Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Winter crafting

I like to think of myself as an artist...not a crafter.  No offense to crafters, as my work cannot compare to master craftsmen.  I just feel I travel to a different beat sometimes.  That's one of the reasons this is "renaissance" living.  I perfect nothing, but sample everything.  I also tend not to exactly follow the rules..

My current favorite "craft" is quilting.  There is no way I could make one of those beautiful traditional quilts in a full size.  I just don't have the patience.  I can't see cutting and sewing the exact same thing over and over again.  And matching up points perfectly....the people who can do that are saints.  I have found a few websites and blogs, however, that inspire my creativity and crafting.  I love Block Lotto.     A different block is presented each month.  You can try it and put it in the "lotto".  If you "win" you get blocks sent to you, enough for a quilt. otherwise, your block is mailed to someone else.  I'm currently working on putting together the blocks I won a couple of months ago.  But with each month's block, I'm learning better quilting techniques in new ways without a big commitment.  I also love the Stay At Home Robin.  Each month there are new instructions to add to our quilt.  It's just a small quilt, so again, no big investment.  But the instructions are very open ended so it is truly a design challenge. I'm actually working on two SAHR quilts.  While the instructions were the same, the quilts are vastly different.  Very fun.
Another craft that is popular with me is crochet.  I especially tend to pick it up in the winter.  There's something about curling up on a couch with a quilt on you lap, hot coffee on the table, a dog snuggled into your side, and soft yarn being crocheted in your hands.  If I had a working fireplace it would be a perfect winter picture.

To encourage and inspire my favorite crafts, I traipse around the internet checking in on blogs and websites.  The thing about blogs is that one tends to lead you to another. And I love when I discover someone new to admire.  Her name is Ashley Martineau and her business is Neauveau Fiber Arts. She spins and dyes her own yarn and does freeform crochet and some crazy knitting. She has given me the desire to recycle yarn.  I truly want to go unravel a sweater or two.  Just seeing her work makes me smile.
So how about you?  Does the winter cold keep you inside?  Perfect for crafting then, I'd say.

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