SAL

[Sorry this is late…I thought I had it scheduled for yesterday, but apparently I didn’t press the right buttons. 😩 ]

The last SAL was three weeks ago. I have to apologise for the skimpy post that is was. It was also the day when we Melbournians found that we were in for six weeks of strict Stage 4 restrictions. Not a good day for thinking about anything but what was ahead of us. I have written a post about it, if you would like to catch up. I won’t go into it here, because I want to concentrate on my work.

Lately I have been scraping acrylic paint onto brown paper, and then tearing it up. I found it makes the most wonderful rocks. I glued the strips onto paper, then I wondered about sewing them onto material. You can see that it works well, but but not a good as I would like. When sewing onto paper the paper moves more freely under the foot of the machine. However the material was gripped by the teeth, and only wanted to go in straight lines. I would prefer a more organic line.

Last time I showed you where I was up to ~ couching and random cross-stitching. The difference with the other piece I was working on was adding the material shapes under the embroidery.

Oh, another difference is that it is much smaller, so it is finished. Yay!

contemporary embroidery

I have pinned it onto a stretched canvas, to give a rough idea of the finished look.

I enjoyed it and am currently working on another ~ to show next time!

I am part of a group of stitchers that share their personal stitching work every three weeks. Go and have a look at the wonderful work that is being done all around the world. Everyone is doing something very different, but always interesting.

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Liminal time

Melbourne has been in Stage 4 lockdown for a few weeks now. Exercise once a day for a maximum of an hour; shopping for essentials once a day and only one person; only within a 5 km radius. And a curfew from 8:00 at night to 5:00 in the morning. Businesses have been severely curtailed, with only essential work to be carried out and workers needing a permit to show they are essential.

Mask-wearing has been mandatory for about a month, and most people are complying.

Our borders with NSW and South Australia are closed.

Fortunately these very strict measures seem to be bringing the numbers down, although our elderly in residential care have had a very tragic time. You might like to read my last post about our Elders.

And me? Thank you for asking! I feel that I have been doing this for ever, and indeed it has been a long time…..Day 47 today. My postcode was one of the hotspots that had to go into Stage 3 lockdown on 2nd July. A little over a week later there was a Melbourne wide Stage 3 order. Numbers weren’t coming down so Stage 4 restrictions were put in place. So 47 days of sheltering at home.

Even looking further back, there was never a time since the end of the first lockdown where I felt really comfortable being out ~ although I did have a chance to meet up with my Mum in June, and that was delightful. So I feel like I have been inside my house since mid-March.

It has been a very odd time. I am sure that every single one of us feels the same ~ this strange time, this between time. This liminal time.

Liminal time is a concept I have just come across, but to me it sums up this time so well, and in a strange way gives me consolation.

Liminality is the state of being between, being just on the verge of something, understanding that this time and place feels out of the normal. It is leaving the known, the familiar, but not being in the new.

Long haul air travel (remember that?!) is an example. Once you walk through the departure gates you experience liminal time, where the old has been left behind, but you haven’t arrived at the new, your destination. You are in a between time, way beyond your familiar.

Richard Rohr says it is “when you have left, or are about to leave the tried and true, but have not yet been able to replace it with anything else. It is when you are between your old comfort zone and any possible new answer.”

So the coronavirus has forced all of us to experience liminal time, even those who are not now in quarantine. We have been forced to let go of our old lives and plans, but we have no idea of what our ‘new normal’ will be like. What will the economy be like? Will there be jobs? Will there be my job? Will my lovely Melbourne ever be lively and bustling again? Will the familiar patterns still exist? Will we travel overseas again? Will we ever be free of this virus? Will we……? The questions go on, because we have no idea.

Our sense of time has changed. How often have we said “What day is it today?”? Time feels like wading through sand and yet skidding over the top of the waves. Even our language to measure time is different ~ when this is over; when we have flattened the curve; when we have slowed down the spread, when we are back at the footie/concert/ballet. Or, as I am doing, measuring the time as days sheltering at home, rather than the days on the calendar.

This in-between time is a very difficult time for many people. It is riddled with anxiety, uncertainty, an unsafe time. Someone I read said that maybe this is why humans have built extensive rituals around these times ~ rites of passage, the change of seasons, even things like 21st birthdays, and graduations. The rituals are often guided by the elders and done in the community. To use that very overworked phrase, these are unprecedented times and so we have no rituals to soothe us.

