My (Oh So) Slow Fashion

One exciting day last week. I finished my first piece of Alabama Chanin slow fashion. Most of my inspiration for starting the whole slow fashion/Alabama Chanin phase of my crafting life, came from Vicki (as you well know). Her vision and her constancy are nothing short of awe-inspiring.


After I bought all the books and ogled the AC Journalfollowing the blogs of people who sew, and watching their Instagram feeds, I decided to take the plunge. I am in awe of Vicki who will start from scratch, reuse old Ts, do her own dyeing, and/or stenciling (even cutting the stencils), then air brush the design onto fabric, but I will only stitch if it is easy to put the project together.


It was January when I took the first stitches on my Magdalena DIY Shirt. Stitching was easy and I would have been finished months ago had I not decided each petal would that much more spectacular filled with beads. Beading was slow, but worth doing, as I'm very happy with the shabby chic elegance. 


After months of working with tiny beads of all sizes, sewing the T-shirt together was a piece of cake. I think I'll do another, sans beads, with more stitching detail, because sewing was the fun part. 

When the Unthinkable Happens

Over the weekend, Carole and Dale lost a dear friend, which brought up today's subject for Ten on Tuesday, 10 Things You Can Do To Be Supportive When Someone Dies.


Grieving is often hardest after friends and family have gone back to their lives and the bereaved is left alone. Maybe a week or two, even maybe a month after the funeral, your friend will face a quiet house and a ton of grief and it's likely they'll need you more after the dust has settled.

 1. Call and catch up on a regular basis. Listen to anything they have to say. Yes, this might require a phone call instead of just texting. 

2. Suggest something they might like to do, something as simple as going for a walk.  It's very likely the bereaved will be processing their grief for quite a long time.

3. If an event is coming up, like Halloween, take them a special treat and make sure they're not left to the ghosts and goblins alone. Decorate their front door, send them cute notes, and  cards in the mail.

4. Make sure they have some place to be on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Some people have family, some don't.

5. Don't be afraid to ask them what it is they need, although, some people don't even know what they need. Let your friend know (by your actions) you're there for them. Every day, every month can hold a new landmark. Every holiday, every event will bring up new grief.

6.  By making other friends aware you may find willing compatriots to help lend a helping hand or listening ear. Create a circle of support, love, and listeners.

7. Listen to silence if that's all your friend has to offer. Just sit next to them and let them grieve quietly, but be there if they need you.

8. Share pictures with your friend that they may not have. Maybe you have enough to share that will make up an album or a little book. Share memories and stories as you sit together.

9. Don't forget your friend on the first, second, third anniversary. Time may have passed but the pain and loss will be strongly felt.

10. Celebrate with your friend (if they are up to it) the life of their loved one. Be kind, gentle, not needy of your own grief. Surround your friend with love.


Five Things About My Weekend


1. Friday counts as part of the weekend (in my estimation) and the rain and thunderstorms that day were impressive and exciting. My view, as I returned from lunch, was of a huge black cloud full of lightning and thunder. I tried numerous times to capture the lighting, but it evaded my camera lens. 


2. Saturday, just as I was driving away from the library, and heading to dinner with a friend, the tiniest part-arc of a rainbow appear at the mouth of Big Cottonwood Canyon. You can see I was stopped at a red light and not snapping pictures whilst operating my car. This little bit of rainbow delighted me and I, for once, I was happy to stop at the light. 

3. I have no picture to share for number three, but the the churros I had for dessert, following a delicious taco dinner, were wonderful. I ate them before I remembered to take a picture, but the crunchy outside and soft warm center (dusted with sugar and cinnamon, dipped in whipped cream and/or chocolate) created a mouth full of joy. 

Do not worry, I am not dead or ill as the next photo might suggest.


4. I had a bit of a disaster while trying to fill one of my fountain pens. I wanted the last drop of ink from the bottle and ended up squirting it all over my hands, my face, and my shirt. I am a novice fountain pen owner (my pens belonged to Smith's mother) and I am trying to get the hang of filling cartridges and converters. I am grateful the ink washed out of everything except my fingernails (which will be clear of blue soon enough). 


5. Sunday dawned clear and cool, with beautiful blue skies and entertaining clouds. Smith had the day off (yay!) and after breakfast, we took a walk, taking time for a little photo shoot (which you'll see later in the week). Because we had most of the day together, we were able to take advantage of the beautiful day and spend time on the patio, grilling dinner and making the most of our day. 

How did your weekend go? Did you have a lovely one whether rained on or no? 

