Monday, June 14, 2010

Art or Not Art: Yarns by Design

I get so frustrated by people who think all Art is strictly painting or sculpture. Art is the combination of a creative state of mind and the passion behind whatever medium is being used. In my case it is fiber. An example of this is everything involved in designing a yarn. I quite often start with an overall concept or story or inspiration, sometimes based on the genius of another artist. Most recently I've used whatever is the monthly theme for the latest Phatfiber box. The June 2010 box has "A Midsummer Night's Dream" theme. I love fairies and decided to use the fairies from the Shakespeare play as my inspiration. Next I saw this lovely fluffy wool with little nubby bits that reminded me of cobwebs. Cobweb is the name of one of the fairies in the play. What else should I throw into the mix? How about some black mohair for a halo effect and some Aurora Angelina for that irridescent luminous magic that belongs to fairies. The next thing to be added is some white alpaca for that oh-so-soft and luxurious feel. I can just see all of this blended together and spun into a lace weight yarn for an airy cobwebby lacy shawl. How can this not be art?
Next thing is to take some of this Cobweb blend of fibers and add some lustrous light blue silk and some of my pale blue meriboo (a combination of merino wool and bamboo) fibers to get the feel of a Luna moth. Voila! The magic of another fairy in the play: Moth! I can see this being spun into a nice sportweight yarn and used for a baby blanket or layette. Again, how can this not be art? It is certainly magical and involves a lot of creative thought processes and a passion for fiber, spinning, and everything else leading to the yarn and eventually a finished garment.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Fiber Frenzy

Fiber + Fiber = Fun. Yesterday was the Treasure Coast Art Association's First Annual Fiber Show. I think we outdid ourselves. Celeste brought her Angora rabbit to show how to pluck their fur for spinning. Mr. Bunny loved it and fell asleep in her lap while being plucked. If rabbits could purr!
She also brought her Majacraft wheel and her rug loom. I will definitely have to try making one of those fleece rugs. I showed everyone how to design a yarn using my drum carder. The batts were totally gorgeous made with a dark blue and emerald green superwash, gold angelina, and a beautiful silk hankie from Gale's Art. I also felted a soap and dyed some fiber and some yarn using Kool Aid. Nffra was painting her breathtaking denim art clothes, Bonnie was there to show her skills in hand painted canvas dropcloths and Jeanne started painting one of her gorgeous silk scarves. We had refreshments and a silent auction. Quite a number of people showed up throughout the afternoon including several of the Knit Sisters from Vero Beach.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Government Spending and Trains

There are many items of government spending that I totally disagree with, but today I lauded the news of money going to develop our rail system. That is until I read the full article. Most of the money to be spent in Florida is for a high speed route from Orlando to Tampa., two cities that are only 90 minutes apart. There are so many other options that would be more usable.

Don't get me wrong, I am all for rail travel. I love it. I do not enjoy air travel in today's world and I think if most people were honest with themselves, they would also admit how little they enjoy air travel. The only good thing about it is speed. The seats are cramped and uncomfortable, security can be a huge hassle, and you spend almost as much time arranging to get on and off the airplane as you spend in the air. You can't move around much and you certainly don't have any scenery to enjoy. With a train you can move around, enjoy the almost hassle free travel, and even have a wonderful meal in the onboard restaurant. The seats are more spacious on a train and even have footrests.

I just feel there would be many better ways to use that rail development money in Florida. In the first place I wish they would reinstate the New Orleans to Jacksonville portion of the Sunset Limited. I would love to once again be able to take the train from West Palm to Houston and beyond. I also wish that they would develop a passenger line all the way down the east coast. It would be so nice to get on the train Fort Pierce and do day trips to Miami or go to the races in Daytona. If we had service along the east coast I would probably get to visit the relatives up north (including my daughter) more often. Service from Orlando to the rest of the east coast (not just Tampa on the west coast) would be a boon to the travel industry. There are probably thousands of people in the Treasure Coast area alone who would go to all the tourist attractions in Orlando and Tampa if they did not have to drive, pay toll roads and pay exorbitant amounts to park in Orlando. As it is we rarely go because the two hour drive each way makes for a very long day, or we have to stay overnight and pay for hotel rooms. We would probably also have more visitors to the Treasure Coast from Tampa and Orlando. The east coast of Florida has many outstanding features for the visitor. There are beautiful beaches, wonderful restaurants, many fantastic galleries and stores, and NASA of course.

I do want to say thank you to the govvernment for investing in Florida's train system. Hopefully this is just a starting point for expanding sevice throughout the rest of the statel

Its A Start

Its time to start working towards making a dream come true. For quite a while now I've wanted to see a real working Fiber Arts Studio in the Fort Pierce area. A proposal for the real thing is being discussed. With some hard work it may actually come to pass, hopefully in time to host a real fiber arts festival in Fort Pierce in 2011.

As my own contribution towards this reality, I've started a Ravelry group - "Treasure Coast Fiber Arts". In less than 12 hours it already has 8 members. This group is aimed at anyone (resident or visitor) who is interested in any type of fiber arts in this area. I'm hoping this group will not only provide a cameraderie and source of information among the members, but also an impetus towards the realization of my dream.

If you read this, I hope you'll help actualize the dream!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

New Day, New Year, New Photos

Finally a new day that may be a little warmer. Haven't wanted to do anything for the last week except huddle under blankets.

This should be an interesting, fantastic year. Daniel (my middle child) will be getting married in July. First wedding in this family. Charlie and I and Bob (our oldest) will be going on an Alaskan cruise in May. (Better get our passports taken care of this week.) And I have lots of interesting things going on with my fiber art.

Today I need to go outside with all of my beautiful yarns and take new photos. The old ones on Etsy are a little drab. Hopefully the sun will lend warmth and light to the fibers.

Phat Fiber Sample Box: Counting Sheep Farm Giveaway!

Phat Fiber Sample Box: Counting Sheep Farm Giveaway!