Wednesday, January 31, 2007

New Look...

Yep, I played around a little bit tonight in my hotel in Peterborough. I can't seem to get my new header to go all the way across, so it will have to do as is for now.

Whatta ya think?

Monday, January 29, 2007


Yep, I finally got around to counting how many purses I have hooked and assembled, and it's 17! Even I was amazed.

I finished the final four. Finally. The first pictures are from the first purse I ever hooked -- and one of the last to be finished. It is a Karen Kahle pattern (i.e. motifs) and the finishing methods are all mine. I didn't have any Ultrasuede that "matched"...but I like the look of this sea green colour. It picks up on the greens in the hooking. There is one piece of Ultrasuede that makes up the sides, bottom and strap of the purse...

These next two purses were my "demo" bags at workshops. Way back, after teaching my very first class, I went and finished all of the purses that I had in varying stages of completion to show all of the steps in finishing a purse. A couple of weeks later I was invited to teach another class -- and so I needed to come up with new demos. I settled on just a couple this time, and needed to hook them in a hurry, hence the geometric designs. The top one (blues and browns) has an skinny oval bottom sewn on and the other one is just sewn shut without a bottom (so it's just good for your skinny wallet and a couple of Kleenex ;-) )

In case you're wondering about number four -- it just needed its lining sewn in, so it hardly counts, unless you consider that the lining was sewn together about 2 years ago. Yikes.
I'm off to go and write my speech for Saturday. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Yes, again!

Wow! Two posts in just two days – I must be feeling better ;-)

This last week has been going well. It feels like a New Year. I tidied up my place, organized a bunch of papers, got back into a routine at the gym, and now I’ve started working on some unfinished projects. Some of them have been waiting a long time to be completed.

At the start of last night I had 4 unfinished purses. One of them is the very first purse I hooked. Three of them were used for demonstration purposes in the one-day workshops I was teaching. The hooking is complete on all of them….it is just finishing work that is needed. A lot of finishing work. I worked on two of them last night. I still have 4 unfinished purses.

I am going to dust off my sewing machine tonight and see what I can do… I will try and post some pictures tomorrow.

It is the 50% off sale at Fabricland this weekend. If any of you are in the market for purse supplies, you might want to check it out…they do carry a few different styles of handles, as well as magnetic closures (which were about $5-6 each last time I was there). I am keeping my fingers crossed that all of the notions will be on sale.

Once I finally finish these four purses I have promised myself that I can start on the new one I have planned. I’m not certain of the motifs yet, but I have figured out the basic shape and some of the construction. The planning is so much fun!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

New Catalogue...

Thank you for your patience and understanding –the good news is that I no longer have a sinus infection…and even better, that my productivity has improved substantially ;-)

I have been busy getting my new patterns ready for the printer, and I am pleased to announce that I picked them up on Friday and they are all stapled, folded and ready to go. I spent the rest of the weekend measuring, cutting, serging and drawing 24 patterns and creating a new brochure

Please send me an e-mail if you would like pricing information and/or a jpeg file (about 1MB) with the complete catalogue.

Other good news is that I upgraded my hotmail account yesterday so that I can now work off-line to reply to e-mails. This will (hopefully) help me to be a better correspondent, since I can compose all of my replies and then just go on-line to send and receive. Because I do not have internet access at home, I was only able to manage my e-mail while I was connected at work or the local WIFI café. I spent a couple of hours sifting through my inbox last night and replying to 20+ messages. We’ll see how it goes…but it looks good for now…

I received my new issue of Selvedge magazine last week. I was introduced to this unique British fibre arts magazine by Mary Anne Wise last year at Hooked in the Mountains….but I didn’t see it again until late last Fall when I went to Rochester. I quickly handed over my $20 before I could second-guess my purchase – and it was totally worth it. Unable to find a place that stocks it here (although I have recently discovered that it is available at the Textile Museum in Toronto), and unwilling to pay 70 British pounds for a subscription, I sent them an e-mail to find out where I could buy it in Ontario. A few hours later, I received an e-mail back and was offered the opportunity to pay just $85 US for a year (6 issues) – a considerable savings! Merry Christmas to me! If you are looking for a Valentine’s Day present, treat yourself ;-) I just love this magazine and can't say enough good things about it!

I am finally starting to feel ready for the Upper Toronto Branch Hook-In on February 3rd. If you are in the area, please come – it sounds like it will be a fun day. I will be speaking on purses and also bringing some of my wares.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Happy New Year!

Well, it's not very nice to start off a new year with a bad cold--especially when you are off from work already and had a lot of plans and lists of things you want to get accomplished. ...hopefully the rest of the year is better.

So what have I been doing? Well, aside from spending two whole days (and evenings) reformating and writing up purse patterns--and I'm not finished yet--I started a new knitting project. It is a scarf from a beautiful new book entitled Knitting Nature and I am working on my 6th or 7th hexagon of 15 which get progressively smaller. The wool is some baby Alpaca that I dyed last Friday using several Pro Chem acid dyes. I am satisfied with the results....but I am again reminded how sometimes it is not a good idea to rush when you are not in the mood--instant gratification does not always win in the end. In retrospect I would prefer a little brighter (yes, you heard correctly!) colours...and maybe like to see the hot pink a little more. Take a look...

I am knitting the two skeins together for a more tweedy effect...

I am looking forward to starting a new purse design, but I have promised myself that I will finish up all of the instruction booklets first and get the printing process underway. I am going to visit a couple of friends tomorrow and take pictures of the purses I made for them--somehow the photos were lost during the GHDR (great hard drive replacement) last year. I don't need another reminder of how important it is to do regular back-ups!

In the meantime, I am gazing longingly at these two plaits of Fleece Artist roving I picked up during Boxing week. I am going to incorporate one or both into my next project...yummy!

happy hooking!