Monday, July 27, 2009

Summer Art Tour Postscript

The Summer Northwoods Art Tour is over, and I am resting today and making notes of ideas for the Fall Tour. I've also been thinking back to so many wonderful conversations I had with visitors to my weaving studio.

There were people who had never seen looms or a Swedish drawloom before, and no one had ever seen a sock machine until they day they visited here. Three weavers, visiting at different times, came to visit the studio and had questions about their looms and were looking for advice. One woman who stopped by does bobbin lace, tatting, and conducts orchestras at Broadway plays in NYC! It was great visiting with each of them, and I'm already looking forward to the fall tour.

The first thing visitors notice when walking through the door is the unique log home we live in, built by Joe Hovel. Stripped tree trunks hold the upstairs, upstairs; branches support shelves, and everything, EVERYTHING is wood, all ceilings, walls, and floors. Many also noticed the rosemaled plates in my studio, that I painted close to 25 years ago.


I had basically left everything where it usually is, countermarche loom in front of the window, now set up for weaving rag rugs. When I finish this post, I'll be back working on that first rug. Luke, 12 years old, gave this loom a try and put in three or four rows of sheeting strip. He has borrowed two of my Harrisville frame (lap) looms to give weaving a try this summer.

When I make socks, I always set up between the two looms, as in the photo above, so lights can be plugged in nearby, and a loom bench is handy for cones of yarns. Everyone enjoyed seeing and hearing about the looms, and were fascinated with the sock machine. Several sock knitters (who knit with circular or DPN) went out the door muttering, "I have to get one of those sock machines."


The drawloom was almost ready to weave on, but I could only find 8 and 10 dent reeds that were not being used on other looms, so rather than re-sley and tie on again, I decided to leave the loom as is and order a 15 dent reed. Sara von Tresckow of Woolgatherers wrote last night the reed was packaged, addressed and ready to go this AM, I should have it Wednesday.


The Gallinger rug loom was placed in a corner, and the shelving unit full of sock yarns was pulled out to brighten things up with some color. The main purpose of this bit of rearranging was to give people more room to walk and move around in, and it worked well.

On Friday, all but two pairs of socks sold, and Saturday AM those last two went out the door. Four towels were purchased, too. Now I know to have a lot more socks made and ready, and I'll have more weaving on hand, too, in the fall.

"Art on Main" in Three Lakes, Aug. 9th is next, then "Art in the Yard" in Land O' Lakes, Sept. 19th, then the Fall Northwoods Art Tour, Oct. 2-4. These plus the gallery and online shop will keep me busy for awhile. Approximately 35+ of my brochures were taken by visitors, business cards, too, so there may be a few phone or email orders coming in. I don't have an exact count, but would estimate I had 65+ people here over the three days, which I'm told is very good for my first year on the tour.

In three days or so my weaving studio will again have "business" weaving as well as "personal" weaving (drawloom), both where I can learn, explore, try new ideas and techniques, and always do the best work I can. I'm looking forward to new adventures in weaving.


Keesha came home this morning and seems a bit tired from three days being boarded out. Keesha, like Kylie, came to us through a Keeshond rescue group when the family who owned her had a two year old daughter who was allergic and they had to find a new home for her. We are so happy she is now here with us. Happy, friendly, and a great watch dog, she barks a warning when anyone comes comes into the driveway or walks into our home. Today, Keesha occasionally gets up, walks around and whimpers, perhaps worried and wondering where Kylie is. There is no way to help her understand what happened, only love her even more.

3 comments:

TattingChic said...

Wow! Those are neat looms! That room is really cool, too!

Pigeon Road Pottery said...

Nice recap Jan. I am really glad you were happy with your first year on the tour. I think the fall weekend will be even better! Go, go go Girl!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful, Jan! So welcoming and inviting! I wouldn't have wanted to leave your place for the rest of the tour! :-)

LaVonne