A Long, Long Time Ago

Once upon a time, I made amazing pieces of lace, they were a frippery, a lovely indulgence, a glorious bit of fun, and, often time, challenging, demanding, a test of endurance. In the end, they would be tucked away and rarely if ever worn. This amazing Hidcote had a spectacular photo op at Bryce Canyon, but then it languished, waiting, tucked in a cupboard. It was when my sister said she would like a shawl to wear at her wedding the idea of giving it a new life struck me.

I feel as if there was a reason I made this shawl in 2007, a reason that came to light in 2015.  My sister needed a hug of support and love during one the most important moments of her life and I am very happy I could be there for her in every way.

Let's Call This Post WIP Wednesday


On Monday's post, Jo asked where was the yarn in the pictures from Alta and, I must confess, there was only a tiny bit of knitting and a whole lot of tinking done. I sewed a little, too, but mostly visited, stared at the mountains, the golden aspens, and did a whole lot of just nothing. Mountain air is calming, as is hanging out and chatting with friends (not to mention eating and drinking). Thanks to Anna, we all found a new to us, but instant favorite wine. (This wine had nothing to do with my knitting ennui.) 

With my Alabama Chanin T-shirt all but finished, I took along the AC Market Bag that has not been forgotten, but has only been languishing, and it will now get the majority of my (sewing). I am in no rush. Soon, you will be seeing a photo shoot of the finished AC T, which I'm happy to report, has had it's debut as a finished object.  


Knitting will not take a backseat to stitching, but I came to a realization yesterday and I know my heart isn't into the project I've been struggling against. The pattern is fine, I love the shawl, the yarn, and the process, BUT...there is a big but, I need to knit something else and I think I know what that is.  You'll find out soon, too. 

Weekend Viewing


I had a room with a view this weekend at the Rocky Mountain Knitter's Retreat. We took over Alta Lodge and had a great time knitting, talking, laughing, eating, drinking and then doing it all again. I had a fabulous massage on Saturday that calmed down many of my back problems. 


From the dinning room we could see a sliver of a view of the sunset and the valley below. Leaving all the news, the running about, and the day to day of life down in the valley was quite a treat. I hardly looked at my phone and took very few pictures. It was just a fabulously relaxing weekend. 

21580399938_398457ee9a_kBefore I left the canyon on Sunday I drove up the road to look down on the city of Alta and it's scenic beauty. The colors of the aspens were as bright and golden as can be and the sky gave all it could to the weekend, too. 

Last night I watched the moon come up near total eclipse and kept watching until the shadow passed and the moon was whole again. Being able to watch this stunning phenomenon was a wonderful cap to my weekend.  Today I have the day off and I'm going to run my usual errands, But will also take a few minutes to relax and keep the calm beauty of the weekend within my heart. 

Words in the Wild

Words in the Wild was started by Kym (my memory isn't all that great, but I think that's what happened) and she has a knack for finding words here and there. Honestly, I'm not sure whether WitW is a Wednesday or Thursday thing, but I'm doing it today, in any case. 


Last weekend, I had to stop by one of the big box department stores to pick up new "foundations" and, as I walked from one department to the next, I saw this sign. It not only tickled me, I knew it would make Kym smile, too.

My life has been so busy, with mostly good things (and work), but with a little trouble here and there. Monday night someone rear-ended my car and while I am okay (a little sore) and the car is still drivable, everything just feels even more complicated (it IS more complicated). 

One of the really good things happening this weekend is the Alta Knitter's Retreat. The weather will be superb (70-80s) and I decided to add a day to my stay to take advantage of the fantastic weather. The aspen leaves should be at their full glory, too. 

Enjoy your weekend, my friends!

After the Fact

Well, since all the cool kids did it, I decided to print off a BOTNS Summer Bingo card and see how I did...after the fact. 

The Xs cross through a subject I wouldn't have read given the chance. A few squares are left blank as not one of the 20 books I read came close to fitting in a squaret. (Although if I'd had this card earlier, I might have tried.) Some books I moved just to get a Bingo and I think that's fair. In the end, that trick gave me two Bingos.  In full disclosure, I did cheat by refreshing the card until I had a one that gave me a chance and I think that's fair, too. My guess is few of you took the first card you were handed, right? 

My favorite books of all that I read this summer were the 4 books by Elena Ferrante, known as the Neapolitan novels.  If you decide to read even one, you must read all 4, as they only get better with each story. The last one, recently published, was the best of all! 

If you have any questions about the books I've read I'll answer them and I'd love to know what your favorite book of the summer was, Bingo or no!