Sunday, November 28, 2010

Special orders

I don't take special orders. I haven't for years, probably at least since I've lived in Arkansas. I used to - but found they were so stressful and time-consuming that they didn't make sense. I am a perfectionist in my arts and a people-pleaser and I would fret too much trying to make sure that an ordered item was perfectly what the person wanted.

I still get requesst for special orders. At least a few times during Studio Tour and each show people will ask and I reply, "I don't do orders, but I will take inspiration. Tell me what you're looking for, and in the next year or two I might get it made. Check back at next year's show."

Some people aren't happy with that answer, but I pretty much stick to it. Special orders are too much stress.

Vest woven from Mr. Bones fleece
However, every once in a while, one gets through. A man called me this summer, wanting a vest for his wife. I make very few vests, they are a lot of work. Wonderful, warm, comfy and easy to wear, but a lot of work to make. I explained that I don't do orders and we had a nice chat on the phone. He has called several times this year, always polite and friendly and we have nice visits. His wife's vest is almost done and I'll drop it in the mail tomorrow.

I resist doing the vests because of the amount of work involved. Of course, there's the whole sheep care and wool shearing, loom warping, weaving and felting processes involved in producing the fabric. that's the same a making a rug, just with slightly different dimensions.

Then there's challenge of cutting and stitching fabric that is 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick - I broke two needles last night and said a word that shocked Shawn. I did find it interesting that the needles broke before the yarn. I spin good yarn! Now I'm crocheting the edging on the front and the collar and I'll run it through a quick finishing wash.
Mr. Bones, who grew the wool for the vest above.

And then its outside to enjoy some sunshine and build a few quick shelters for the lower ranked dairy and angora goats before tonight's rain comes in. The hoop houses comfortably cover all the critters, but the lower status goats are not allowed into the shelter with the top ranked girls. Just how life is in the goat herd and no use fretting about it. With rain projected at 34-degrees, nobody needs to get wet.

1 comment:

jean lucas said...

Very, very pretty vest. It feels soft and warm just looking at the picture. I sympathize with the needle breaking problem. Am sewing a project with very thick material and have broken 4 needles.