October 29, 2010

No snafoo this time :-)

We managed to get all the math right in this, our latest batch of thread called Velvet.

The usual is available, sizes 10, 20, 40, 80, and collections in 20 and 40.
You can find it HERE :-)

I'd love to hear what you have to say about this color

I'm so glad.....

.....that I took the pictures before my darling baby wiped her snotty nose all over my shirt. Be thankful for the small things I say!
The next few days will be spent in a flurry, literally....as I try to get some stock made up for the upcoming launch of my winter 2010 jewelry, you guessed it --- snowflakes! I have a necklace, and a couple different earring designs. I'll need to get pictures taken this weekend, as well as make a bunch of earring cards and try to get some pricing done for a craft sale next week. Got to line up a babysitter too!

October 26, 2010

A wee snafoo

Upon closer inspection, Dr. Vonthreadmore and I discovered, much to our chagrin, that we had wound an entire batch of thread at 40 yards, instead of the regular 50 yards per skein.

Well, phoey for us, but yay for discounts! I have listed the thread at a price to reflect the shorter skein length, so if you would like to get your hands on some of our newest round of Midsummer Night's Dream, then head on over to our shop. We have sizes 10, 20, and 40 available, with color collections in size 20 and 40.

You should note, that there are a few differences (good ones!) in this batch, from the original version of Midsummer Night's dream. I wound the skeins longer to better accomodate the number of colors, and I have improved the blending between some of the colors as well.

The coordinating colors in the collections are "wine berries" which you will have seen in other batches, as well as a very subtly changing green. Soft and delicate color changes, so they can't be called solids....but perhaps "barely varigated's"

Anyway, we hope you enjoy this latest installment from the Laboratory. I will have a table set up at our lace guild's community event, so you will probably see a few batches come through the blog in the next few weeks as we prepare.

Ta ta!

October 22, 2010

Blingity bling bling....

The girls are headed to a birthday party tomorrow (my hubby generously agreed to take them... while I escape to lace guild....) So I whipped up some little sparkly hairclips. It's late at night so the pictures are lousy, but I'll need to wrap them up and have them ready before I head out the door in the mornin. The budget really only allows for handmade gifts at this time, so be forewarned - if you invite me to your birthday, you'll get some tatting. Oh, and christmas? ... probably some tatting. Our yearly gift exchange? Perhaps some tatting.
Easter? Graduation? Baby shower? Bar Mitzfah?
Until I find gainful part time employment,
You're probably gonna get some tatting.
Disclaimer: no tatted lace was harmed in the making of these hairclips. Hotfix crystals were carefully applied to complete the look, in a safe and humane manner. Thread is Love Potion No. 9

October 20, 2010

Huzzah for the curtains!

Well all, I did manage to finish the curtains this past weekend, one set at least. So now my Living room is darker, but probably warmer. I see one hem that needs tweaking but I am so not interested in fixing that.

Today we made an excursion to the Goodwill today to procure some sweaters. I looked through everything I have, and the kids clothes, and realized that we didn't really have very many sweaters or sweatshirts for the ladies of the house. I don't think we needed them before we moved here, the mobile had forced air and I kept it pretty contant and warm with the kids being little. Now here I just turn on the little wall heaters in the morning for half an hour, the baby (not-so-baby, she is almost 18 months now....) is the only member of the household who doesn't keep her blankies on her at night, so she gets heat overnight. So I took a $20 and managed to come home with an almost new Old Navy sweater for myself, a play sweatshirt for the baby, a sweatshirt, a fleece pullover, a long sleeve shirt, and a chinelle turtleneck sweater for sundays for Ivria. Not bad for twenty bucks.

Some great news on the Etsy front, I've made my sales goal for the month already (which means I need to set a higher one that will actually support us, scary!)..... which is great because I haven't been able to find a part time job yet. If I can keep things rolling the next week or two, I will have enough put away to sustain us through next month. I have two craft sales next month, and my aunt might take a few things on consignment to a show she is doing this weekend. So, we will see how things pan out. I have had several people inquire about wholesale, but looking at my pricing structure, I don't think that's in the cards right now.

