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Monthly Archives: February 2010

It may seem a bit odd, but I spent part of the weekend weaving for Africa. A local weaver wants things to take on a trip, to give away to folks who help her along the way. So some of us are weaving up bookmarks for her. A few hours of work and hopefully something that will help encourage somebody’s love of reading. That’s definitely worth my time!

“Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.” – Buddha


I’ve just done a quick test in the back yard, using some of the ideas Erin Algiere shared in the recent Denver Handmade Alliance workshop. And yes, she knows product photography very well. Woven things are often difficult to photograph because, like jewelry, they don’t always react to light sources the way you want.

Using the natural light of today’s overcast day (snow in the forecast for the next three days), I was able to get a more even distribution of light across the scarves. Much easier than trying to get an indoor light to cast evenly over the woven design. Make your focus the product itself, and don’t make the background too distracting. Wally II (from the same junk shop as Wally) looks fairly dapper in this silk, cashmere, and wool stripy scarf (more orphan yarn). The scarf even matches the weathered back fence pretty well, which isn’t that great for contrast. Obviously I have much more to learn about product photography!

“A cloudy day is no match for a sunny disposition.” – William Arthur Ward

Hanging product on the back fence? Using your bathroom lights for your light source? Photographing shiny stuff? Get some tips by looking at photography books, steal ideas from those glossy catalogs, or ask somebody who knows. Try something, see what works and what doesn’t, then try again.

We were both lucky enough to attend the nearly-free Denver Handmade Alliance workshop “Photography is Your Friend!” this week. Photographer Erin Algiere, , graciously donated her time to a room filled with talented local crafters. And all of us wants/needs a little help with product photography! Fortunately for us Denverites Erin is funny, enthusiastic, and willing to share what she’s learned.

DHA will be hosting more of these workshops in the future, and they’re looking for folks who are willing to share their knowledge with others. If you have a helpful skill to offer your fellow crafters, consider doing a workshop for your local crafting group. If you’re in the Denver Metro Area, contact the Denver Handmade Alliance at

“Wise teachers create an environment that encourages students to teach themselves.” – Leonard Roy Frank

It is remarkably overcast and cold today, which means we’ve gotten spoiled with the blue skies lately.  The candles lit for Saint/Goddess Brigid didn’t have the desired effect because winter is here to stay.  A perfect day to huddle up with yarn or fabric, in anticipation of tomorrow’s big game. Or run out to the shops and get the crafting supplies you need if you plan to eschew (Word of the Day) the game tomorrow.  Because of the cold, I’m going to work on a friend’s Christmas stocking (her dog ate hers this year) and think of cold holidays.

I’m still puzzling over the banana silk scarf, which has a great drape and shine but horrid fringe. You can see Wally modeling it in this post.  The banana silk came from the very dangerous Fancy Tiger, , which has unusual fibers and an overall great shop. You just feel more creative when you’re standing inside Fancy Tiger.

I was also able to stop by Table Rock Lamas a few weeks ago,  , because I’m always willing to roam around a new fiber shop. Snagged some locally-raised, locally-spun llama yarn so will have to experiment with some of that soon!

“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”
Albert Einstein

We’ve just passed up the Feast of Saint Brigid (either a Catholic saint or a Celtic goddess or both).  She was known as a peacekeeper, craftswoman, weaver, and supporter of the common laborer.

In honor of her feast, I’ve woven a quick Saint Brigid’s Cross of the weavings I’ve done in the last few weeks. Saint Brigid’s Flame is used by many as a guide to their future endeavors, to light their paths with hope, and to usher in the Spring.   Since Phil just saw his shadow, consider lighting a candle to Saint Brigid and see if she’ll intercede.

“Love must be as much a light, as it is a flame.” – Henry David Thoreau