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I just read that Tom Hanks is going to play Mr. Rogers in a movie. Perfect choice. I love Tom Hanks and love Mr. Rogers.

Coincidentally, I uploaded this video a couple of days ago, (thank Lux) because I found it to be so uplifting, but also showed me what a treasure Mr. Rogers was. I never watched his show as a child (he came along when I was “too old” for his show). ¬†He is easy to parody, but behind his simple, soft, and trustworthy delivery is a real message that never gets old, and is appropriate for young and old. Hope you enjoy the embedded YouTube video. Powerful, heart-breaking, but ultimately affirming.

Crochet and embroidery: Working on a couple of challenging projects. For the DVAC art auction, I am once again experimenting with empty spaces and shapes. Using Habu stainless steel yarn along with a super-fine kid merino. Light and airy, but a bit of challenge at this point. My original idea of attaching vintage velvet swatches is not working. The velvet was a brighter color of gold than I expected, and it just looks too “heavy” for the empty spaces of steel wool. On to plan B–I just need to come up with plan B. I do like the way the stainless steel and kid merino looks raggedy and spider-webby.

I also got inspired by Sue Stone and her sons at TextileArtist.org. If you haven’t checked out their site and are interested in the art of fabrics, thread, yarn, etc, it’s well worth your time. Anyway, Sue has a system for practicing a few basic embroidery stitches everyday, mastering these stitches, and eventually using these few basic stitches to make some amazing art. She and others do this well. So, feeling overly confident and energized¬†(a little whiskey and music from the 70s didn’t hurt either!), I decided to go straight to a finished piece without the daily practice routine. Mistake #1.

 

Here’s the result of working with a plain, white hat I crocheted with an acrylic boucle yarn. It’s not bad–I kind of like the “primitive” look–but there are definitely a couple of things that might have gone better with a little more practice under my belt. I like how the heart turned out (the red background was scribbled on with a giant red Sharpie), but the text has been a challenge. Spacing is a consideration that sounds easier than it is. Getting the stitches even and relatively straight is very difficult on a piece of crocheted material. Your text also needs to fit the space you’ve allowed. The nubby surface of the yarn creates an irregular stitch no matter how accomplished you are–at least that’s what I’m telling myself. Using a Sharpie to create a background or other graphic effects holds a lot of potential. You can also spray the Sharpie areas with alcohol to make it run, which results in softer, blurred lines. Looking forward to more Sharpie experimentation.

Plan B: Just came up with Plan B for the DVAC art auction scarf. Since the title of the piece is “Renewal,” I’m using felt pieces in a sage green along with the black. Not sure if I will embroider the pieces first or what color of thread to use, but these empty space pieces should work pretty well. I’ll need to get busy on that tomorrow, since this piece is due on Saturday. It will be similar to a scarf I made last year for my DVAC trunk show.

 

As always, thanks for reading this. Keep creating. Your precious and unique artistic voice is needed in this crazy world, and I look forward to seeing what others are doing.

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