Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Thank You

2014 was very good to Cariboo Handwoven and me, with record sales and a lot of interest in my work. I have many people to thank:

  • Friends and others who were interested, caring and supportive, regardless of whether or not any sales were involved. Studio visitors were often very intrigued with my looms, my handmade blanket racks, and the big, bright space I'm fortunate to use. That all meant a lot to me. 
  • All those who purchased a Cariboo Handwoven blanket, towel or scarf. 
  • Blog readers who brought my page views up to 8,506 by the time I posted this blog at the end of the year.
  • The Station House Gallery in Williams Lake, BC for hosting "To Drive the Cold Winter Away" in November, and Joan Beck as my enthusiastic artistic partner in the show.
  • Pat, my husband, for making me three blanket racks and a new blanket tree, and teaching me how to better understand and use his first digital SLR camera for better photographs of my work. Pat is also very supportive and encouraging whenever I steer away from my favourite earthy browns and greys and use brighter colours. :-)
  • And last but certainly not least: Alison, my sister in Ottawa, who has been instrumental in another successful year. Along with her cousin-in-law, Elsie, she has done a lot of one-on-one promotion, Facebook posts, lugging, displaying, standing, hosting, banking and more. 

I began 2014 with a good supply of blankets, towels and scarves, and then added to it during the year through new projects. I'm now down to some nice wool blankets, what's left of the latest set of hemmed cotton blankets, and a few bath towels but no hand towels. This is an important milestone for me, and it means that my work will be even more tailored to what is wanted on top of what I want to make.

I can't forget 2014. All the lovely feedback about how much you enjoy your blanket, or how great your towels look and how long they last, or how well a scarf was received as a gift - that's what really matters to me most. The business part all comes after that.

So whatever your part in my enjoyable and successful 2014 ... thank you. I'm wishing you a great 2015!

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Blankets in New Homes

The festive season created a lovely flurry of orders and studio visitors through the last month or so. And now the feedback is coming in. Here are three reasons why I love to weave.

First, a buyer at the Medieval Market in November took home my 11th and latest Wenger blanket that includes about 50% handspun Romney wool from the Wenger Sheep Farm on Fox Mountain, just north of Williams Lake. The weave structure is narrow columns of tiny herringbones, and the blanket is thick and soft.

Here's what the blanket owner wrote to me:
... I wanted to check with you as to whether putting it up as a wall hanging is advisable. Would you recommend that and what would be the best way to do that?  I worry about stretching and definitely do not want to do anything damaging.  ... There is something so tactile about this blanket that speaks to me of everything that went into it. It is really quite meditative and grounding so I want to keep it in safe reach.
I have extra dowels for hanging and plan to give her one for this blanket.

#2, I made this cotton blanket for a special person in her favourite blues.

And she said:
I love wrapping up with it for a snooze or when I am feeling a chill :)

And third, a friend of a friend on Vancouver Island contacted me in November, and we had an enjoyable exchange of emails that led to her order of a Shetland wool blanket for her father-in-law.

The colours are earthy browns and greys with a distinct and complementary reddish-brown. It's kind of a masculine blanket and I was really pleased to hear this back from her:

We want to let you know that the woven blanket we gave as a gift was such a hit. My father-in-law said it was the best gift he could receive and I know he meant it! Thank you again for your superb handwork.

The business of Cariboo Handwoven is enjoyable and all that, but the feedback itself is the best. Thank you!

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Big Cotton Blankets - Part 2

Here's the second part of my new cotton blankets after posting three blankets on Dec. 11.  This blog is missing one blanket because it left my studio the day I pressed and labeled it. (I never had a chance to photograph it, but I know where to find it after Christmas!)

C182 | 100% cotton | 175 cm x 137 cm (69" x 54") | Sold

C184 | 100% cotton | 188 cm x 135 cm (74" x 53") | Fringed | Sold

C185 | 100% cotton | 155 cm x 135 cm (61" x 53") | Sold

Feel free to contact me if you're interested in these blankets - or any others.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Big Cotton Blankets - Part 1

A new set of big cotton blankets is ready to go, and here are the first three. They all consist of intriguing blends of different colours that work beautifully together. Overall, I'm very pleased with the effect.

All blankets are 100% cotton, and machine wash and dry if hemmed. (Fringed ones will be posted later; all of these are hemmed.) Cotton blankets are great for people who aren't crazy about wool, and for everyone in milder climates or during warmer times of the year in Canada.

C179 | 100% cotton | 183 cm x 135 cm (72" x 53") | Sold

C181 | 100% cotton | 162 cm x 135 cm (64" x 53") | Sold

C183 | 100% cotton | 168 cm x 135 cm (66" x 53") | Sold
Wide stripes of diamonds in graduated shades of blues and purples

As always, feel free to contact me if you're interested in any of these blankets.