Where Does the Time Go?

Posted by on May 10, 2019

Winter is finally over! Crocus in my garden that I planted twenty-five years ago.

Hard to believe that it’s already May! My track record for writing and publishing monthly blog entries for 2019, isn’t exactly working out to be a monthly thing! So much has happened since I last hit ‘publish’ way back in February. Here is the Coles Notes version, or does that reference date me? My boys tell me it’s now called Sparks Notes!

To start with, I have found an absolutely wonderful wire supplier for all my brass, copper and bronze wire that I use for my “jewellery for your knitting” that I am currently designing. Funny thing is, I was driving home from a trip to my local Business Depot and passed this building with the sign “Ferrier Wire” on it, that I had somehow never noticed before. I googled them and not only are they located about 15 minutes from my studio, they also have the most interesting assortment of wire in base metals. They fabricate their own woven “wire mesh” with the coolest onsite weaving machine I have EVER seen.

If you’re in the market for any kind of metal “screen” to use in architectural designs, give them a shout. They are responsible for the metal screening you see at the Air Canada Centre and in many of Toronto’s trendy restaurants. Mike Wiebeck and family, who own Ferrier Wire, are wonderful to work with and he was so interested in what I was doing with his wire that he recently did a Customer Profile about me on his website’s blog.

I’ve already used the wire I got from Ferrier Wire for several things:

Spring One of a Kind Artisan Competition Entry. Theme this year was “Fruit”. Brass & copper woven basket, with brass wire banana, copper wire apple and brass wire pear.

This is my entry in the Spring One of a Kind Competition theme of “Fruit”. I decided to build my metal version of a “still life” of wire fruit in a basket, as a reference to the common subject of the realist painters. I had a blast recalling my “twining” basket-making skills I learned in my Grade six applied arts class. You just NEVER know when you’ll call upon another craft skill. Being a crafty kid pays off!

Medium-sized Copper Scarf Ring for use with fingering yarn weight shawls. My original, smaller scarf ring versions are perfect with lace and sock-weight yarns.

As I move my way “up” yarn weight categories, I need to accommodate for thicker fibre fabrics. In the case of my Scarf Ring design, I accomplish that with thicker wire purchased from Ferrier Wire, and by turning larger diameter Scarf Rings in brass and copper. The one in the image above is made out of copper for fingering weight shawls, and retails for $200.00.

Large Coiled Safety Pin in action at the Toronto Knitters’ Frolic, located in Indigodragonfly’s booth on a shawl designed by Kim McBrien Evans called The Millcroft Shawl. Yes, it’s in my knitting queue!

And finally, my Ferrier Wire material discovery helped me achieve the Safety Pin design above. This is an example of my Coiled Safety Pin, which I make in a variety of sizes.

Which brings me to the other endeavour that has taken much of my time. My new YouTube Channel. I have now uploaded a 60-second video of me making the Coiled Safety Pins. It was used as a promotional video for the Toronto Knitters’ Frolic. Once you take a look, you will get a better understanding of how much work goes into each piece.

The video may only be 60 seconds, but it took us 10 days – on and off – to shoot, edit and upload to my channel. Go and give it a click, and if you feel so inclined, Like and Subscribe to my channel. I have plans to add more short “how things are made”, or “how to style your knitwear with my adornments” videos to give everyone a better idea of how much work goes into each piece I build by hand, and give you the tools to style your knitwear.

Knitters’ Frolic mock booth set up in my studio, showing off my new booth banners.

Talking about the Toronto Knitters’ Frolic, I had an amazing first experience as a vendor at their annual show. I designed new banners with the help of my good friend and colleague Sue McNenly. She is an amazing artist in her own right. But she also possesses great design and technical skills to produce “final art” for printed materials. I have great ideas, but lack the technical abilities to execute them, so I approached her to help me with her technical wizardry, and luckily she agreed. I would highly recommend her services. Here’s an example of what we did together. You should never underestimate the impact of great marketing and design to establish and promote your brand.

My Toronto Knitters’ Frolic booth display. What a great day!

And, as for exhibiting at The Frolic, what a great experience. Both the other vendors and visitors welcomed me with open arms and really “got” and understood all the “jewellery for your knitting” I was building. The clear design favourite at the show was any and all designs and sizes of Scarf Rings, followed by the Safety Pin designs. I am so looking forward to returning to the show next year.

Yet another new fibre event I am a part of this year. So looking forward to visiting Fenelon Falls. If you can believe it, I’ve never been there!

Next up, is the Kawartha Yarn and Fibre Festival on Saturday, June 8th in Fenelon Falls. Between now and then, you’ll find me in my studio making more scarf rings and safety pins, so I have a good selection to show in June.

Oh yes, and I will also be building jewellery for all my tourist retail locations across Canada to get them stocked up for their busy summer season.

And that, my friends, is where the time goes!!!!