My experience though is a little different. I am not going to loose a job, or be evicted, or be forced into bankruptcy. At this stage everyone I love is safe and secure. I have a comfortable, warm house and I can shelter in place with lots of things to keep me occupied. I feel safe, even though my future is unknown, and unknowable.

But not always easy. It is a sombre time. It is winter here in Melbourne, so the cold, grey, still days have perfectly matched the time. It’s a quiet time and a reflective time, but an anxious time.

It seems to me that liminal time is not limbo. There is movement and change, we just can’t see the final outcome. Like the pupa stage of a butterfly’s life. Which is not to say that at the end of this there will be a beautiful butterfly. Life at the moment is a shit-show and what emerges from the pupa could be mean and ugly. Or beautiful. Or a mixture. All we can say is that it won’t be the same.

It is understanding that I am in this strange between time that anchors me. The familiar has become the unfamiliar and will turn into the unexpected. Strangely, knowing that gives me some comfort, which I think it comes from relinquishing control. All I can control is me, and even that requires some letting go. I am thinking of the shape of my future life, although, because I am in liminal time, it can only be the vaguest of outlines. However, to reach the end of this lockdown I have reduced my expectations of myself ~ things like finding comfort in creating, doing simple drawings and sewing, things that feel right; laughing every day; being in the fresh air; connecting with others. Celebrating making it to end of the day.

I hope you are doing okay in these times. Remember to ask for help if you are not. If you are interested in knowing more about liminal time, just ask Lord Google. You may even come across liminal space, spaces between, like stairwell and schools after everyone has gone. Those places that have an odd feel to them.

I also found this podcast with Alain de Botton really interesting and surprisingly positive. One of the things he talks about is ‘constructive pessimism’ ~ bringing our worst fears into the power of the light. Instead of saying “It will be okay” ask “Will I be able to get through this?”, “Will I be able to bear this?” and “Will I be able to endure the worst?”. The answers will probably be “Probably”.

Stay well, stay safe.

Our Elders

Indigenous Australians have a strong and proud relationship with their Elders. They are respected, deferred to and listened to. Elders are the custodians of their cultural knowledge, understanding Country and Ceremony, and far more than I presume to know. Way back at the beginning of the virus Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders were fierce in protecting their Elders, knowing how much would be lost if the virus got into communities. And, so far, they have been successful. That has to continue.

White Australians are not have not been successful. Despite the examples from overseas, despite the fact that before the virus we knew Aged Residential Care Services were vulnerable places for our elderly. Indeed last year a Royal Commission was set up to look the problems in the aged care sector; it is still investigating. Despite this we did not protect our elders. However, it is not those problems that I want to talk about.

I want to muse on our elders, and what we are loosing.

Now I am deliberately using lower case ‘e’, because we don’t look at our older people in the same way that Indigenous Australians do. We love our family members ~ our mothers and fathers, grandparents, great-grandparents, uncles, great-aunts ~ and are very fierce in making sure that they are safe and well cared for. We have sat and listened to their stories (and if we are honest, done a few eye rolls when we hear the same ones!) and built up a special and irreplaceable relationship with them. Quite possibly, as individuals we do see and respect them as Elders.

But as a generation? Does society regard them as Elders? Unfortunately that’s an easy one tho answer.

So, let me muse more widely, on this generation of 80 and 90 year olds, and how they built the Australia we know now. Maybe help create an understanding of why they are our Elders.

We righty spend a lot of time honouring our veterans and how their efforts shaped us, but we also need the stories of the women and men who stayed behind, who worked in the factories and on the land and taught in schools. We need the stories of the young lads who grew up in London during the Blitz, and those who lived in Greece under Nazi occupation. Or who fought the fascists in Italy or in the mountains of Serbia. Who survived labour and concentration camps.

When they came to Australia they combined with workers already here ~ a combination whose energy and labour fuelled the post-war boom. They worked on the Snowy Mountain Hydro Electricity Scheme, in car factories, in textile factories. They literally built the city ~ the oil refineries, the Westgate bridge, the new skyscrapers, the housing. In the country there were market gardeners and dairy farmers and sheep farmers. Let’s remember the huge range of businesses that took off.

Those coming from overseas forever changed our society. Food is the obvious first wave. We ‘Aussies’ learnt that coffee doesn’t come in tins, that cheese doesn’t come wrapped in foil and in a cardboard box (although I would argue that these blocks of Kraft cheese still make the best cheese on toast!) and that meals can be more exotic than meat and three veg. I remember my first encounter with an olive, the most unusual smell of parmesan cheese and my first taste of homemade sausages. We discovered places like Pellegrini’s, Lebanese House and Alyshas.

