Sunday, April 29, 2012

Happy Birthday to Me

Today is my birthday and therefore I will not be working today. Instead I give you a guest post by my friend Jeanne-Marie, whom you might remember from when I visited her in December.

I am a weaver. I have been for 18 years and I still can't get enough of trying new weave structures and weaving with new fibers. I will completely admit that I have cones of yarn in my loom room that I picked up because someday I would have the right project for it. Some of those projects have not yet happened. So the stash grows a little each year. I can't wait to see what it will all become and yet more keep sneaking in. I weave at least 1 hour each day. I do count winding the warp and dressing my looms, yes looms as part of that time. I have notes written to myself all over my room for those someday projects. I usually have at least two looms warped up at any time. I was once asked how I have the patience to warp my loom and weave. Randi Parkhurst answered that the best, " Creating is a joyful experience. A person requires no patience for pleasure". Weaving is my passion and my pleasure. It is what gets me centered and ready for whatever the day has to bring and it is what lets me relax at the end of a day. I draw my strength from that quiet time at my looms. I also use my looms to answer my curiosity on what would happen if...
I learned to spin with a drop spindle, not because I like spinning. I discovered that I like weaving with hand spun and so in order to supply my own demands, I spin. It is all about passion.

 Passions are things that sometimes define explanation and logic. We acted on them and sometimes they act on us. And every once and a while they bring people from very different places in life together to share what moves them.  I met Christian one snowy day and I did not know that day that she and I would have so much in common. It turns out that we both shared affection for medieval history but more important we had a stronger thread in common. Our love of fiber and creating with fiber. When I met her she was already a consummate spinner, with bags and bags of fleece and avid knitter.

  We got to know each other and found even though we were years apart in age our passions ran the same places. We talked about food, fiber, fiber arts and life. In a few short months from meeting her she had found a loom and we spent an evening getting it set up and warped.

 I have always been impressed with her skills. Once she sets her mind to create, like her mascot of the rabbit, she is off. She had her loom warped and was weaving projects in no time. She got very involved with our fiber guild. Sharing ideas and thoughts on various different classes and processes. Her enthusiasm is contagious. She wove, needle felted and presented a banner to our local fiber guild within a few short weeks of meeting us all. 

 We would share ideas, thoughts and patterns for weaving as much as we might share recipes. Her passion for learning and creating in all fiber arts is inspirational. Now states away, I still watch as she sets her mind to the next project. A mornings musing of "hey have you seen this" becomes later, "look what I figured out" and always while there are two or three other projects brewing. 

 I believe having a group that you can talk to or even one person who shares your passions can help you to broaden your expression. I probably would not have learned to spin without the gentle prodding from Christian. She encouraged me and then bought fiber for me to try. Oh how I remember that fiber. It was a silk/merino blend in black and white and was amazing to work with. All her fault. 
 She hunted for weaving structures through the library that I had started to build, copying and trying new things. I see her zeal for trying everything still follows her through in her yarn company and her line up of projects. 

Explore you passions, be inspired to try new things and create everyday. 
Happy Birthday Christian and thank you for being in this world and sharing your skills and passions.

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