Monday, September 29, 2008

Strange Folk Festival

Pictured above is my nearly-assembled tent on day one of Strange Folk. The weather was beautiful, and everyone I talked to was in a great mood. I felt like I was among my kind of people all weekend, which was a real boost to the spirits after a long week of preparations for the show.

I'm especially grateful that the weather beckoned people to the park because the sales I made exceeded all my expectations and most daring hopes.

Thanks to every one who stopped by to introduce themselves!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Sunday Morning

Sunday morning...
At last, I remembered to take my camera with me on a sojourn through the woods. The morning haze was lifting with the sun as I headed out the door.
We live one mile from the eastern perimeter of Cuivre River State Park, which offers many trails to choose from.
There is newer trail spur that leads to a parcel of land, which I'm told was donated by a family who spent summers in the area until a decade ago. This spot overlooks a lake filled with jumping fish.
Picnic shelters in varying states of decay are sprinkled across the little peninsula, as well as a bathhouse and garage. It's intriguing, and a little spooky, to visit the remnants of their summer place.
A few more photos can be seen on my Flickr account:

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Price Tags

Pricing is one aspect of craft life that I do not relish. Figuring costs and margin of profit, labeling, and book keeping tasks should appeal to my desire to keep things neat and organized, but no such luck.

I am happy with my tags, however. Jelene created my logo. Sweetpaperie made my stamp, and the oval shapes are courtesy of a die cut and a young friend's assistance. The heavy, textured paper came from a garage sale about 7 years ago. At the time I didn't know what I'd use it for, but I just had to buy 1000 sheets of interesting paper for two bucks!

Next, I need to start cutting string and affixing tags to merchandise, as well as marking prices on the back of the tags.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Vendor Tent Layout

Today I worked on arranging my vendor tent for Strange Folk, which is next weekend.

I settled on an L-shape for the tables, although the other pieces turn the booth into a U-design anyway.

White table cloths with a blue underlayer will hide my tote boxes beneath the tables, which will stand six inches taller thanks to some heavy, wooden blocks.

I could do without the makeshift walls, but I think I'll keep them and make both sides white for the sake of light and continuity. Since it's a two day event, items may be a bit more secure with walls. I have some curtains to hang on each of the front corners that will really pull the look together as well. Overnight dew concerns me a bit, so I'll either use tarps, or stow my merchandise in plastic tubs at the end of the first day.

Last week, I did a display-by-display trial set up of inventory so that I have a rough idea of what will fit where. It's going to look great!

It was initially defeating to discover that I cannot put the tent up alone, but it's not something I need to worry about after all. My husband casually mentioned that he has planned to rise early and follow me on the 90 mile drive to help me set up on Saturday morning all along. (What a guy --one for all and all for one!) Now I just need good weather...

More pictures at

I welcome your ideas for improving my booth; please offer suggestions.

Next week: photos of the booth on site and fully decked out.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Pride and Joy

This little guy has begun to sound out words!

Monday, September 15, 2008

The Bloolights

These guys are very important to me. Collectively, they're The Bloolights, and they've been hanging out since they were 4 years old.

On lead vocals, and "like a brother" to my husband is a man who is kind, introspective, knows what he wants from life, and works tirelessly to achieve his goals.

The lyricist and guitarist sitting on the stool is my brother-in-law. He is unwaveringly true to himself... and to his daily routine. He loves telling stories and entertaining others, which makes him a great educator.

The drummer is my husband; a thoughtful, perceptive, inquisitive, intelligent, articulate humanist-- and the least annoying person on the planet!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Tent Prep

Sorry, no photos today. I've been toying with arrangements for an upcoming craft show, and haven't gotten it right just yet. I expected to wrangle with table placement and questions of height for display levels, but I didn't anticipate some of the other decisions I need to face. I've acquired more display items than necessary.

Now I need to winnow things down so that my space will look clean, but not sparse; full of inventory, but not junky or overwhelming. At my first show, a woman stopped and gazed at my booth for a long time. She said my space was an oasis for her eyes, restful after the cluttered appearance of others. That was the perfect compliment, and what I'm hoping to achieve again.

Monday, September 8, 2008

I can hardly believe it.

I finally made the leap. The deal was too good to be true, and only three miles from home!
Now, I just have to learn to thread the thing!
It's not often that I feel that luck is on my side, but I hit a jackpot this weekend! Thank you, CraigsList!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

A silver lining to the mortgage problems of the U.S.

I love my "neighborhood."
I live on an interesting road. Until recently, it was narrow and graveled. It runs from one winding, country road to another, with an unnavigable series of creek beds in the hollow between. Although one half mile of our road still looks like the photo above, the sections on either end have been undergoing changes.
Last year, one end of our road was paved, a farmhouse and barns razed, and the land somewhat leveled. Electricity and water pipes were laid for a development.
As you can see, all work stopped soon after, and has naturalized again.
When I take walks or go for a run, this hopeless sign makes me unspeakably happy. I know that someone is losing money on the land, but my family is greatly relieved to keep this end of the road looking like the pastures and horse grazing land we've known it to be.

Soon I'll take pictures of my end of the hollow.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Serger-hunting on Craig's List

I've been watching Craigslist, alert for bargains and dreams come true. There are new items to browse on a regular basis, but often they are a bit too far away, and a bit more than I want to pay. Until now.

I found a serger. It's in my zipcode! It's a Babylock ! It comes with a cabinet, manual, accessories, and thread! It "works great" It's only $100!

I haven't gotten to go and look at it yet, but I've read mostly good things about the 5280E online. Any additional advice (to buy, or not to buy and why) is welcome.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Looks like perfect camping weather

This is Klondike Park. Looks like a great spot to camp on Saturday, doesn't it? We're headed that way for a trail race, and I'm trying to talk the family into staying all day and camping.

The house needs cleaning and I could sure use some time at the sewing table, but my soul needs some outdoors, take it easy time.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


I admire the careful, awe-inspiring detail in the architecture and craftsmanship of classic church buildings. I know that a house of worship need not be extravagant, but it bothers me to see churches built in the form of metal pole-barns. Such buildings always looks cheap and inauthentic.There's a cycling blog I keep up with, written by a St. Louis man who is out on a two-wheel tour of America. I borrowed this photo from his blog because it's an example of how a new church ought to be built, and what it should mean. Don't you just wish you could go inside? I can hear the music spilling outside and echoing around the valley. I can see brides and grooms, as well as pall-bearers, exiting. I can see people stopping here to think.