An Open Letter

An Open Letter to Those who Don’t Get the Fiber Arts

I am not doing this to recreate the past.  I don’t harbour any fantasies of wearing petticoats or a bonnet.   And I don’t knit because I want to feel domestic.

I do this to free my soul.  I do this to work in colours that make my heart sing.   I dye because I see in my mind hues and shades that are bursting to be let out.  And so I do let them out, laying them down in dye upon fiber – vibrant shades poured out over wool, over silk, over the ordinary of life.

SpaceCadet Yarn 2

And when, at last, I cast those colours onto my needles, I feel a calm wash over me as I work them up into a fabric of my own making — the needles clicking softly and the colours gently blending and contrasting.

I know you think this is old-fashioned, but it’s not.  It is as modern as imagination, as current as discovery, as now as creativity.  Would you ask a painter why he doesn’t just take a photograph?

And it’s ok if you don’t get it.  I understand.  But I just wanted to say – I just wanted to say out loud – that this is nothing about old fashioned.  This is what I do, and I do it now.  I am a fiber artist.

SpaceCadet Yarn 1



I had plans for this week — I had great plans — but here it is, Friday already, and as I look back, I realise the week has got the better of me.  I seem to have spent most of this week rushing… scrambling…  really struggling to get things done.  And the harder I’ve pushed, somehow the less I’ve seemed to get done.  It’s been very frustrating!

And even though I’ve felt like I don’t know why this week was so unproductive, the truth is, I do.  Somehow, ever since the holidays, I have lost my rhythm — dyeing on the wrong days, blogging on the wrong days, working far too late into the night and then struggling to catch up the next day.  Trying to mould my days around me, and ending up totally out of sync instead.

That is not my 2011.  My 2011 is going to be calm, ordered, organised, productive, and purposeful.   And so I am going to get my rhythm back.  I am going to stop, rework the schedule, and get back on top of things.

I had a really good blog post planned for tonight but, though I scrambled through today with all my might, I never managed to get the photos taken for it.  And as I sat here last night trying to think of a work around for that, or even a whole ‘nother blog post — squeezing my brain for ideas like an orange for juice — I suddenly realised that I was doing (again) what I’ve been doing every day since the holidays.  But what I’ve been doing hasn’t been working, and I decided to stop.

So, I have no blog post for you today.  Instead, I am going to spend the day working very hard on slowing down.  I’m going to take things at a sensible pace, focus on the calm, and try find my rhythm again.  And maybe, by not trying so darned hard to get everything done in a big rush, I will manage to get most things done — with a bit more success.

I’ll start with a nice cup of tea.  It’s the best way to start any endeavor of calm, don’t you agree?  And then I’ll start off into 2011 afresh — and this time, I’ll just put one foot in front of the other.


Shop Update: From Flat on My Back

You may have noticed that there was no shop update on Monday, as there usually is.  Nor on Tuesday, which is when I usually do the update if Monday gets too busy.  There were yarns ready — drying, or in the process of being reskeined, some weighed, some tagged…  But I was not ready.

I was flat on my back in agony and holding as still as I possibly could.  Over the weekend, my neck and shoulder had seized up completely and, man oh man it hurt!  I mean, they’ve seized up before, a few times in my life, but never like this.  Imagine, if you will, me lying on my back in bed, with no pillow, nothing to contort my spine away from the support of the mattress, and I moved my foot — just my foot! — and it sent a spasm of pain shooting up through my shoulder and my neck and wrapped right around over my skull all the way to my eyes.  That kind of agony.

Stella yarn in Faded Garland

The doctor is satisfied that it is muscular and not skeletal (I was worried), and I now have some painkillers the size of horse-pills that are working a small miracle.  Bit by bit, I am gaining more mobility — and having to remind myself not to rush it, that everything can wait…  even though I am desperate to get back work.  There were so many exciting things happening this week, and so many wonderful yarns!

Celeste Yarn in Stewed Cranberry

And so keen was I to get them in the shop that I took advantage of those pills and pushed myself a bit too hard yesterday.  The result is that there are now some lovely yarns in the shop    …and, I am flat on my back again today.  Not anything like before, but just a little reminder from my muscles they are not to be trifled with and I must respect them and take things slooooowly.

Luna Laceweight Yarn in Rapeseed

But I did get some really exiting stuff into the shop…  There’s enough Megan’s Frost to make a sweater — with two more skeins of Frost waiting to go into the shop as soon as I’m able.   And there’s four skeins of Stewed Cranberry, with two more in the studio ready to be reskeined.  A beautiful skein of Laceweight in the most amazing golden-yellow.  And a skein of Stella in a lovely, quirky colourway called Faded Garland.  Enjoy!

And please keep your fingers crossed for me, ok?

Celeste Yarn in Megan's Frost