The week is filled with preparation for my biggest textile show of the season, The Textile Art Alliance Boutique and Fashion Show, which is Sunday at Landerhaven. I have far less pieces of silk this year, but i have done some burnout (cut devore) pieces that typically sell quickly, and some large 4 ft square shawl scarves. Hot has always been the wire crochet brooches…. so i continue to work on stocking a goodly supply of pins and a few bracelets. Demand last year far exceeded my imagination.
Tuesday Steve has deliveries to two shops – restocking for the month, and bulking up on some of the holiday and seasonal favorites like Pumpkin Spice and Evergreen Pine soap. It is always funny how a little cold snap and the change in season brings people to focusing on fall and winter. We have just restocked several shops, including Green Roots located at the Cleveland Clinic main campus, as well as at the Evaporator Works in Hudson. I will also be wrapping shave soap, and making more shave soap boxes. Did you know that every box we use for our soap is handcrafted by me? Yes, it is labor intensive, but we like the signature style. (And we use a gray heavy card stock paper which was obtained by a company tossing out reams of it. Why waste perfectly great card stock – it saved us a ton, and we saved the land fill from being made fuller
Wednesday Steve will be cutting several batches of soap that have been curing, and we will be wrapping it up. Currently cured and ready for cutting are Pink Himalayan, Pear Basil, Evergreen Pine and Wild Man. Did you know that some of our soap recipes cure in 2-3 days, and other formulas, like Honey Almond Oatmeal take 5-6 weeks to fully cure. Fully cured soap means that the pH is neutralized from the blending of oils with lye solution. Upon initial blending of the recipe the lye is very caustic. Curing makes all the difference.
I will be finishing up the last details of my silk, adding signatures, metallic resist details and allowing for the final drying. And then the silk needs to be processed…. which means wrapping the silk in newspaper, and bundling them together wrapped in a large old quilt, and placed on the top of the steamer for a long gentle steam.
Thursday Steve plans to spend a part of the day doing some research on several new products for the coming season. Time spent researching specific ingredients, and specific formulas. Two of the ingredients we are working on developing a line of products of are honey and beeswax. More to come soon regarding this research. He also plans to make 4 more batches of soap. My plan is to apply magnets to the wire crochet brooches, and also prepare the cards I place the pins on. I chose to use that heavy cardstock that we use for the shave soap boxes. (there is actually a 3″ strip left from each sheet… and i can get two cards per strip. I use white sheet labels to print my card details, then cut them with a lacy punch…. (That is where the fun starts because the punch sometimes sticks with the label paper punches…. nothing a little foil punched cant cure… did you know that regular kitchen aluminum foil can be a help for sticky punches, and for sharpening scissors – simply fold a scrap of foil over a few times, and cut the foil with the scissors. Every cut of the foil sharpens the edge of the scissors- even the cheap dollar store scissors are drastically improved by this!)
Friday you will find us at 78th Street Studios in Suite 203, which is Allan Kradlak and Jeff Dube’s studio space. We are so thrilled to rent a small portion of their space for this one night a month. You will find us there from 5pm to 9pm.
Saturday is still a day of final preparation for TAA
Sunday is Textile Art Alliance