Open Hands

Sometimes it takes me a while to really listen to what I’m hearing.

It turns out I really enjoy helping people spruce up and build their Squarespace sites. 

It is a fun, slippery puzzle to figure out how my clients want their websites to feel. How to help them get to that point. To give them an outside view from above, before diving in to pick out what’s the truest parts, to polish and shine the website until it reflects their message clearly. 

Websites are a big deal, they go deeper than social media, they give us a platform to dig deep into what makes us tick, what we want to share with the world.

I want to help you shine through your site, let’s get started.


Thank you so much for your invaluable work, time and love on my website!

Your intuitive guidance, gentle nudges, and skill gave me a website that I love, and that I would never have been able to put together myself.

Brandi

Harmony Farm


“I tend to ramble my creative genius all over the place in what I call off-road communication. Cat was able to raven within these rambles a clarity of my voice and my offerings. Her ability to hear the greater message in between the words of my truth and orchestrate an organization that made sense while retaining style. She really listens, and is incredibly fast when there's a task at hand. I am so grateful I took the plunge to get her help with my website. “

Nissa Howard

nissahoward.com

Fivers

People always ask how I get things done. "Five minutes here, five there" has be come my quick, truthful-yet-sarcastic answer. It got me thinking the other day. What can we accomplish in five minutes?

No- that's not right. 

Here's a better question: What can we start in five minutes, biting off little pieces until something is finished? 

You need two things to do this. 

A timer, and an activity.

That's it. Here are some things I do

Fivers

  • Doodles, it helps to have everything ready, notebook open, implements ready (currently on my desk, watercolors)
  • Stitches in art or to repair clothes
  • Sit still and breathe/meditate
  • Iron out fabric you remembered to pre-wash before cutting into (see also- prewash your fabric)
  • Trace a pattern (or just a few pieces of one)
  • Rinse cherries/seasonal fruit and enjoy slowly (this will take more than 5, depending on size of bowl/deliciousness of fruit)
  • Mix flour, water, starter so you can bake later
  • Dance
  • Fill/empty the dishwasher
  • Sweep the kitchen floor
  • Brain dump writing into notebook
  • Small exercise (Plank holds, movement, etc)

The beauty of a timer is that it takes the pressure off worrying about time.

One minute can feel like five, five like thirty, thirty like hours. There is only one rule: Do NOT check the timer. Just work up to the chimes, don’t stop unless it feels good to you. Trust the timer, it’ll go off, and yes, you can keep working. Or stop, and move on to other things.

Trust your choice.

Puzzling

I’ve been experimenting in patchwork lately. It started as a way to use as much of the off-cut fabric as possible from the garments I’ve been making. It’s a double waste to do nothing with hand dyed fabric. I also wanted to make a new round of ornaments.

And so, patchwork pretties were made. But I found myself quickly fascinated with the puzzling together of colors and shapes, the same pleasure as a puzzle, but without any reference image. (Click on the images to see them bigger, if you’d like to get a closer look.)

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They tie in closely to my watercolors and I have no idea what to do with the panels made so far, but have some ideas... I’d love to know what you’d do with them!

Last night

I’m sitting in the studio, listening to Shawn’s music as he reorganizes his massive record collection. I’m fighting a cold that’s trying to move into my head. Fidgit is pestering me on and off for affection, snuggle breaks are my favorite breaks. A scarf has been woven in a day. It feels good to have it off the loom, to have the loom empty, ready for a new project tomorrow, in the new year. 

Most of my work has been in patchwork these past weeks, well, that and a new pair of thick wooly socks. The patchwork is a puzzle with no picture. This medium reminds me of watercolors, moving color and shape around until it’s pleasing. Adding details and large swaths as needed, to keep things interesting. I am looking forward to where this path of sewing will take me, to see where it intersects with painting and everything else. 

Tonight is it for the year. The last night. I hope if finds you warm, safe, and content.  I hope you know when to rest, when to stoke the fire in your belly that drives you towards the truth. May the year be peaceful, and may you have the strength to carry your burdens, and to put them down when it’s right to.  

If you find yourself with different ‘new’ year anniversaries as the calendar year unfolds, give room for celebration, for quiet contemplation.  

