Summer Updates!

I can’t believe it is August already.  I’m not sure where the time is going!

I took the summer off from teaching, so that I can have lots of time to hang out with my family. The kids and I have been crossing off all sorts of stuff from our “Summer Fun” list that we created at the beginning of the season and we all even managed to do an overnight trip on our sailboat.  We did our first camping of the summer this past weekend and it was so much fun as always.  We upgraded a lot of our equipment because we realized that we camp often enough that it warranted some better supplies.  Everything went seamlessly and we are in love with our new tent.  Algonquin Park is hands-down one of our favourite spots to camp.

Although I haven’t been teaching, I haven’t been idle on the art front. First- I announced a new class that I will be teaching this Fall!  The first session of my two-day “Hooking Realistic Portraits with Yarn” will be held in November. I have started prepping materials and placed a big yarn order to fill out what I already had in terms of a full range of skin tones. The class filled quickly as I had a waiting list of people interested in taking it.  I do plan to offer this class again in the Spring if there is enough interest, so you can email me at if you would like to be on the waiting list for information.  If you have already let me know you are interested in the past don’t worry- I still have you on my list and will be contacting those people before advertising the next session.

Secondly, I will be teaching my “Nature and Landscapes:  Advanced Rug Hooking with Yarn class” on September 9th at Fibrefest in Almonte, Ontario.  It will be my first time teaching a workshop at this venue and I am looking forward to it.  Registration is still open if you are interested.  You can find the workshops on the Mississippi Textile Museum website under Fibrefest 2018.

Thirdly, I have been doing a lot of experimentation this summer.  I have been continuing to play around with combining my hand-woven backings with hand-hooking.  I purchased a pin loom about a month ago and have been having fun figuring out how it works and how I can make it work for me.  I think I have figured out a formula that works for me and now my wheels are spinning thinking of where I can take this new technique.  In addition, I have started experimenting with different paints on linen backing.  It is a technique that I have seen a number of fibre artists use before and it has been on my list to try.  I finally got around to it and was really impressed with some of the results.  I have purchased a fabric medium that I hope to try out soon to see if it will help, particularly with the watercolour paints, to keep them permanent and prevent fading.  Stay tuned as I continue to explore these approaches!

I was also excited to be included in a pottery exhibit put on by my sister and some of her friends called “The Art of Living” in Corner Brook, Newfoundland at the Rotary Arts Centre.  The show just wrapped up and 22 pieces of pottery found new homes!  My piece “Overcast” from my ‘Postcards from Newfoundland’ series was one of several pieces I had in the show and it has gone off to its new home in Texas! 

On the book front, I have finished a full draft of my book and now have printed it all out to do some final edits before submitting it to the publisher.  My deadline is October 1st but I am hoping to have it ready to go a bit before then.  In other news, I have had interest from the same publisher for another idea that I had and the plan is to sign a contract for that book in October.  I have already started lining up artists for this second project and I am so excited because it is going to be so, so good!!

Having the kids home for the summer is always so much fun.  I love that they like to just relax and don’t want to be over scheduled.  It’s perfect.  One of my other goals this summer was to clean out a lot of the toys and books (oh, there are so many books!) that have been outgrown.  With my boy now coming up for six years old it was time to clear out a lot of the toddler toys and little kid books that don’t see any love anymore.  My daughter has always been really good at letting go of things that she is done with and is very anti-clutter and not very into stuff.  I thought my son would be more resistant but he has been awesome about bringing things to me and saying he is done with them and that it is time to pass them on.  I can’t say often enough how much better open-ended toys are for kids both for holding their interest and for creative play.  Plastic toys that can only be played with in one way and with a  million little attachments that get lost all over the house are never a hit around here and I am so glad that my kids are learning the value of handmade things and good quality things.  So good for them and for the environment!

Summer is only half over and there are still so many adventures ahead!  I am looking forward to making the big piece that I started in June more of a priority.  It got pushed to the back-burner a bit as I focused on my weaving pieces.  But I have decided to work exclusively on it for a bit.

My daughter and I are also working on a project together and I am really enjoying the collaboration between us!  We are hoping to get it wrapped up by mid to late Fall so stay tuned as I will be announcing it once it is ready to go.  There are also a few other possible collaborations coming up which I will also announce if they come to fruition.

I think that is all I have to share for now.  Hope you are all enjoying a fabulous summer!