It's been cold but not that bad for me. We finally had snow on Tuesday but it didn't stick around. Further northwest, in
Mom got her second 8-shaft Ashford table loom on Monday and has been busily working on her first, "Leftover Red Wool" project. All yarns used in this project are thrums and other leftovers from past projects, and not only has this been a fast, inexpensive, risk-free project, but also a nostalgic one, every thread reminding her of the pieces she made, people she gifted them to, and in many cases, the two looms she's given away in preference for smaller, lighter ones. She's making two cushion covers. Mom also has two more projects planned, one a pink and blue cotton scarf with rectangular lace windows for herself, and a cashmere scarf for Mrs Suzuki, one of the women who helps her with housework.
Kathryn, for the idea.)
I've spoken to Mom and her students a little about different ways of looking at twill, of using eight shafts to create two or three blocks, and of using the entire width of a piece as one repeat of, you got it, twill threading, i.e. undulating and networked, but haven't made any tutorial handouts. Mom's classes are so casual it felt foreign to hand out pieces of paper. I may still get around to writing something for the Japanese blog, but we'll see. I've also consulted Mom on many possible projects using what cashmere she has; we cleaned and reorganized her equipment, books and magazines, and her notes; and we reorganized her silk chest. We have a big chest of drawers of her sample pieces to go. As for her wools and cottons, I suggested she continue to go through them with her students a few times a year so they can put dibs or keep them in mind for future projects. They have such fun doing it anyway.
I've been trying to draw, but it's usually at the end of the day when we're watching the telly. Dad sits very still so he's easy to draw, but Mom keeps working until she goes to bed so I don't have any of her yet. I brought my tiny book on Italian but haven't touched it since I got it out of my pack. I've been having fun at art supply and stationary shops, though not so much in bookshops. Cost of living in Japan started to go down about the time Ben and I left Japan, (1994) and every time I came home I went crazy shopping in these places, but inflation since the earthquake two years ago has gone insane, and I notice that most markedly in book prices. As well, things have gotten smaller; for e.g. I found stationary/letter papers as small as a business card, with matching envelopes, as well as twice that size. These things were always available, but at times I feel hard pressed to find anything of "normal" sizes. This goes from toys to cars to food, and I, at 145cm, feel like a giant sometimes.
Oh, Heather, Jane and Julie are keeping me company, too.I'm sorry we haven't been anywhere interesting.