Friday, 26 April 2013

A Basket's Tales

A short trilogy.

Part 1
We know the chap who made this basket. We most frequently see him in the company of other folk musicians at 'gatherings' hosted by my husband's cousin and partner in their beautiful old farmhouse. Just the right size for a small project, I bought this from Ted at a craft fair at Ellesmere.

Part 2
The basket is pictured on the desk top in our smallest bedroom - AKA my craft room. More about this in future posts. Suffice it to say that this desk has not been fit to show you for some while having disappeared under a miscellaneous heap of (mainly craft-related) stuff. Unable to use my work space, my activities have gradually colonised the entire house. Its a situation which I had allowed myself to accept - telling myself that I am too busy to take a break in making in order to improve things.

I am always envious of the work-space photos posted on other blogs. Some re-purposing furniture and storage, others modern and efficient, with many times the floor area which I have, and wonderful work stations. My allocated space may be small, but the light is good, the view is great and it was fitted out many years ago, by a local joiner, in order to get best use of a small space (which still has to fulfill the purpose of a spare room!). I just needed to 'see it' with fresh eyes, realise I was wasting a lovely opportunity, find time and Get ORGANISED!

Most of the space is not yet fit to show you, but the desk is usable so I feel I'm getting somewhere. The basket looks quite at home here.

Part 3
My stash of yarns has been distributed about the house - much of it in 'laundry' baskets in the conservatory, but other bundles in under-bed drawers, in top-of-the-wardrobe cupboards - intended for out-of-season clothes storage...... I think I have been a little afraid to admit, even to myself, how much I have. I have spent three days gathering it together and sorting it for more efficient storage. Recent purchases have been mostly natural fibers - wool, cotton, some linen, some silk blends, alpaca..... Some of it is from known brands, other hanks are hand-spun and/or hand-dyed and bought from fellow craft workers. Some has been bought as souvenirs from recent trips. When my children were young they didn't like the feel of wool or thought they didn't! The odd balls I have from that time are mostly mass-produced and synthetic fibers.

As with many 'improvements' we are coping with a period of increased chaos whilst I reallocate storage and try to discipline myself into 'clearing out' any unwanted items/supplies - clearly no such items exist but I have to reassure the rest of the family that I am serious about trying to find some! I have invested in many ( I would be embarrassed to admit how many) vacuum storage bags and yarn has been sorted into categories - suitable for wet felting, 'multi-coloured' and suitable for brooch backgrounds and other 'embellisher felt' projects, one or two (possibly 5 or 6 ish) bundles bought for garments for me ( I'll find time one day!), fancy (eyelash etc) yarn and then 'all the rest'. This last category is mainly of a lesser quality but too good to throw away. Almost all of this has now been stored in the 'magically shrinking' bags. It now all fits in the various laundry baskets - and the lids close!!

I have kept out three collections. The first is a mixture of odd balls, of 'double knit' thickness, of my 'lesser quality' yarn, in shades of blue, grey, yellow and white. I am knitting squares which will form a throw for the 'craft room' bed. Ted's basket holds a small selection of the yarn, and the squares knitted so far. I am part way through the tenth - I expect at least 10 x 10 so at least another 90 to go. More about the remaining two 'collections' in future posts. Here is the 'throw' so far:

In Conclusion
Once I have accepted that change is necessary and possible it will happen and, as improvements begin, the 'buzz' is great and enthusiasm grows. Time for me to move the basket from the desk and get on with some felting!