October is the time for taking plans into action.
Here in Maryland, it doesn’t feel much like Autumn. Last week, Christopher and I went to Dumbarton Oaks Garden in DC and it was 93 degrees, much too warm for me. We walked around, charmed and interested, but SWEATY, so sweaty. I had been hoping to see some autumnal color for inspiration but I came away with different ideas about colors and textures anyway. [I discovered the Trifoliate Orange, otherwise known as a Flying Dragon Bitter Orange, with amazing corkscrew, thorny branches and downy fruit, a real delight!]
That’s how this whole month has been so far, honestly – not getting what I want, necessarily, but in some cases getting what I can use. It keeps me on my toes, at any rate. And I need to keep on my toes, as we head into the season of putting plans into action – taking all my ideas about what I want to create, where I want to sell, how I want to shape this holiday season and manifesting them into being.
A glimpse into my process of making plans into actions.
I don’t usually share my journal processes much – not because they’re secret [though you might glimpse some previously undisclosed ideas in the photo above] but because it’s just something I haven’t thought much about sharing until I started using a Travelers Notebook to write out plans on the go.
On these pages I’ve got some breakdowns on how I want to overhaul various aspects of my business and my focus, as well as ideas for refining some of my offerings and generally being more effective. I’m as visual of a thinker as you’d expect, so using boxes and sections to organize my thoughtflow is very helpful for me.
I also have a page that’s just all future ideas for products, blog posts, and teaching. One of my ideas that came to life from journaling out thoughts is the crochet covered malachite stone you see here, made for a LiveStream for the FiberyGoodness folks.
This crochet covered stone was a demo I did to show how you can add objects to a vessel that aren’t easily woven or spun into your yarn. I freeformed the lace! It was so fun and quite easy to accomplish. I used my handspun singles to great effect here. I know that not everyone feels comfortable with freeform crochet, so I found a link to a page that gives you a tutorial for this from The WHOot, if you want to try, too.
You can use stones you have already, or get one of those packages of smooth stones to go into a large vase, from most craft stores. It works great around lots of different objects!
Plans morph into action.
My work as the FiberyGoodness Artist in Residence has really focused around the Elements – how they inform my work, and how I use my connections with them to manifest color, texture, and finished objects as both art and ritual. It’s only natural that as I’ve explored my concepts, I’ve settled on specific colors and feelings for each element.
In looking for new items to carry in the shop, that led me to offer my newest set of colorways – Elemental.
Each element – Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Spirit – has been translated into spinnable fiber through colors and textures that represent the elements. This is one of my favorite things to do as a fiber artist, and I think that these battlets are some of the best and most interesting that I’ll make. Like so many of my “inspired” limited offerings, I leave them shrouded in a little mystery until you receive them – no photos of the fiber, just descriptions and inspiration photos. I know this isn’t to everyone’s cup of tea, to put their trust in me and my artistic eye to make something that they’ll love. But I have been thrilled by the positive response from those who have tried out my artistry!
Here’s what one of my GALAXIES battlet sets look like next to their inspirational nebula photo.
Inside the battlets are tiny white neps that look like the stars in the cosmic field! Trying to get the energy of the gases and light is all a fun part of the challenge.
I also like designing the colorways so that each one will work well with the others in that set. For GALAXIES, that was pretty easy – the colors in the Hubble photos all show how nicely each galaxy goes with the rest of the Universe, ha!
With Elemental, I think some striking effects could be achieved by playing different colorways against each other. Earth and Fire, Water and Air, Water and Fire… Spirit with all of them… honestly, they all are meant to go together, just like all the building blocks of creation do. And I suspect that you can create some pretty epic things with this fiber!
Making never stops.
Besides the Elemental battlets, I’ve been making more Arcanity necklaces, and I have some fancy new styles coming soon. By the way, if you see a style that’s sold out, chances are pretty good that I can replicate it or customize the look. I’ve been kicking around some cool ideas that I should be debuting soon. [or if you’re local, you can always come by one of my vending appearances and see them in person!]
I have a bunch of new yarns listing soon, and some supported spindles in my “superball” style too. New podlets and tiny tapestries will be updated as well – and keep an eye out for a coming soon new addition, Retro Style crocheted shawls, scarves, and lapighans [lap afghans], all made my my mom!
Speaking of new, did you happen to catch the newest spinning awesomeness from SpinOlution? There’s a new spinning wheel, the Bullfrog, and a highly adjustable spinning chair that matches the SpinOlution style.
So… how do you prep for the holidays? Are you rushing to get ready to sell at craft shows? Are you busy making lovely holiday gifts for family and friends? Do you wait until the last minute? I’d love to hear all about your pre-holiday preparation plans – hit comment and tell me all about it!