People from overseas made us look at ourselves, to realise that not everyone speaks English, that there are different ways to celebrate marriages and deaths, that there are different stories to tell, that we can adapt and change. That last one took time, as Australia has a deep vein of racism, and is still a work in progress.

This generation fought for our way of life ~ not in war, although they often did that too ~ but by demanding and fighting for rights. Unions membership was high and they fought for better pay and safer working conditions, and for societal concerns like universal healthcare. Women were demanding equal pay and more equality in their lives, lives beyond wife/mother roles. Indigenous Australians were fighting for a ‘Yes’ vote in a referendum for Aboriginal people to be included in the census. Australians overwhelmingly voted “Yes”. Aboriginal stockmen walked off Wave Hill Station as a protest against wages and conditions, beginning the Land Rights Movement, their cause strongly supported by the union movement around the country. The working class, a proud mix of old and new Australians, was instrumental in helping us find a new and more progressive voice.

So these are our Elders, who hold the stories and the wisdom of these post-war years. But they also have the knowledge of how to grow a fantastic tomato without the need for pesticides, the knowledge of how to make do and the wisdom of how to get through tough times.

It is inevitable that our Elders will die, however the coronavirus is making the dying more traumatic for everyone. We need to listen to the stories they have to tell, but we also need, as a society, to venerate our Elders, to show respect for their knowledge, as well as love. To treat them with dignity.

SAL

I have begun a new work for this Stitch-A-Long.

It is based on my memories of the bluffs that rise from the bush. Only memories, as I want to make it as abstract as possible. When I look at photos I see the details, and want to try to recreate them.

Original drawing

Then I experimented with sewing paper onto the material. It worked! There was the bluff.

Remember the couching and the sewing I did on the last work for this SAL? I am using the same idea for this piece.

I am going to enjoy doing the random stitching over the couched threads. There is a lot less to cover, so it will be quicker than the last one!

This Stitch-A-Long is for personal stitching projects. There are lots of interesting works to look at….just follow the links below. Thanks to Avis for organising us each three weeks.

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This is where I stand

I was shocked and angered to see the casual murder of George Floyd, the chilling mockery of the protest stance of ‘taking a knee’. From that moment the United States erupted. I am, of course, looking from the outside and don’t pretend to understand the broad outlines much less any finer details of the protests.

However, I do understand that a great wrong has been committed, not just this instance, but many, many times over. I understand the demands for justice and the demands to create a world where racism cannot rear its head. My heart soars when I see so many people marching together to demand change. (I also worry about the spread of the coronavirus, but let’s put that to one side.)

I found Ryan Holiday‘s latest article to be very profound.

“I’ll say it again: Not being extrajudicially murdered is not a privilege, it’s not an “exception,” it’s more than a tragedy. To try to categorize it as those things is to woefully fail to describe the injustice that is being done in modern America (and elsewhere). Callous indifference to suffering by the authorities towards minorities or the poor or the voiceless is not just a lamentable fact of modern life, it’s an active crime. “

In this post Jeff, from On the Fence Voters, writes another powerful piece. It ends with a list of about 30 things that, because of his privileged white skin, he can do while African Americans have been killed doing. Simple, daily things like shopping at Walmart, reading a book in a car or go jogging.

Of course no one can predict where this is going, and how it will end. We can see that this maelstrom this perfect storm of events creates will alter the world. To me there are some small indications that it is going to be wider and stronger than just the current protests.

For instance, bus drivers in Minneapolis refused to be commandeered by the police to take arrested protestors to police stations. Hundreds of unionists ~ teachers, postal workers, health workers, hotel workers ~ have signed a petition pledging that they will not assist the police during the protests.

As an Etsy seller I received a strongly worded letter from the CEO, Josh Silverman. Part of it read:

“We stand against police brutality in all forms.

We stand against a criminal justice system that disproportionately targets Black Americans.

We stand against the widespread disenfranchisement of Black and Brown communities whose voices are silenced at the polls.”

In Australia Channel 10, a TV station not known for its progressive stance, displayed this statement on air:

‘We stand in solidarity with our black colleagues, storytellers and viewers in Australia and the world because #BlackLivesMatter.’

In Australia we cannot be smuggly complaisant either.

