Sunday, September 27, 2020

Non weaving post - misc fall observations

 Fall is upon us.  We are feeling we are running out of time and that we haven't accomplished much this summer season.

Looking at pictures tho, we have done big projects.  The thing is, there are many big projects that must be done around here!

Biggest visual project was the demolition of the inground pool.

The pool was surrounded by wood decking.  Rotten of course.  I managed to convince the young ones to burn this wood - filled with nails and screws - in the bottom of the pool instead of somewhere random on the property.  The metal is now buried deep and out of the way of hooves and feet. 

While we were burning, we decided to take off the rotten deck that was right next to the pool.  It came down in one piece, it was too rotten to try to take it apart from on top of it.  The blue things were the sides of the pool.  Those are buried in the hole, too.

Here is a view from the upper floor while we were in the process.  There was a retaining wall around the pool deck. 

And here is the finished - for now - product.  Six trees also came out while we were moving dirt.  Unbelievably, we didn't need to haul any dirt in.  Plan is next spring to bring in some of the composted manure from the cattle yards to spread and fill any spaces that might settle.  The ground is very gravelly and got packed very well from the tractor and loader while it was getting filled in. The view is from the area right outside my 'loom room'  which I am currently trying to put some order to.  Yesterday we hauled out a large entertainment center, giving me quite a bit of added space to house totes full of processed weaving fabrics.  There is also a large old piano that we are trying to rehome. That must come out before snow fall!

My mares came home from breeding pasture this week, too.  This time of year I am always fascinated with Buzz and Flutter's coloring - their dun factor really shows as they are putting on their winter coats.

This is Flutter, she is a red dun.

And this is Buzz.

Queenie is just getting fluffy in her Chestnut coat :)

Old girl Bug has been sticking her head in cockle burrs that I pick out each day.  

Yesterday she was a unicorn.

This old girl is 28.  We think she is a little senile. This will be her last summer - I won't make her endure another winter as she has told me it is time to move on.  We haven't scheduled her day yet, but it will be before the bitter cold and snow arrives.   Hard - but I believe it is my responsibility to give her a dignified and easy end.  

It was a beautiful weather day yesterday. We got alot of small yard things finished up and cleaned up.

Today it is windy and cold, good day for me to stay in and try to put some more order to my loom room.

All for now,

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Fall Festival

 I admit, I didn't commit to this local event until just the other day.  I wanted to see how I felt from last weekend at the big event.

Working during the week and then doing weekend shows usually means I'm "working" 7  days a week.  It's tiring :)

Early in the week I started looking at the weather forecast  and decided if they would let me in, I would go to this event.  My rugs were still in the house garage and would need to be handled and packed away anyway, if I didn't take them somewhere.

They let me in, so I took 2 spots for a grand total of 20$ -  Nice low fee and 20 miles from home.

The forecast told me it would be somewhat breezy, but in the mid 70's with 0% chance of rain.  I decided to leave the canopy home and just spread out on my canvas tarp floor.  

Even tho I was a late addition, I got a very prime spot.  Right at the entrance to the visitor center!

The organizers said they had no idea how many attendees to expect, but said if they got 200 they would be happy.  They had 1000 ish.  Wow :)

This event is their Fall Festival where they harvest the Fort garden.  They use horse drawn implements to do it, and attendees get to pick potatoes and pumpkins to take home.

I had nice sales.  6 good sized rugs and a few smaller sales of mug rugs and runners.

Beautiful fall South Dakota day - and it WAS windy.  The center hanger shown ended up deciding to tip over during the last 1/2 hour of the day.  

I was happy for the breeze tho.  Some of the rugs were still a little damp from last weekend, so they got good and dry after the day in the breeze. 

Things were packed away and are now in my storage trailer awaiting my next show Mid October. 

All for now,


Wednesday, September 16, 2020



Well, I survived a new to me craft venue.

As you can see I had plenty of inventory -  Nearly 200 rugs, 100 table runners and a basket full of mug rugs.

This is the priciest vendor event I've done so far.  Application fee, booth fee, parking.  It was /is a risk to lay out such a large chunk of cash in the hopes to sell enough to make it worth it.

Challenges were the 'pandemic fear' and weather.  

As you can see by the pavement, it was, shall we say, damp?  

Surprisingly tho, there seemed to be a decent crowd.  I won't say I was happy with the amount of sales - my fees for the day ate up a bit more than 30% of my sales.  That doesn't include gasoline, food, administrative/office type expenses.   Or labor.  I aim for the booth fees to be 10% of my sales, so this definately was underperformance in my eyes. 

Not so bad that I won't try again next year.  

Interesting note tho... when I was loading product, I had a handful of rugs I was considering leaving at home - they have been riding around with me for literally years.  But, I Sold 2 of them....  Need to stop worrying about what not to take and just take it all!

My main loom is currently naked, I had finished up the blue denim warp.  I have a nice group of those now going into the fall show run ( if there ends up being one) .

 These are the piles of standard sizes - fringed and hemmed.

I also have some longer ones and just a couple colored denim done on this warp.

Change of subject -  I found some plums on the old trees behind the house.  Just enough to make one batch of plum jelly.

I can't wait to try it, but I am forcing myself to finish the open jar of crab apple jelly that is in the fridge first.  Jelly making is a challenge here.  Most of my equipment is still packed away - that I had kept when I moved.  I had sold most of my jars and canners figuring that from the good price I got when I sold, I could replace with new when I was ready and had the time and space to store it.

Its a good thing I don't need to do much of that right now...  There seems to be a shortage of lids and even jars in our area.  Is this true around the country?  Marketplace on facebook is seeing people selling used jars for almost new prices, and even people selling open boxes of the lids. 

I need to wrap this up - so many things that need to be done - it's fall and we can feel the winter coming.


All for now,