May your year be happy, dear ones!

xo

cat

Reflecting on Reflections

I've been noticing and being distracted by reflections lately. A lot of the time, especially in my studio. Maybe it's the new layout, but the light popping off my iron or loom as they move keep catching my eye. It's the corner-of-the-eye stuff. There one second, gone the next. 

I'm not sure what this new noticing is about, but maybe I do, deep down. 

I'll be keeping my eyes open, I'm doing my best to pay attention.

How to wear the Karla Dress

any way you want to! But here are some of my favorite ways to wear mine!  

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With jeans

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Still chilly? Add a button up shirt or cardigan. This combination is one I'm going to be living in this autumn.

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Or just a button up (boots, sandals, sneakers, all of my shoes fit well with this dress)

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Leggings and a pullover! (another favorite combo!) 

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Just leggings, and a back view too

And here is how the fabric moves on you! 

Place (Sacred Space)

I'm newly embracing 'Writer' as part of my self-seen image. It all started when I submitted to Rachel's call for writing to support her thesis work. I pulled out some thoughts I had been playing around with, popped them into her form and hit send. Then I promptly forgot about it. 

Then she let me know my work was chosen to be included. So I sent her a title (after asking her to send back what I sent in- I had forgotten to save a copy!) and while I was tickled, I didn't know what to expect. I imagined the writing she collected would be printed and hung with her textile work, then taken down and tucked away. Or perhaps she'd compile them into a hand-made zine for the opening night. You know, nothing official, but still special.

Nope.

Dudes, I was wrong. She made a BOOK. It has a UPC code and an ISBN number and when I received it in the mail, I was gobsmacked. It was beyond  and totally surreal, to see my name in the table of contents, and see my words printed in a real book. It's called Place (Sacred Space) and it is beautiful.

It was the best surprise. 

The whole thing is thoughtfully pulled together, and I've been savoring the pages here and there. It's an honor to be included in such a collection.

If you'd like one for your own shelves, here's her site.

I borrowed these images from Rachel :) 

Kitchen Recovery

Now that the kitchen is ‘done’ (what home project is ever done- really?) I have found myself at the crossroads again. The one where I step towards the next big project.

This is how I seem to cycle when making- one BIG project studded with little side projects as I need mental breaks from Ol’ Biggun.

During the Kitchen Time these things happened:

Wove yarn I had dyed months previously, making a squishy cowl and a light-yet-warm scarf

Designed and constructed two purses

Tooled a guitar strap for a lucky fellow (not my husband, someone else’s)

Watercolored a bit

Made a few small tapestry weavings

Stitched on felt for a new series of cocoon maps

I went to work at the office job every day, cooked as much as I could, spent time with my lovely family, and managed a few friend dates in there too. Plus all the usual everyday crapola like laundry and cleaning the kitty litter.

The kitchen took just over a month of solid demolition, which I did the majority of. It was good, hard, physical work that threw me just enough curve balls that I was EXHAUSTED by the end of it. People- I forgot the July existed, jumping from June to August when trying to plan a deadline for work.

Sure, I could’ve let my art take a break while all of this was happening, but my brain feels so much better when I’m in that studio. Admitting, in the last week or so, I did take a break from the studio. Mostly because my hands and arms were begging for a break, the poor dears. My brain, as foggy as it was, still missed making during that break.

My hands are back to normal now, time to rebuild those creative muscles! I've got big plans for the next new big thing, more coming soon! 

the felt series in progress...

the felt series in progress...

 

 

A Brain Full

I had the delightful honor of learning from Lisa Klakulak of Strongfelt fame a few weeks ago. Not only did I get to learn techniques that would've taken me ages to figure out, but I got to spend time in one of my favorite places, Asheville NC. 

study one

study one

I lost track of how many times my brain exploded within the first few hours of the four-day workshop.

Study two, mid-felting

Study two, mid-felting

She presents techniques and goes into mathematical formulas to figure out how to manipulate the wool to do what she wants it to do. Seriously awesome, if you're interested in expanding your understanding of wet felting, get thee to her workshops! 

Study three, compared to original resist template.

Study three, compared to original resist template.

Thank you for sharing so generously, Lisa!

Spinning in Sunlight

Fingering to lace-weight, spun singles in Merino wool. Plans for weaving, to see what happens. It's been nice to spin again, falling back into the rhythm of wheel and wool.