So things are going well here. I can feel myself losing focus sometimes, it takes an immense amount of willpower to have cut back our spending. Even a candy bar purchase has to be analyzed at this point. The amazing byproduct of the situation is that we (and not just I the bookkeeper) are together more keenly aware of our finances. I didn't really notice before this how much we frittered away on little thoughtless stuff. Meals out are out of the question, so I've learned to pack peanutbutter and jelly sandwiches when we will be gone more than an hour or so. I'm using the fresh foods I buy more diligently, knowing that half a head of lettuce wasted each week, over a year, adds up to the cost of a couple of oil changes potentially. This new awareness brings a sense of power. :-) We have so much less money, but so much more unity and teamwork in our marriage. And the great part is, because we made this choice, we don't feel ashamed about our situation. I'm proud of us. Feels kinda like we needed to leave the nest in a way, even though we are in our late twenties and early thirties. I'm spending time developing friendships, because without my ministry involvement, I realized that I had no social life. I'm spending more energy on the quality of time I have with the girls. Before, they were always with me even at work/church, but even today I just sat and watched Ivria building a house for her imaginary pet "bugs". It's amazing how you can be around your kids all day, but lose sight of appreciating them. When my energy was going so many different ways, I didn't have any left to step into their worlds and play imaginary games. Last night before bed we pretended that we were the Wonderpets (kids tv show). We rescued baby crabs, and flew in our airplane. And I again realized how amazing and wonderful my life is. And I'm crying right now because I am just so happy to be me. I have stretch marks, and my body is not perfect, but I have a husband who can't keep his hands off me, and I know that he would never leave me or cheat on me. I have the most amazing little girls who are the constant light of my life, even when most of what was the previous meal is all over the floor.... one sweet game of "kiss me through the crib slats mama" makes that all dissapear. Sigh.

Wow that was a long sappy post. I need to go wind off some thread for a dye batch tonight, but I'll be back soon. Ten points if you made it this far :-)

October 19, 2010

The Slippers.

The children's feet are officially warmer after the welcome treat of handmade slippers..


And of course I couldn't let them out of tatting corner without some Tatting attached, now could I? These blue slippers belong to my eldest, and she got ahold of them after I had added one flower, and it took a day for me to get them back to attach the other. The baby has some purple ones that are more like booties. They have ties, and the amazing news is that she cannot get them off! So she even has guaranteed warm feet at night. Sigh. It's a good bit of comfort for me to know that their little tootsies are toasty!

October 15, 2010

I feel bad.....

...if I don't have pictures to show, or if I only show pictures of stuff going to the shop.

That's why you sometimes see me go several days without a post.

Spanish Dancer in Lizbeth Autumn Spice

I've had a busy week, filling some orders etc. I've had a special order for size 3 crochet thread in my Midsummer Night's Dream colorway, so I will reprise that shortly in tatting sizes as well. I'll be lengthening the skeins to a yard and a half this time, to have the color changes be a little longer.

In other news, I am making a short but necessary foray back into crochet. In my current state of joblessness (been handing out resumes like candy) we are doing all we can to save moola. That means leaving the heat off as much as possible.....we have those darned expensive wall mounted fan things. (the only thing I miss from our former mobile home is the forced air...) So the kids feet have been a little cold. They won't keep socks on their feet (mostly because I don't wear socks I think :-) but they cannot resist the novelty of mommy-made-slippers. In fact, my eldest (3 yrs old) came running out of her room after she woke up..... and ran straight to my tatting/sometimes-crochet corner to see if her promised slippers had been finished. I wanted to put some tatted flowers on them for her, but she won't give back the slippers for a hot second. I'll have to do that while she sleeps I guess, but I think I'll have to sneak in her room and steal them from her feet while she is zonked out. There is a certain satisfaction I gain from her approval of the slippers I must say. Hopefully the baby will like the pair I'm making for her.

Anyway, both are sleeping right now, so I should get to work on the house some. We plan on taking the girls to a cafe to hear some live Jazz played by a friend tonight. (hopefully the cafe staff won't mind that we will be sharing a cookie between the four of us) I am definitely looking forward to a little family fun. Saturday will be spent on the chore of hemming curtains. I purchased them when we had more income, and I was going to have a seamstress do it for me. BUt now I've opened my big mouth and promised hubby that I'd finish them myself this weekend. There are four panels, triple layered, so I'll have to somehow cut them straight, undo the side seams at the bottom, and hem all three layers. Ugh! I cringe at the thought of it. But, the extra insulation on the windows might help the heating bill too...so I can't really argue that. It's because of those darn heaters that i have to do all this hemming anyway......some lazy goofball who lived here before didn't bother to reposition the heaters to logical places when they switched them out from baseboard heaters.....so the curtains all have to be hemmed to the windowsills as to not catch the house on fire.

Anyway, my ramble is over. I'll hopefully be able to show you the slippers with tatted flowers tomorrow, and report on my success or failure with this curtain project. Wish me luck!

