the spring flowers i've been buying at the grocery store.

painting the hall.

and this box that arrived late last week from robyn full of inspirational reading and wonderful old textiles. i finished off a little textile piece and have begun another.
i'm enjoying this crest.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

the sea, the sky

this time of year i stop going down to the cabin. i prefer comfort. but keith manages to spend time there almost every weekend. he doesn't mind the slide down the 70 snow covered steps. or sitting in the sub zero cabin waiting for it to warm up. and this is his reward...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

soft pink

happy valentine's day my lovelies.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

emma louisa

a couple of weeks ago i was contacted by a 2nd cousin who is doing a geneology of my father's side of the family.
growing up we didn't have much to do with them. my parents tended to isolate themselves. there were 10 siblings in the family so there are many cousins that i don't know. lee has been filling me in. yesterday she sent me information about my great-great-grandparents. they were the ones that came to canada in the 1870's. originally from ireland, to scotland and then to britain, john hagan was in the british army. he married emma louisa sootheran. it turns out that emma was gentry. wealthy land owners in yorkshire. descendents still own some of the land and some of it now houses
ampleforth college
what i love about this story is that she left her home, her family, her wealth, and married for love. and then left for canada. and settled in lancelot, ontario near huntsville - a tiny, rocky farming community. this story is so jane austen. so bronte. i love that i'm related to her...

Thursday, February 9, 2012

in the woods

every winter i teach 1 course in the theatre dept. at the university here in corner brook. kind of an art fundamentals course to 3rd year stage craft students. the classes are always small (4 students this year). the course is always changing.
two weeks ago (while i was in orlando), barb hunt stepped in and presented a lecture on the history of knitting and taught them to knit. one class, on snowshoes, we went up to 3 bear mountain and they each selected a tree to yarn bomb.

danielle's tree was wounded - torn and cut. she turned it into a "candy tree" to make it happy.

ashley was all about comfort. wrapping in warmth and filling in the gaps.
luke wanted to encourage the life energy back into his birch tree. and figured out how to knit these pretty complicated and realistic birch leaves (not bad for a beginning knitter).

and sarah, who chose an insignificant little alder shrub at the edge of the hill, envoked it's potential as a large, wise weeping willow.

we'll be leaving this intallation up for the rest of the term. so if you live in the corner brook area, put on your snowshoes and see if you can find them. (hint: they're at the beginning of the path to your left and on the first loop of the trail.)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

and home again

2012 is proving to be one giddy roller-coaster ride. i just get my bags unpacked, my feet on the ground and i'm off again. (yes - those all professionally polished shoes. finally. )
i just love shoemakers and shoeshine guys...
we set up our booth displays on friday - again thank-you government of newfoundland and labrador for all your support.

every time i leave the province on a craft related activitity i realize again how lucky we are for the help that we get - not all provinces are as generous to their craftspeople...
on saturday evening we had a reception and an award ceremony and our lovely anne manuel (the captain of the craft council) was awarded for all her incredible work for craftspeople in the province. we always tell her how wonderful she is but now it's nice that everyone knows.

halifax was not orlando.

and the 2012 show was not the 2011 show. far viewer buyers although the orders were more substantial in many cases. so although i didn't get as many orders as i'd hoped, i have a few new shops. and enough work to keep me busy now well into the summer. and that's what it's all about...

Thursday, February 2, 2012

packing my bags again

for retail crafts producers, the fall is the busiest time (in preparation for all the christmas craft fairs). for those involved in wholesale, it's early in the new year. i made the switch to wholesale a year ago so i'm still adjusting to this new rhythm. winter is a tricky time to be travelling out of newfoundland. but today, as i pack my bags to head off for halifax, it's clear blue skies. i'll be attending the atlantic craft trade show, a 3 day event that will take place this weekend. hope to see a lot of you there.