Years ago, during my stint as a reader (my business cards read “psychic consultant” which sounded SO impressive) I needed something to fill in the day. I taught classes at night and did almost all of my reading and groups in the evening. I taught myself to quilt.
The first quilt I finished was pieced from Evening Star blocks made by my great-grandmother and great aunts and handed down to me through my grandmother and mother in 1988. They are all pieced from old clothes, mostly plaids and checks, in a muted pallet you would expect from the 1920s. That was not only my first quilt, it was the first one published too. If you have Great American Quilts, 1992, you can see a picture of it (and me 22 years younger). I went on with quilting (and dyeing fabric for quilts) up until our move to Canada in 2000. I was selling all of my “art” quilts at a local gallery, along with the antique quilts I had bought and sold since 1996. I was busy and didn’t do much quilting. I got out of the habit of it until we moved here in 2007 and I started and finished 4 quilts in quick succession. Let me tell you, I have enough quilts now. I went back to bed quilts and you really only need so many …………
In 2007, back here at home, I started making clothes. I needed them and couldn’t find any I liked. I’ve done that now up until last winter when a particular bit of silk velvet left me screaming in dismay. I haven’t had the urge to sew in a while – because I’m knitting.
In 2012 I found yarn again. At first I tried crochet and finished a shrug. I didn’t like it then any better than I’d liked the finished product back in the 70s. I looked at knitted patterns. I said to myself, you know how to cast on, knit and purl – surely following a pattern won’t be that hard ……… if you’ve read some of this blog you will know how hard I found it. I made two sweaters at the beginning that are tucked away in the sewing room to be ripped out – then I finished one. And I have one almost finished – waiting for me to knit the last 6″ of a 60″ collar and band ……….and then ……… I saw someone knitting socks on WP.
Socks. I love socks. I need socks. I’m totally smitten with sock knitting. I have pretty knitting needles that work beautifully. I love the patterns – I love the yarn. Another obsession has snuck up on me ……….
I’ve shopped for hand-dyed yarns, all the while staring at the pots of acid dye on a shelf in my kitchen. I’ve told DS and DH that shoot I could paint my own yarn with dyes. I have all of the necessary equipment. I’ve been dyeing fabrics off and on since I batiked my first piece of fabric in 1965. Oh yeah, I can do this. Undyed yarn is headed my way, even as I write ………… I bought a new roll of Saran wrap just for the yarn, along with a gallon of vinegar. I’m saving my plastic ice cream containers which are the right size for mixing dyes ……….. here we go again ……….
A couple of years ago, while needing to make money and still stay at home to take care of DH, I fixated on the possibility of hand-spinning yarn and dyeing it. I had visions of numerous sales in mind. Until I saw how many people are trying to sell handspun yarn on the internet. The population of New York City is smaller. I tried spinning on the wheel I could afford. It wasn’t a great wheel and I didn’t like it. But I’ve heard there are other ones. Like this …….
Ah the Majacraft Aura. Just what I need. I can visualize hours of spinning bliss using this wheel. I wish there were somewhere I could try it out ………. I think I would have to fly somewhere because I don’t think there’s a place in Maine that has them.
Spinning is an expensive little hobby,, yes siree. I would need fiber (of course), the wheel and all of its accessories and most of all, time. Time away from sock knitting.
My days have a routine. I visit my husband every two days at the nursing home which is in the country about 15 minutes or so from where I live. I get up, drink my coffee and browse the web. Then I get dressed and leave. I stay at the nursing home for an hour or so. I feed him if I get there at lunch. I talk to him – he doesn’t talk back because he can’t but he does communicate. I remain upbeat and perky. After an hour in 87 degree heat at the home, I leave and drive back to the house. It is mid-afternoon by that time and I’m tired. I eat lunch and relax. Sometimes I meditate and sometimes I read. Sometimes I just nap. And I do it all over again in two days.
So you will see, I don’t have a lot of time on visiting days in which to do things. I do knit at night on those days. I have those other two days in which to clean the house, shop for groceries, cook, knit, whatever. And now I’m adding yarn dyeing ……………. so when will I spin? I think I would have to have the wheel in the living room instead of the “spinning” room in order to get anything spun. Of course, first I would have to be able to afford the wheel ………………. it will take some saving. I wonder if DS minds not eating as much for a while???????????? I’m fine with donuts for breakfast and lunch and then maybe a bowl of cereal???? Somehow I don’t think he’ll agree ……….. although he’ll eat the donuts as a prequel to dinner.
I wonder how many people pray for help in NOT WANTING to start a new hobby?????????