Here is the third large tote, this one with black leather. These bags have screen printed pockets both outside and in. They are my current favourites. Large, strong and fun.
I made some new large totes of recycled leather and canvas on the weekend. We sourced some #10 and #6 canvas for canoes and bags last week. I like the strength of this weight of canvas for totes. The family has had a long love affair with canvas, starting with my husband who made his first sail for his ice boat when he was in Grade 12. The canvas came from Eaton’s–mail order to a small Ontario town–and his mother’s sewing machine was never the same.
Below is a fid, a sailor’s tool used in making sails, and I find it perfect for inserting into corners of the bags. This particular fid belonged to Jack Braidwood, a well-known Belleville sailor, and it accompanied him on his sail around the world in the 40’s. I love the smooth beauty of the conical shape–the wood is lignum vitae, one of the strongest woods available.
I also got some screen printing done on the weekend, linings and pockets.
Peruvian Images is finished. My very first rug Euclid, is of similar design. Both are from House of Price. Peruvian Images stayed in the cupboard for several years before I decided to start it last year. It is interesting to see the evolution. Euclid was hooked in 2006 on burlap, using #4 cut wool purchased at my first Annual in Lindsay in 2005. Peruvian Images is hooked on linen, with #5 cut and lots of textures, spot dyes and marblized wool, mostly of my own dyeing. Euclid is finer, more careful, more reserved. Peruvian Images is thicker and a bit riotous. Am I taking more risks these days? Maybe.
I have been making two sizes of new labels. I found a wonderful tutorial (just scroll down to August 13, 2o1o). I use white cotton for an inkjet printer by Jacquard that I purchased at Michael’s and Heat ‘nBond, which you can buy by the yard, for backing. The folded ones are for inserting into a seam. The larger ones are for sewing on to fabric or leather; the strip is ready to cut into individual labels as I need them. I find that the Heat’nBond keeps the cotton from fraying and is slightly sticky so helps them adhere. Once I come to terms with Adobe Illustrator, I will make some larger ones for my rugs — with all the required information. Stay tuned…
This wonderful Peruvian is from the Ayacucho region. I have had it on my computer forever, taking inspiration from the colours, geometric progression and whimsical insects. Here is where you can find more beauties.
I’m nearing the home stretch on Peruvian Images. I read some where a long time ago that you should whip your rug all round and save the corners for last. This may sound like torture, but the idea is that your corners are more likely to be symmetrical if they are done right after one another. It always takes me a bit to remember just how to mitre them!
I roll the backing towards the rug so there is no finishing after the whipping. This is always a relief at this stage–no tape, no hand sewing! I’ll take it off to the local cleaners to be steamed this week and then take a picture of the finished piece.
This is the reason for the trip to Toronto–my new walking foot machine. And it can walk through many many layers of leather. I’m just learning about all the adjustments, so taking it slowly. Below is my first project with my new machine.
I got this great remnant in Ottawa. I lined it with black leather from a pair of pants; the strap is made from another pair. Who would wear red leather pants??
And here is a new piece of Jenny Clark’s ceramics, also from the Toronto trip. I love her work. I first met her at the One of a Kind show several years ago, and have been collecting pieces ever since. They are so whimsical. I am using this for a spoon rest on the stove so I can look at it every day.
A lovely package arrived in the mail today from a lovely friend. What a surprise. Perfect gifts for a person who loves birds and wool. I can’t wait to hook with that delicious ball of colour. And Deanne’s thank you card is delightful.
I was in this city for a day and a half. I’ll post later what I bought! Even though it was cold (people were still wearing warm hats and mitts) I walked everywhere I could. Maybe next time I will bike. Yesterday was the opening day for the Bixi in Toronto. Surely a pedal in the right direction!
I hope that the empty stand means that people are renting and riding!
On Friday we went to the Picton Antique show in the Crystal Palace. I could not leave this charming handbag. (I made it as far as the car and then went back for it!) It has a long chain tucked inside to convert it to a shoulder bag. I hope it inspires me to make some great small bags myself. I certainly am buying enough thrift store leather!
Below are photos of the Crystal Palace. It has been lovingly restored, including the grand stand where citizens listened to Sir John A. Well-done Picton!