October 11, 2010

Ever get a song stuck in your head?

Well I've been singing Love Potion Number 9 in my head for like 36 hours.
So Dr. Vonthreadmore and I named our latest batch thusly.

It's a very interesting batch. Usually we don't use leftover dye more than a few hours after it is mixed..... the colors shift and change over time if left out. I've heard refrigeration helps, but it's more predictable to just mix new each time to attain expected results. This time however, Dr Vonthreadmore neglected to wash out her dye cups for a few days. She begged and pleaded that she's been dying to try some new blending techniques..... I brought up the fact that it had been a few days and we would have no idea what would happen--- That's when I saw that flash of mad scientist in her eyes so I quickly exited the scene.
We only did a few skeins in this colorway, and it was mixed in a way that is completely unrepeatable..... so if you like it, get it before it is gone! I think it turned out great, it fades from a pearly gray to rasberry, with a touch of light lavender.

This pair of earrings is made with one of the solids from the "Of Fairies And Berries" batch. It has the faintest color intensity change to it, you probably can't even see it in the photos. I absolutely love colors like that though, where the change is so gentle that it doesn't interrupt the design in any way, but gives it that extra depth.
These earrings also showcase some new Delica beads that I have aquired. And yes Elizabeth, I am now addicted.

October 9, 2010

Of Berries And Fairies

Dr Vonthreadmore's newest,

Of Berries And Fairies

Hand dyed cotton thread, now available here in sizes 10, 20, 40, 80, with color collections in sizes 20 and 40. The size 80 from this batch is in Lizbeth this time around as well!

October 6, 2010

Vineyard at Dusk in crochet!

Here is what someone has made in crochet with my Vineyard at Dusk Hand Dyed thread! Isn't that cool?

October 4, 2010

I might have to start playing christmas music

I am having such a hard time working on snowflakes! I promised myself this year, that I would have some snowflake jewelry designed and made this year....early...to be ready for the season and holiday shows etc. So I spent a good portion of my tatting time last week prototyping, and I think I have it down. But our weather has taken a definite turn towards Autumn, and I am having trouble resisting the new Lizbeth I ordered.

I didn't even look at whether or not these coordinate when I ordered, but I got the new green leafy varigated in size 10, and Leaf Green Light in size 20. I don't think I realized until they were finished that the colors were a match lol.

It's funny, 'cause I've really been gravitating towards some of the same colors all year. My walls are a light green, I have orange accents in the house, and if you look at the business cards I made, as well as my thread pallate as of late, and then also my current blog background with the little orange owl lol.....

October 2, 2010

ehem..."business" expenses

Well, at least that's what I told Dr. Vonthreadmore as we opened our box from Handy Hands this week. We had ordered a cone of Lizbeth 40 in white for the Dr, and her eyebrow raised slightly at the sight of these...
"Really." she said. "did you really need more shu....." I chimed in with an emphatic YES before she could finish.

"And what about all this?" She frowned upon having found a ball of Lizbeth Autumn Spice in size 10, and another one in 20.

"Isn't my thread good enough for you anymore?" She almost couldn't look at me, she was so disgusted. "I had a coupon" I replied. She just rolled her eyes and walked away. Good thing she hadn't seen the three or four other colors of lizbeth I had ordered hiding under the packing peanuts. Anyway, I found the new autumn spice so enticing that I stayed up way too late last night making some earrings and hairclips, even a ring.

After watching her sulk around all day, I had to lift her spirits and prove to her that her threads were indeed valuable to me. So I made myself a pair of earrings. "After all" I said, "They have yet to make Lizbeth in a decent Teal. You know how much I love teal." I caught her peering over my shoulder a few times while I made these for myself. "You should make a pair for the shop too while you are at it. The people must have opportunity to experience the magnificent color that I have created as well. You shouldn't keep it all for yourself. Art like mine should be accessible to the masses and I......" Her voice trailed off in some mumbling paragraph about the value of her work and her impact on the world or something like that.

She is eccentric, I'll admit. Without her however, I would not have the "perfect teal". That to me is worth the occasional bout of nonsense.
(for those of you not familliar with my alter-ego, the illustrious and industrious Dr. Von threadmore, you can read more about our history together here)

October 1, 2010

Da winnah

Tattips! You've won!

I've sent you an email, if you'll send me your address, Dr. Vonthreadmore and I will be sending your package soon.

A big thanks to all 70 people who entered..... it's cool to see all the lurkers come out. SO don't be strangers anymore! I love all of your comments. Always makes my day friends.