May 19, 2011

To market, to market.

Two weeks ago I braved the local farmer's market for the first time.




And it was a hot mess :-P

I'll Start at the beginning.

A long time ago, in a land far, far away, lived a fair maiden who charmed the world with her beautiful laces and creations. Much prosperity was promised to the princess, if she would only come with her wares, to the market to sell on Mother's day weekend. "It's the best weekend of all!!!" enticed the rulers of the market square. "Subjects from all the lands come to be merry and spend their gold on fine goods such as yours!"

Enthralled by the prospects, the maiden spent many hours making lace, preparing fine displays, purchasing tables, linens, and CPAI-84 regulation flame retardant canopies (not so easy a task as you might think! Only one merchant in the entire KINGDOM could provide her with such a rare and unusual item. Sidewalls had to be sent for, from far distant lands!).

For weeks, she slaved over her Cricut electronic scrapbooking cutter, making tags and cards to compliment her adornments. She monogrammed, personalized, and labeled all of the fine packaging....and with the help of her Fairy Godmother, and her prince charming, the wagons were loaded and everything was finally readied for her to depart.

Awakening at dawn on that fateful day, the maiden and her fairy godmother set off for the town square. The sun shone like glory from heaven itself! This day would be a dream come true! She just knew it! But with as the miles were traveled, the dark doom beset them. The clouds swirled with malice as they neared. Working fiercely, the tables were set and the tent was tied down with 25lbs per leg, according to the laws of the land. As the evil weather taunted them with with a sad slow drizzle, the intrepid maiden and her companion huddled in the cold and waited.

The tower bell tolled.

Another hour passed. And another, each marked solemnly by the tower's deep haunting chime.

A few small items were sold before the deepening clouds engulfed them. Villagers scattered as suddenly, hail and torrential rain poured down! Like pieces of shattered dreams, it fell on her carefully prepared displays. The wind, angry and destructive, tore things from her grasp, leaving her treasured creations soggy and in danger of staining from the wet ink on her fine parchment cards. In it's final attempt to destroy her, the wind grasped her leaking canopy and wrenched it's bars with such force that it bent the structure of her only shelter in the tempest.

Wet and bedraggled, and surrounded by wilting lace, she conceded her defeat. Packing away her treasures, as quickly and carefully as possible, the pair of women made their way back to their small village and home.

The young, beautiful, intelligent maiden had lost her glass slipper that day.

But do not fear, fine gentlefolk.....

for she will return tomorrow to that fateful market square to seek her glory again! Her wagon is readied, her heart (and tent) will be strongly fastened and prepared for the dangers and perils that await.

To be continued.......

this is a (mostly) true story. names have been changed to protect the innocent. displays and EZ-up canopy products were harmed in the making of this tale.

May 18, 2011

Come and gone

Today is a happy/sad day. Mom is on a jet plane headed back home...... we are so happy she was here for the past weeks, very sad that she is gone. We hope to have you bless our home with your presence again soon Nana Karrieann!

May 11, 2011

Shuttlebirds, sans pictures.

I've come to grips with my loss of pictures from my recent trip to Shuttlebirds tatting workshop, and I'll push through my reluctance to post about it without pictures, to tell you a little of my adventures!

Our initial plans were to drive all together: myself, my Mom, Gram, and our friend Barb. Due to unforseen circumstances, Gram wasn't able to make it after all though. We were terribly sad to not have her company, but we drove to spokane without event, or speeding tickets. After last year's episode, religious use of the Cruise control was prescribed and adhered to.

At the event, I was given a table to sell my wares. I brought along all those batched of thread I had slaved over in the preceding week, as well as the kits and patterns for my classes, and small selection of my jewelry. I was on the fence about bringing jewelry to put out, but in the end I sold more of that than I did thread! Go figure! All of my things were well received, and I even took a custom order for a set of jewelry.

My first class was with Karey Solomon. She offered a pattern for a small tatted bag built onto a large button. It is all chain work, very relaxing. (honestly, this being my first year as an instructor, I was saving my energy for the classes I would be teaching, not knowing exactly how things would go). Once I get the bag finished from that class, I will show you.

Next that day was my first session teaching my Sweet Pea earring pattern. I had around 5 or 6 students, making it an excellent first attempt at sharing a technique with a group. We laughed, they caught on real quick, and most students finished one of their earrings....some even came the next morning wearing a complete pair! Nothing makes you feel quite so good as seeing your "students" succeed!! That was it for friday sessions, afterword the "tat off" competition was held. I chose to abstain this year, but I will join in next year for sure.

Many vendors were there, and I had to behave myself in order to be a responsible business owner and show a profit after all was said and done.....but I did pick up some Lizbeth from Debbie @ DS9. And a little yellow owl print drawstring tatting bag. Pictures to come. :-)

And Lauren Snyder just happened to have the most perfect horn shuttle at her table. It had my name on it, I swear! (well, after I stuck a lable on it for her to hold until the end of the day for me :-)

Saturday brought a class taught by Jessica Spaulding. She had these awesome little purse frames, and was teaching the pattern for a coin purse. Tatting directly onto the frame was the biggest challenge, so I didn't get all that far in the class....but I do intend to finish it and put it to use.

After that I taught Sweet Pea earrings to another group, this time 10 or 12 tatters. Everybody had good things to say about the class, I am so thankful!

My last session was teaching my rhinestone swirl bracelet. Now that class was a hoot! Everyone did well with the technique.... now there will be blingy wrists with tatted lace and rhinestone everywhere! I was a little worried about having been scheduled in that last time slot of the event, brain fatique caught up with me last year by that time... but the pattern/idea wasn't too complicated and it turned out to be a pretty relaxing project for the end of the road.

All in all, I had a great experience. I plan on going back with new patterns and techniques next year!