Feather

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Consider the feather. When I think of creation, nature, biology, I consider the feather. Each one so very dependent on the one next to it. Each one with its own part to play in flight or famine. Some feathers determine just which direction to go and which speed to travel, like surrogate counselors with you at every moment. At first glance they look similar but upon closer investigation you see that each is as individual as a fingerprint. Each varied in design, size, color and role. How incredible that the straight fibers that make up the feather can have such defined markings as spots and stripes and other patterns. Feathers. Amazing. Nature is amazing, as is the world.

All this because I picked up a feather.

Grashus

(C) Larissa Brown

(C) Larissa Brown

That up there is Grashus. A new pattern by Larissa Brown. She is currently wrapping up a book, Beautiful Wreck: A Viking Love Story. In conjunction with the book she has released a series of patterns that are themed with the book. This one is Grashus, Icelandic for grass house. Larissa asked me to test the pattern for her and knit the sample you see above.

It was a delight to knit this project. It is always easier when helping a friend. It did take a bit longer than I anticipated. The bottom part is done in double-garter. This was a new technique for me. I found that it wasn’t one that you could speed through. It took quite a bit of paying attention, hence the slowness. The stitch is intricate enough that you can’t really make a mistake. Partly because they are hard to hide and partly because it is relatively difficult to rip out. Although, after a good three feet I ended up learning a few tricks of the double-garter. Here is a link to the pattern.

NaBloPoMo? Ok!

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So, I have been stuck in a pretty sizable rut lately. The way I am going to get unstuck- NaBloPoMo. It is National Blog Posting month. I have officially committed to posting everyday for 30 days. I think I can do it. This post is coming from my phone so I don’t really have any excuses.

Whether you are an old follower or new, I hope you will join me on the journey. Heck, I may even update the Rainmomma store too!

Be well. Create. Inspire.

Mondays of Making

Gira3

This is a new segment called Mondays of Making or MOM. There is always something happening with these hands of mine. It will highlight either a work in progress or a recently completed project (like todays). I will also talk about successes and failures or any issues that may have come up with each project.

Today focus will be about my third Girasole by Jared Flood. You can see the project page here. I really love this pattern. I love that it offers different enough patterns to keep me engaged and excited about the project. The hardest part for me is the edging. Oh, the edging. The shawl has been done for approximately a year, all it needed was the edging. But, the edging alone takes about 6-8 hours depending on speed. So, knowing that I had a retreat coming up I knew this was going to be my opportunity to just ‘get ‘er done.’ Even still, I had about an hours worth of work when I got home. But, at long last, it is done. People often ask about blocking. I has blocked all three the same. First I soak it about 15 minutes then I put down a sheet in the middle of my living room. When I pin it the pin goes directly into the carpet and I pin each and every point. A little over 200. For those that have hardwood this can also be done on your bed, preferably in a spare room where it can be left overnight. I typically turn on the ceiling fan overnight to help with air flow.

After blocking the shawl is an instant fave! I am so happy with my choice of yarn. It is Cascade Yarns Heritage. It is so light and has a beautiful drape to it.

Next Monday: Aviendha Update

Be well. Create. Inspire.

TGIF

printmakingThis is a new regular post inspired by Elizabeth Duvivier of Squam Art Workshops.

One may think, Thank God It’s Friday. And, indeed, Fridays are always fabulous for the M-F worker bee. But, this is a new spin on TGIF, Thank God I am Fantastic! The idea is to share, aloud, what is making you fantastic or fabulous RIGHT NOW! What are you making, doing, seeing, that is rocking your world? I invite you to share in the comments section.

For me, I am grateful for what printmaking has done for me. I was not an art form that I thought I would continue. But, it is very much alive for me now. It has allowed me the wonderful opportunity of being published. Not just once, several times over. And for that I nothing but the deepest gratitude. I have done a lot of reflection about why. Why has printmaking surfaced for me? I think that it is somehow taking me back to my roots. I was originally a visual artist and have been tied up being a fiber artist for a long time. It was simply evolution and maturity that has allowed them to coexist. Now, I am working on finding a way for them to coexist a little more peacefully.

Be well. Create. Inspire.

Finito

Quad

Here are some of the projects that have been on my plate. The first is the Boardwalk vest by Heidi Kirrmaier. I recently joined with Knit Purl in downtown Portland to work making some samples for them. This was this first, but the process was such a breeze I am already working on a second. In the second picture you can see the WIP for Aviendha by Melanie Berg, the next sample for Knit Purl. This one is a very basic knit, done completely in garter stitch with an easy decrease pattern.

Recently I did some work with Larissa Brown, a local knitwear designer and author. The first (#3) was a new pattern for her titled Pterodactyl. You can read about it on her blog here and here. It was with Malabrigo worsted which is such a wonderful yarn to work with. Soft and squishy, perfect. The next project was also with Larissa, I can give little details as it will be published in the fall. When it is released I will endeavor to put it up here for all to see. The picture above (#4) is the yarn involved, Madelinetosh Prairie.

There is definitely more in the works.

Be well. Create. Inspire.

Inspiration Deck Swap #1

Newtown

“The darker the night, the brighter the stars. The deeper the grief, the closer to God.”

I first discovered Jessica Brogan while we were both doing a workshop with Susannah Conway entitled Exploring the Senses. (Which I highly recommend!) And, when you are a part of classes/programs like this there is typically a blogroll. I always peruse them for new and inspiring people to follow. Enter: Jessica. She continues to inspire me with her artwork, and words, and aunthenticity. After the Exploring the Senses program I also joined her Artist’s Way Group.

On her blog I saw this post about doing an Inspiration Deck Swap. It sounded SO cool. I whole deck of inspirational sayings to keep on hand when you need a boost. And made by creative folk. But, I missed the cutoff. I knew I wouldn’t miss it next time. Well, next time came sooner that we thought. December 14 there was a tragic shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. Many people were trying to find was to get involved, from a distance. That is when Jessica proposed doing a Deck Swap for the Sandy Hook Families. I immediately jumped on board. The image aboe it the result. As you can see, made in a very RainMomma style.

I am currently finishing up another batch for another Inspirational Deck swap with Jessica. This one involves 52 cards and 4 different sayings. It is harder than it sounds. So stay tuned.

Be well. Create. Inspire.

St. Francis

The Cimabue Francis by Michelle Kroll (C)2013

The Cimabue Francis by Michelle Kroll (C)2013

I had been trying to think of a way that I could combine my work and my (current) pleasure. The print at the right is the outcome. The Cimabue Francis print was made because the Franciscan Spiritual Center (my day job), was looking for something to use for an appeal. As I am involved with the project at work as well I thought I would offer up a print. The result you see here. It has been very well received. Francis is a well-loved saint. If you would like to purchase a print of your own you can get one here.

The inspiration continues to flow. Keep watching.
Coming soon- Why Printmaking?

Be well. Create. Inspire.