Baba’s Current StringThings

Here is what I have been working on this week…

Here is a quick round up of what I’ve got on the go this week…

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A Pretty Peacock Blanket for Miss.B.
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Blocking a new piece of thread crochet, a pattern-free mandala or doily.

Continue reading “Baba’s Current StringThings”

Visible Mending: The Beauty Of Broken Things

It’s been a hell of a overcomsumption party, but the fun is over and the guests are puking in the bushes outside. It’s time to relearn the wisdom of Making Do and Mending.

The Japanese have a really beautiful set of aesthetic traditions that, to me, are the exact opposite of the frantic, febrile spasm of over consumerism that the world seems to be caught up in. We are literally consuming ourselves to death.

One of the most beautiful and healing of these concepts is wabi sabi.

Wikipedi says, “Wabi-sabi represents Japanese aesthetics and a Japanese world view  centered on the acceptance of transience and imperfection. The aesthetic is sometimes described as one of beauty that is “imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete”.

“the wabi-sabi aesthetic include asymmetry,  asperity (roughness or irregularity), simplicity, economy, austerity, modesty, intimacy.” (Wikipedia)

Those are such beautiful concepts. There is a coolness, serenity, naturalness and acceptance that feels like the exact opposite of anxiety in these concepts. Now I am no expert at all, but I think I really get this right down to my bones. These are my guiding principals as a craftswoman. Continue reading “Visible Mending: The Beauty Of Broken Things”

O Crochet Sai a Rua Yarnbombing

Clearly the product of a crochet craftavist’s happiest hallucination about a trip to an alternate crochet circus universe. Wow.

Without a doubt this is the most fantastical excursion into a surreal crocheted reality ever. I think my favourite part might be the lovely lace parasols of the stilt walkers. Or maybe the woman filling her crochet grocery cart with crochet food. What a fantabulous yarn bombing. A must watch.

A lovely little yarnbombing video that’s relaxing and enjoyable to watch. Take a few minutes to breathe and enjoy! The stilt walker’s umbrellas are my favorite. See photos on Facebook

via O Crochet Sai a Rua Yarnbombing —

Crocheting My Hyperbolic Coral Reef

I was immediately caught up in the wonder of the intersection between non-Euclidean geometry, feminism, crochet, and environmentalism, and I set out to make my own Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Garden.

I have a crochet coral reef in my living room.

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A Few Corals

My Coral reef is full of tiny sea creatures, mostly sea turtles, octopuses, and snails, because I find them the most fun to crochet.

When kids come to visit, I like having something completely indestructible for them to play with. It’s extra fun when they find a tiny albino sea turtle hiding inside a sea-weedy coral. Very often, a guest will pick up a coral to play with and sometimes I send the coral home with them. Everyone should have an encounter with a coral garden I feel.

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Michelle’s Tokyo Show!

Michelle is my extremely talented twin from another mother. Look what she’s doing!

Michelle is my extremely talented twin from another mother. She lives and makes beautiful art in Tokyo. (Almost literally twins, we share the same birthday and in fact are both turning 50 this month.)  Look what she’s doing on her birthday!

I am so proud of her. Click through to take a peek at the three pieces she will be displaying. They are incredible.

Mazal Tov Michelle!

 

Three of my drawings will be in Zen at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum in Ueno park from August 22-29, 2016. After the Abstract Narrative group show at the Artcomplex Center of Tokyo, I was contacted by someone who saw my work and wanted to know if I would participate in a large group show…

via NEWS: The Zen Show — Viewed from the Outside

Does Anyone Else Rescue Abandoned Craft Projects?

Finding a half finished and abandoned craft project always makes me so sad…

Finding a half finished and abandoned craft project always makes me so sad…

I always wonder what happened? Did the crafter just get bored? Or did someone’s mother  get old, and in the process of sorting their stuff out, a son or daughter decided to donate a half completed project?

I always feel that there is a tragedy there.

Continue reading “Does Anyone Else Rescue Abandoned Craft Projects?”

Finding Treasures

S0, as you Winnipegger’s may know, Wolsley’s Neighbourhood Bookstore and Cafe is closed (temporarily I am POSITIVE). I encourage action!

Anyway, I just read this wonderful post about finding fibre-love treasure in second-hand bookstores ad thought to share it with you.

Two of the best finds I ever made at the cafe were ‘Plain and Fancy: American Women and Their Needlework, 1700-1850’ by Susan Burrows Swan (found last week!) and the ‘Woman’s Day Book of American Needlework’, by Rose Wilder Lane. (Yes, Laura’s daughter!) It still had it’s companion box of patterns too!

Have you made any amazing finds second-hand?

A good second-hand book store is a pearl beyond price.:-)

The Sweaty Knitter, Weaver and Devotee of Other Fiber Arts

I enjoy roaming the aisles of used book stores.  Over the years I have found some amazing HandweaversWorkbookbooks for very little money.  Recently I came across a 1956 edition of A Handweaver’s Workbook by Heather G. Thorpe (originally published 1936, reissued in 1974).  Not surprising given its age, the book is hardbound, and the pages are printed on heavy acid-free pages. It is also in perfect condition, nary a pencil mark! What a find!

Browsing through it, I was impressed by its thorough yet not overwhelming approach to introducing weaving.  I learned some interesting facts I’ve not seen newer weaving survey books or learned in a weaving class.

Did you know (I didn’t!) that …

PorteeCrossThere are different names for crosses on warps made withe a paddle dependent upon their position:  The first cross at the end of a warp is called a porrey cross; the second cross is called…

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Chatelaines: The Original Multi-App Mobile Device!

My Chatelaine isn’t as pretty as the Victorian ones, but it’s just as handy.

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What Do You Call Your Arts And/Or Craftsy Self?

In praise of all of the Craftivists, Textile Artists, Crafters, Embroideresses, Spinsters, and Needleworkers…

Image above is Alter Image by Alanna Tyson Her post on Art vs Craft is well worth reading

I am a craftswoman, not an artist. I am a Craftivist  too. Let me tell you why…

The Personal Is Political

Words can be unexpectedly powerful. The difference between a craftswoman, needleworker, crocheter, fibre or textile artist, and artisan, etc., may be only a matter of terminology, but what you call yourself  makes a real difference in both self and public perception.

As always, the personal is political.

Continue reading “What Do You Call Your Arts And/Or Craftsy Self?”

Pin Looms: Making Weaving Portable

I blistered my fingers pin-loom weaving but it was hella fun!

Pin Loom Weaving Class

Yesterday I went to a fun class at Wolsley Wool, my local independent yarn store. Kari taught us how to weave on a pin loom. I had flirted with the idea of doing pin loom weaving before, and the Schacht Zoom Loom is exactly the kind of small loom that tempts me the most, but I could never justify the cost and I never ran into a second-hand one.

So when I saw a workshop offered, including a handmade pin loom, taught by the delightful Kari, I jumped at it.

Four Inch Pin Loom Class
Four Inch Pin Loom Class: My Brand New Toy!

Continue reading “Pin Looms: Making Weaving Portable”