Racism and social injustice exists here. White Australia was built on the dispossession and genocide of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Peoples. We can’t say “Black lives matter in the USA” and ignore the black lives here that are being lost and abused. 432 Indigenous people have died in custody since 1991. There have been very few charges laid against officers involved in those deaths, and never a successful homicide prosecution. 432. We are far more familiar with the names of African Americans who died than we are with the names of our fellow Australians.

The deaths are the tip of systematic racism towards Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. Looking at any marker ~ life expectancy, education results, housing, employment, incarceration, etc, etc ~ you see that there is a marked difference between Indigenous Australians and non-Indigenous.

Change is not easy, but there are some points from which we can start.

  • Firstly, move Australia Day from January 26th to a date that is less traumatic to Indigenous Australians.
  • Secondly, let’s have a proper response to the Uluru statement from the Heart. It is a beautiful, thoughtful document, a document that should be prominent in all places. How powerful is this statement:

We seek constitutional reforms to empower our people and take a rightful place in our own country. When we have power over our destiny our children will flourish. They will walk in two worlds and their culture will be a gift to their country.

The Statement has three key elements for change ~ enshrining a First Nations Voice in the Constitution, the establishment of a Makarrata Commission to supervise agreements with Australian Governments and the Commission will also oversea a process of truth telling about colonisation. You can read more about it here.

This year has been such a tumultuous one. In Australia there has been searing drought, horrendous bushfires, floods and then the pandemic. For me the turmoil actually began six months earlier with my partner needing medical care. It is no wonder that we are all reeling, wondering how much more there is to absorb and how much more we can take.

However, let’s not loose sight of the incredible generosity and courage shown in every one of these happenings ~ from truck loads of hay to drought-stricken areas to millions of dollars donated from all parts of the world; from fire fighters to hospital workers risking their lives to protect others. In the protests we see hundreds of thousands coming together as well as the individual acts of courage where a person is protecting another from the police. And of course, the big one, the shut down the world endured to help save the lives of people more vulnerable than themselves, and often at high personal cost.

I do love a good quote, and this one from Howard Zinn is one of the best. I will leave the ending up to him:

”To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic.
It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty,
but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness.
What we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives.
If we see only the worst, it destroys our capacity to do something.
If we remember those times and places — and there are so many —
where people have behaved magnificently, this gives us the energy to act, and at least the possibility of sending this spinning top of a world in a different direction.
And if we do act, in however small a way,
we don’t have to wait for some grand utopian future.
The future is an infinite succession of presents,
and to live now as we think human beings should live,
in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory.”

Coffee and cake

I am joining in with Meeks, inviting you for coffee and cake, cos we can’t meet up at the coffee shop.

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The cup is a very pretty one from my Mum, and the biscuit is quite delicious. It comes from Celia, her quarantine cookie recipe. It uses dried fruits and oats. Celia puts in chocolate chips, but I didn’t have any. Just as well, as these are quite dense, so don’t count the calories!

So what would I tell you while we ate biscuits and drank tea?

Firstly I would tell you way more than you want to know about the gelli printing and collage work I am doing. I am loving printing, making backgrounds and textures, chopping them up and pasting them on paper again. I actually wake up thinking about what I am going to work on!

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I might mention too that when footballers were asked what they are looking forward to doing again, many answered meeting friends in coffee shops and having brunch!

I am sure our conversation would have Covid news, because all conversations for the last six weeks have. A big part of today’s natter might be about whether to down load the Australian Government’s app to locate and trace people who have been exposed to the virus. After thinking hard about it I downloaded it, believing that helping to protect people is what all of this is about. I wonder whether you would have it on your phone?

Of course we would catch up with all the news from family and friends. That would probably lead on to a chat about how successful, or not, we have been with chatting on Zoom!

And before you go, I would tell you one of my pet peeves about washing my hands. Like everyone I happily wash them quite a few times a day. My peeve is that the sound of the water as I wash makes me want to go to the toilet….and then I need to wash them all over again!

Stay connected my friends. One day you will meet friends for coffee and cake.

A Bushfire A.B.C

On this day, when New South Wales and Queensland are facing catastrophic fire conditions, these are very wise words from my very wise friend (and talented author) about fire in Australia are a must read.

I am also thinking of EllaD and the GO. Stay safe.

Meeka's Mind

Photo courtesy http://www.wolaver.org/animals/ostrich.htm

I wasn’t going to write a bushfire post this year [2019] because I thought there was no need, not with the devastating fires in NSW and QLD to focus everyone’s thoughts. But I’ve just been on Twitter and seen some of the misconceptions about bushfires.

