Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Bye Bye, DC

Photo by PostcardsofthePast on Etsy
We are leaving DC today after two and a half years. First to visit family for Christmas, and then flying to Hong Kong in one week. From there, three months in Thailand, Cambodia and India.

I knew almost nothing about DC before I moved here (except that Joe moved here and there was an internship waiting for me at The Textile Museum). It's been such a great place to live, start a business, make so many amazing new friends, and stay in touch with all the old friends that live in the area.

Thanks to everyone who has made the last few years so much fun. Bye bye, DC, but I will definitely be back!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Custom Poetry Books

l have a custom project to show you today: I've been working on a cover illustration for a book of poetry that will be self-published by the author. We met at the Fenton Street Market a few months ago, and she was looking for a block print to go on the front of each book.

I carved her a rooster print, and then a separate block with the title and name. The letters are tiny, about a 1/4 inch tall, and took about five hours to carve. They are definitely the smallest letters I've ever carved.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


As you may know, my friend Rachel recently got back from a textile research trip to Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan. Her next stop will be Hong Kong with us! She brought back a collection of Suzanis, traditional Uzbek embroidered quilts, and they are gorgeous. I bought this one from her basically as soon as she stepped off the plane (I think my first question was "What textiles you bring back?!?").

This piece was hand embroidered by one of Rachel's Uzbek friends, and you can see all the individual stitches on the back. It's on my bed right now, and I plan on hanging it on the wall of my next apartment. It's one of the most beautiful textiles I've ever seen. Thanks Rachel!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Last Day to Order for Christmas Delivery!

My shop will be closing tonight at midnight for the holidays, so today is the last day to order in time for Christmas delivery! All orders placed today will ship first thing tomorrow, so get them in before midnight.

The shop will reopen after Christmas with new inventory to start the new year, and will stay open while I am in India, thanks to my amazing intern Kelly. (There is still time to order from her as well, I especially love this wreath card.)

So make sure you get those orders in today for Christmas delivery, right here in the shop.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Block Printing at the Smithsonian

On Saturday morning, I taught my first block printing class at the Smithsonian Community Museum in Anacostia. The class was free and open to the public, and there was a huge response, so they are planning to run another class in the spring.

We went over the basics of how to carve and print linoleum blocks, and each student got to create their own design and print it. All set up and ready to go:

We started with carving blocks, learning how to use the different knives, transfer the designs, and carve the design backwards. Then everyone drew their own designs and learned how to carve the blocks.

Then we learned how to print the blocks, and different techniques to get good prints. It was great to see the different designs people came up with; there was everything from a monogram to a Bible verse.

Thanks to all the students for coming! It was really fun to help everyone learn a new technique, and I can't wait to do it again in the spring. I will let you all know when we set a date!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Last Show of the Year!

Tomorrow (Thursday) will be my last craft show of the year at the Downtown Holiday Market. It's been an amazing year, and after some number crunching I realized that last weekend was my best show to date, so thank you to everyone who stopped by the booth!

If you want to stop by one more time, you can come this Thursday from 11:30am-8pm outside the National Portrait Gallery (I'll be the one wearing 100 coats and five scarves) and you can find more information here. I hope to see you there!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

To Make in 2012

The year is winding down, and my plan for Christmas involves a lot of pajama-wearing and crafting. I've also started to think of some long-term projects that I'd like to get started on, since I haven't made anything non-business-related in a long time. Here are a few projects from around the web I'm thinking of working on in the next year:

Oh, Fransson
A quilt. My mom and I have been collecting fabric scraps for years (she has some that have been waiting to be used for twenty years) and I've been saving the extra pieces from all the coin purses I've sewed this year. I want to make a big, complicated bedspread; something that will take a long time to finish, so I've been collecting some pattern inspiration. I think I'm going to go with blues and reds like the image above, and work with a triangular pattern.

Michelle McCormick


Purl Bee


Purl Bee
I'd also like to start using the bagfuls of yarn I have stashed in the closet. I love the look of the granny squares in the second image. The same pattern as the originals, but an updated color scheme from the 70s black-and-neon quilts I remember.
Wood and Wool Stool

I really like the idea of these faux cyanotypes from Geninne. I got a Sunprint kit for Christmas last year, and hoped to post the results here, but it was a disaster. I realized that the only sunny place I had access to was my roof, and the day I went up there was so windy that the paper flew all over the place. I think I could do one of these in a more controlled environment.

I saw this painting and it really caught my eye; I like the way it looks like it was done quickly, but also contains so much intricate pattern. It was a good reminder that I'd like to get back into painting.

Design Work Life
I love both of these candles, and especially the Chinese bowl, I thought it would be a really easy project to throw in to this list of extremely ambitious projects. Now to find the time!

Design Sponge


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Around the (New) Studio

We moved out of our apartment last week to get ready to leave for India in 22 (!) days. We are staying with Joe's mom temporarily, and I've set up a mini temporary studio in the corner of the apartment.

It's been difficult to work between the boxes and packing materials strewn everywhere, but this is the busiest time of the year and I am in a frenzy of packing orders, getting ready for shows and finishing up custom work. I've also been busy contacting people in India, booking flights and hotels, and finally got all my visa paperwork sorted out last night.

Last weekend's Downtown Holiday Market was a huge success (one of my best shows ever) so I'm busy restocking everything for this weekend.

Things are moving so fast; we are going to be out of the country in no time!

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