wire ... metal ... fibre .... unique handcrafted jewelry and accessories for men and women

Friday, March 27, 2009

the structured chaos of organised personal time

the cluttered chaos of organised personal time

Last night I switched off the computer, removed myself from the lure of the interwebs and the seduction of twitter ..... and Made Stuff. This follows on from my previous blog post kvetching about not having enough personal time over Spring Break.

I poured a good big goblet of red wine and the creativity flowed(?).

accomplished =

fuzzy felting batch of flotsams
  • a new pair of copper earrings
  • three flotsam wire and fibre items ready to be felted in today's batch of laundry
  • the prototype for a new flotsam wire and fibre design
  • set up some portable crafting projects for when I'm out and about
  • an inventory check of wire crochet for upcoming craft fairs and B&M's
  • prep for the promo items I need to make for the upcoming Got Craft! fair at the beginning of May

Once these housekeeping items were out of the way I then settled down to some real creating, something I've been 'itching' to do for a long time. I've been making wire beads for about a year now and using them in necklaces or as focal points. Recently I've started felting them (my beloved fuzzy balls!) but last night's project was a wee bit different.

I made a graduated set of fine silver wire beads and teamed them with some beautiful white agate to make a "purity" choker-length necklace. For some reason I gravitate towards pure white with the fine silver and the pieces always end up being "purity". Ho hum - makes sense to me I think.

purity choker - fine silver and white agate


Thursday, March 26, 2009

March 26th is Purple Day!

purples purse charm

Yes, March 26th is Purple Day! Wear your purple with pride and raise awareness for those living with epilepsy.

This is the second annual Purple Day run by the Canadian Epilepsy Alliance and was started by a nine year old girl from Nova Scotia, who herself deals with the condition on a daily basis.

So far I've twittered about it, I've blogged it and have had it published as my first article as a non-fiction content writer for my local neighbourhood website (please check out the links there for more info on dealing with epilepsy and first aid tips).

... and I've made myself a little purple ribbon on a pin to wear today to raise awareness and let others know that they are not alone.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

new balls please!

Spring must be around the corner. I suspect this not because the sun is peeking out from behind the many clouds but my studio got an impromptu clear out last week after I ranted at how messy my desk was.
So this morning (my child-free morning!) I'm starting things off with freshly brewed coffee, some new fuzzy balls to play with (not mr ebb btw, who is the only 'cloud' in my day since he's working from home!) and a blog post about how efficient I'm going to be today (ho hum - catch me on Twitter to see how I'm doing thru out the day).
First off is this blog post (ta da!) and then I'm going to pair the fuzzy balls with some beautiful fluorite beads and silver spacers to make another choker (I really like this length though I will lengthen on request!).
After that I have piles of admin to do.
Sometimes it's just not possible to portably craft 24/7 as the desk time catches up.
... and today is one of those days! le sigh

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

yarn bombing


I've never seen a yarn bombing ........ well, not until I visited Salt Spring Island this weekend on a knitting retreat.

Some amazingly creative knitters, under the cover of darkness no doubt, had decorated a planter in the main square with beautiful knitted tulips and gnomes. A notice ina nearby (decorated) tree informed onlookers of what they were seeing and reassured them that the "offending" graffiti would be removed soon.

We were told about it while shopping for supplies in the amazing Stitches Quilt Shop and trotted down the road for a peek. We weren't disappointed.

Yarn bombing aka knit graffiti has a history rooted in slow activism and a presence since 2005 (possibly earlier too). Knitting itself has been used as a tool to point out how fast-paced life is and that a simple act of handcrafting can instil some peace into the day. It's also a great feminist tool to illustrate how productive and creative women are in their everyday moments.

Although Germain Greer was dismissive of women's textile art (linked here) working with fibre is often an easy and portable craft to carry around during daily life. Readers of portable crafting for the obsessed will know that since discovering circular knitting needles I am rarely without a sock or scarf or whatever when out and about.

Only now I know that I'm being an activist!

Monday, March 16, 2009

retreat retreated

Well ........... we shopped (at Stitches in Ganges for some yarn and intriguing crafting supplies) and we drank (Kahlua and Yellow Tail, tho' not together!) and we dined out (someplace in Fulford Harbour but I forget the name - it was delish tho' & right beside the ferry terminal) and we saw a band (the Duhks from Winnipeg, oh my were they incredible) and we hot tubbed (Aidan's back yard) ........ and we even managed some knitting (late night so v v v tired now).

Then home via the ferry.
The boys survived (as did the fish, guinea pigs and cat).
Back to normal now.

Friday, March 13, 2009


whee! i'm off to Salt Spring Island for a girls' only knitting retreat. i'm foot passengering over on the ferry tomorrow so my knit kit will be well and truly portable.

will blog/twitter by cell so expect some odd communications as my cell service seems to duplicate every post and add unnecessary info to each post.

whee! holidays (the boys are looking after themselves at home alone!)!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

quick bread success

quick bread success, originally uploaded by ebbandflo_pomomama.

... and of course in order to successfully craft portably you must be able to tear yourself away from the household duties too!

Enter the bread machine! We have a Sunbeam model (another great Airmiles offer) which is chugging away at a loaf of french at this very moment. In all honestly I love kneading dough, watching it rise and knocking it back but the time is simply not there these days!

So far I've been fairly unadventurous with recipes, sticking to multigrain bread flour and the basic cycle. Further reading into the machine manual though introduced freshly kneaded pizza dough (no more putting off homemade pizza night!) and the ability to quickly whip up a batch of pretzel dough for the wee guy when he comes home from school (making pretzel worms and then eating them is a great after-school activity).

Today's featured loaf uses yet another program - the quick bread! ie. breads not made with yeast. These breads utilise baking powder and baking soda as raising agents, have a faster cycle in the machine and are generally best eaten the day of baking.

Cardamom and Flaxseed Bread
3 cups all purpose flour (i used a mixture of plain and wholemeal)
1/2 cups ground almonds
1/2 cups flaxseeds
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 and a half cups milk
1/4 cup veg oil
1/4 cup liquid honey
For bread machines, spray the bread pan with PAM then follow the advised order of wet and dry ingredients and set the machine to a quick bread (no yeast) cycle.
For regular baking mix the dry ingredients together, and the wet ingredients together then combine the two into a smooth batter. Pour into a greased and floured 9x5" loaf pan and bake at 350F for approximately 50 minutes.

Verdict = delicious, especially with herby cream cheese, butter or with soup. The cardamom flavour was delicate and improved overnight. Great but dense toast in the morning.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

portable mending

Not the most exciting of craft projects but the more you put it off, the bigger the pile of mending grows.
I guess my sewing box was my first portable crafting kit. I gathered it together when I first started sewing, under the inspiration of my mum and my grandmother's sewing baskets. They always seemed such amazing treasure troves. My grandmother had a beautiful vintage sewing box on legs so that it was at the right height for her working in a chair or at the table. My mother eventually had one of those expanding wooden boxes which eventually fell apart. My sewing kit accompanied to university when I left home and, under the influence of an enthusiastic flatmate, I took up dressmaking again.
My current sewing kit is a rather unromantic plastic tackle box but it suits just fine, is easily transported and holds everything readily together.
PS: Dolly is called Petrova, after one of the Fossils in Noel Streatfield's Ballet Shoes. Her clothes are on backwards because my previous mend put her head on backwards!! She's the last doll my mum made me. My sister has a matching ragdoll called Pauline (I think?).

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