So…here are some basics:

Fire needs just two things to burn: fuel and oxygen. However the size of that fire depends on many things:

  • Dry fuel – makes a fire burn harder and faster. Fuel is made of up dry grass, leaves, small twigs and fallen branches that build up on the ground over time.
  • Low humidity – i.e. moisture in the air and soil – makes a fire burn harder and faster.
  • Strong winds – provide the oxygen to make a fire burn harder and faster. They also transport embers ahead of the main fire.
  • Embers – land on dry fuel…

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My heart is less heavy, thanks to you

Last time I wrote about the results of our federal election last weekend. My heart felt very heavy because the result was a loss for the environment, an election based on selfishness and fear. And my teapot broke.

There were swings to the Liberal Party (ie conservative), including, astoundingly, a large one in the seat of one Queensland member, who spent more time visiting his girlfriend in the Philippines, on tax payer money, than he did in the Parliament.

I wondered how my political thoughts were so out of kilter with the rest of Australia.

People like me, who want to protect the environment, equal rights, fight homophobia and racism and so on are described as

‘inner city, left leaning, latte sipping, tree hugging, chardonnay shiraz drinking tosspots’

Well, I wear all those labels (except tosspot!) with pride.

And I suspect that many of you proudly wear some of them too. The comments on my post heartened me. I might be living in an inner city silo, where my friends and family are as shocked and dismayed by the election results as I am, but I have discovered just how wide that silo is. It seems to stretch from Great Britain across Europe to the United States and many other places.

And maybe it is not a silo, maybe it is an umbrella, sheltering many of us from the hate and menace that seems to be around us. So thank you for sheltering under the umbrella with me, for leaving me comments and giving me hope that there are many of us who are longing for a better world.

And an update on the teapot……

The Fella and I bought a stainless steel one.

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No chipping this one’s spout. It is double hulled, so the tea stays toasty warm. And the Fella, as an old ex-boiler maker, has a long term love affair with stainless steel ~ and tea!

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Just a little advertisement before I go…..As you know I am heading to my artist in residency at the end of next week, so my Etsy shop will be closed for all of June. However, there is still time to put in an order, if something takes your fancy.

18 in 18

I’ve enjoyed this challenge because it has made me move out of the usual rut; it has brought options to the front of my mind. Having said that, I was surprised at the progress I have made in some areas. So, this is what I have been up to:

Write 18 letters

I am up to 13. Only 5 more to the end of the year. Should be able to manage that.

Sketch Outdoors 17 times

Another 13. Luckily I got outdoors to sketch during the recent trip to Menindee, in the Grampians, at Balranald and at the camping ground in Copi Hollow. I must remember to pack my sketchbook next time I am out and about….and then take it out and sketch!

Visit 16 different places

This hasn’t pushed me in the way that I thought it would. I wanted to extend myself to move away from the usual. I can tick off 12, and most of the recent ones are from the trip to Brisbane (Brisbane Museum, the Town Hall) and the Balranald Discovery Centre (there’s a good coffee shop there too). I haven’t pushed myself in Melbourne. So the next few months need to be full of interesting adventures. The most interesting of the recent crop was to visit General McArthur’s suite of offices in Brisbane. It was his headquarters in WW2, and full of fascinating information about him, and Brisbane during the war. Worth a visit if you are headed that way.

Upload 15 paintings to Etsy

I was in a hiatus for quite a while with listing new things in the shop. I was making decisions about the website, and wondering whether I was going to keep the shop or sell via the website. There wasn’t a lot of activity, and so I wasn’t motivated to list. Of course we all know that activity begets activity, so not listing helped that spiral. But that’s a thought for another day. I made the decision, which maybe only medium term, to keep the store and link from the website to the shop.

Recently I have listed

and there are more in the pipeline. That’s 8 for the year.

[If you would like to keep up with what I am putting into the shop, and sometimes being the first to know, you can simply sign up for the letter from my studio. It’s free, and you even get a feather drawing.]

Walked in 14 different places

I walk every day, and even the familiar walks are interesting and constantly showing me new things. However I enjoy walking in different places too. So far I have chalked up 11 different places.

One of these was a bit of a mistake. The Fella recently bought a new car, with all the bells and whistles, including a sat nav. Not something we have used before. We were heading off to walk in the Werribee Gorge, so I put the info into the sat nav and followed instructions. We were bemused when it took us out along the Ballarat Road to Bacchus Marsh, quite a few kilometres away from Werribee. I had plunged in ‘West Werribee Gorge’, not realising I had other options. Not to worry, we still had a nice walk in the bush, and I am still to walk in the Werribee Gorge!

