Friday, September 28, 2012

Hats and cats

The hat obsession has continued and moved on from Madd Hatter hats for people to witch hats for cats!
The red one was a TDF prize donation that went to Canada!
The turquoise one was a gift for a lovely dancer friend Edenia
The cat hats remain unfelted ...then they may be too small for Dinah & Jenny Linsky after felting.  That means I have to make some larger ones today.

Monday, September 17, 2012

BFLA - Belly Fusion Los Angeles

 BFLA did an awesome show in Hollywood on Saturday night called Cinema Classics 
She'enedra danced with Jillian in my place (so imagine her in this picture instead of me).  They did a tribute to Rosemary Clooney with some of my choreography as well as a She'enedra choreography.  I went along to watch and sported a hot pink wig since I thought that would be more cheerful than a hat!

AND they got some great pictures in the L.A. Weekly!  So take a look at that!!
I also am writing a review of the show which will include a lot more pictures later this week!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Autumn Tablecloth

Every year we decorate our house with an Autumn theme right before my husband's birthday because it's our favorite time of year.  This year I wanted to make a tablecloth for our yearly celebration.  And it seemed like I could just buy some nice calico prints, use one for a center piece and then build large rectangle bands around it for borders.  When I put the fabrics that I bought onto the table I just didn't think one was right for a center piece.  So I started looking online at different quilt type tablecloths I began by considering a log cabin type pattern, but I couldn't find anything that made me feel satisfied.  My dining table is really large and whatever I put on it makes a really big statement.  It is also one of the first things you see upon entering my home so it is important to me that it look extra nice.

As do all humans, I enjoy of the beauty of things designed based on the Golden Ratio and the Fibonacci sequence.  This basic design principle can be found everywhere from nature-in the spiral pattern in a sunflower to architecture- the Parthenon and the pyramids.  Even a cornucopia an ultimate symbol of Fall follows this mathematical design principal.   I was first introduced to the idea by weaving friends who were using Fibonacci for planning stripes in their warps using the sequence.   I've used it in making handwoven scarves and dishcloths and found it very pleasing!

I'll try to explain how it works as best I can.  Not being a mathematician this may be somewhat flawed but here goes.
For stripes the sequence is
0, 1, 1, 2, 3,5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55 etc
to get this pattern you add a number to the previous one
so if you want to have a stripe sequence starting with 5 yellow yarns you would do this
0+5=5 yarns
5+5=10 yarns
5+10=15 yarns
and so forth until you have enough threads to make what you want.

But then I had to figure out how to make this into a flat piece of fabric.  I pondered this picture from  Wikipedia for a long time:
Here's the source for the picture

I wanted more squares-after all I was stuck on the whole Fibonacci idea.  I found these pictures of the Fibonacci sequence inside of the Golden rectangle:  Source:

Eventually I made the decision that I wanted rectangles of about 24" x 15 1/2".  To make this size I needed 4 different sized square pieces of 1-15", 1-9", 1-6", 2-3".  I added 1/2" to every square for the seam allowance.  I am making 8 of these completed rectangles and then I will alternate in between them with plain fabric rectangles.  If I ever get to the point where I quilt the surface I will use the spiral shape as a motif.

Voila!  A balanced looking design and that reflects the ultimate symbol of Autumn as well!

I am not going to finish this in time for Robert's birthday...fortunately he seems amused by all the hoopla I made over making him a tablecloth (what a sweetheart after all he doesn't really want a tablecloth for his birthday) I think he's just touched by the thought of it.  And he will be getting a pumpkin cheesecake so that should satisfy him temporarily.
p.s. Aren't those pumpkins cute?  They are from my garden.

Friday, September 14, 2012

My life right now

I wasn't actually planning to blog about this but it seems that I actually need to do it.  A few months ago when I had surgery to remove my thyroid it was discovered that I had non Hodgekins Lymphoma.  I was so lucky that this was discovered fairly early in the game as well as the fact that this is one of the easiest cancers to cure.  The treatment is really pretty minimal.  Normally I would only choose natural treatments, but since I have been assured that chemotherapy and radiation are very effective for this particular fast growing cancer I have chosen that option.  I am UNBELIEVABLY grateful to my husband, family and friends, they have been beyond helpful and supportive.  Also I have the good fortune to have excellent health insurance...there are some costs but they are small compared to all the work that is happening.

The reason I'm blogging about this now is because I haven't been able to keep up with my blog and Etsy shop as well as I'd like to.  There are so many days I stare at my computer and I just can't write anything even though my brain is swimming with thoughts and ideas.  And forget about trying to hold two dance troupes together!   Currently my troupe mate and friend Tonantzin is teaching my classes at the AHCCC and my daughter Jillian is teaching the home class.

The reality is that I'm just a lot more tired then I would have imagined.  I am positive and know that I will be well again.  For now my focus is my health in the meantime I'm going to keep to posting and sharing but probably not as consistently as I would like!  So I'm here just not super reliable.

Thursday, September 6, 2012


 Gem is the name of my newest pet!  Yes...he is a goat!  An angora goat to be specific.  He was named Gem because he is a gem just an incredibly sweet old boy.  His previous owner passed away and her partner didn't have a clue what to do with him, so he sent out a message to our guild for an adoptive parent.  In Gem's case he has co-parents, me & Deb.  Deb is the owner of the other 4 goats in the picture and she has a nice little ranch where Gem lives!  Deb's other goats are 2 pygoras, & 2 angoras.
I love this shot of Gem, I like to think he is smiling at me!  Or he is growling...but I don't think so!

 Gem is 8 years old and he is a whether (aka fixed).  The other goats are babies,  all under 18 months.  While I was out visiting Deb and her lovely family and ranch a package came with bumps of the pygora's first shearing!  Amazing fiber!!  I wanted to spin it!!  She'd better sell me some!  Tee hee!
All these guys have the cutest little faces.  And they are a happy little herd.  When I get a big property I will get some goats to live there too, and some sheep, and I also want milking goats.  But for now I have to live my ranch dreams vicariously through Deb!  

 Deb purchased this blue eyed Angora from Namaste Farms.
Here are some more pictures of our weekend with the Meadows family!
 Deb's husband with his new horse and Great Danes.
 Peyton gets a chance on the new horse!

 And even my city boy Robert gets to take a ride!
 English game hens, I want to get some of these.
 Cisco the new horse.
I'm teaching Deb to weave in exchange for Gem's room and board.  For me its a good trade!