Go to watch 13 movies 

Up to 11! Yay!

Since I last wrote I have seen:

  • I am Tonya
  • Finding their feet
  • Death of Stalin
  • Eulogy
  • The seagull
  • and watched Brooklyn on TV

Visited 12 galleries

7 galleries so far, with a couple of ones in Brisbane. Their art gallery is a very fine one. They have ranged from a quilt exhibition in Lilydale, way out to the east of me in Melbourne, through an inner suburban one showing John Wolseley’s sublime work, to a small gallery in West Footscray (much closer to me!) exhibiting Jessie Deane’s meticulous tapestries.

Plant 11 native plants

Languishing, I am afraid. Only two planted for the year. Maybe this spring…….

Read 10 biographies or memoirs

Another one that is languishing ~ only 4. It’s not that I don’t read, it’s that I haven’t been thinking about choosing memoirs from the library. The last one was Ann Patchett’s “This is the story of a happy marriage”.

Find 9 different styles/pieces of music

6 out of 9…not bad.

Two of the latest ones are from concerts organised by my sister. (I often mention the upcoming concerts in the letter from my studio. 😉) Michael Kieran Harvey played some wonderful piano music, including a piece composed by Eve Duncan. I was delighted by the compositions of Calvin Bowman (who is playing at the next concert), especially the ones of Walter de la Mare’s poems. They touched a chord!

Bake 8 cakes or biscuits

This wasn’t the best choice, as I have been trying to keep away from sugary things! Only 2 cakes. Not sure if that is a good or a bad result! I’m going to bake this weekend….and give it away ☺️.

Paint with other people 7 times

Still sitting on 2 too. Life gets so busy for all of us.

Clean out 6 cupboards or drawers

I am slowly working my way through the boxes of books I had in storage. It’s a slow process, as I want to reread many of them before I make the decision to keep or throw! But, aside from that, which I am not counting, I have cleaned the mantlepiece in the studio, sorted out and organised my paintings and sorted my summer clothes. Halfway there, but sooooo much more I could attack!

Make 5 things for other people

Tick off 4!! Since last time I have made beeswax wraps with Mary, crocheted a rug to give to the old folks’ home and crocheted a rug for Gerry. I may even over-achieve on this one!

Have 4 short trips away

3 out of 4, so on track, but nothing since I wrote last.

Make 3 garments

1 out of the 3. In May I knitted a tunic top for myself. I was so determined to make it work that I pulled it out and reknitted it. Can I count it as two garments 😄 ?

And I have some material to make up a dress, which I am looking forward to creating next week. So next time I write I will have two made…..well, if all goes according to plan.

Go for 2 long trips

✔️ Big tick for this one, as I have been on two, to Brisbane with my Mum in August, and caravanning with the Fella over September. Go Me!!

Have one Exhibition Create a website

Yep, I changed this one. Both are designed to showcase my art, and to sell, of course. It made sense to me to change.

The website has been up and running for a month or two now. Jump over and check it out. Or jump over to let the Google bots know there is activity on the site 😘. The more clicks and searches the better. I am blogging there as well as here, but the posts are different. I’ll explain more in another post.

It’s a work in progress, and always be. Static sites are not good. But I can proclaim it as something that I have achieved this year.

What’s your biggest achievement so far?

So, overall scorecard? Going well, with a few more adventures to come over the next few months.

Remember, to find out more about my art work, sign up for the letter from my studio.

 

Celebratory Giveaway!!!

For those of us who sell our creations, on Etsy or elsewhere, we know how exciting sales are. Dawn, who sells the most wonderful jewellery, is celebrating her 300th customer (!) with a giveaway. Isn’t that an amazing milestone? Admire her work, and maybe win one of her lovely pieces.

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I can’t really believe this happened – I have had my 300th customer on Etsy. Not my 300th sale – 300 people from all over the globe – that I didn’t know – have chosen to pay me for something I made.

I hoped I’d be able to make some sales, and I hoped to cover the start up costs incurred with a new business, but I didn’t really expect it to happen, especially as I haven’t done any of the things that people said I should – craft fairs, paid adverts on social media, traditional advertising, loss leaders, sales, coupons and the like.

I want to thank all the people who have supported me so far, so I’m running a giveaway.

Here’s how it’s going to work.

“You’ll be able to pick any one of these items, all of which are currently listed for sale in my Etsy shop*…

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