Coming up for air in the new year

I feel like I’ve been a bit of a hermit the last few weeks, taking some time to reconnect at home and recharge, but now it’s time to wrap up 2016 and get started with 2017. Since my last post was before Christmas I couldn’t show you what I was working on most of December. I really enjoy knitting and fingerless gloves make a fun gift. They don’t take a year to make and they’re a nice small portable project. I have made so many over the years that I can do them without a pattern, I just keep a few notes as I’m knitting to make sure the gloves match.

The first pair (top left) is made from possum wool that I brought back from New Zealand in 2010, it’s so soft and warm. I made these for my stepdad who has arthritis in his hands. He has worn a pair I made for my mom for the last two years since they’re warm and feel so good on his hands. I figured it was time he had his own pair. Since my mom never got to wear the pair I made her two years ago, I made her a new pair in slate blue merino and silk wool.

I made the green wool pair for Indigo’s boyfriend, who’s from Los Angeles and doesn’t have things for the cold weather up here in Northern California. And the black wool pair for my son, who walks to school everyday in Berkeley.

My daughter Indigo made me this beautiful needle felted bird for Christmas.  The legs are wire wrapped with thread and it can be posed to perch on things with it’s tiny claws. The feet curl in such a way that the bird balances, lightly clinging to the cardboard tree stump she made for it to stand on.

Phil gave me a magnificent gift that he has been working on for the last year. He rebuilt the base of my 4′ x 8′ worktable that I had lost when I moved from Los Angeles to Chicago 11 years ago, because it was nailed together and had to be broken apart to get it out of the house.

This new table base is built to come apart with sliding dove tail joints and 6 bolts. It is built to standing counter top height, the way I designed it to be originally. I’m a tall girl and I hate bending over so much to work. For the last 11 years my work table has sat on an old dining room table which is too low for me to work comfortably.

This is the well for the sewing machine that sits in the corner. Phil made it extra sturdy for my 45 pound Bernina 770.

I’m so thrilled! There are large shelves under the table too, they hadn’t been put in yet when I took this photo. The top shelf is narrower so there’s room for my legs when I’m sewing. The sewing machine foot pedal sits on the bottom shelf and I have a tall stool to sit on when working, but I can also stand and sew if I want at this height.

Sadly, I can no longer see the top of my table, lol, since it is covered with supplies for my classes at Craft Napa this week.
I can hardly wait to get the chance to use my new table for making art and quilting, but that probably won’t happen till February. I’m teaching at Craft Napa this week and then I go to Mobile AL at the end of January for a 3 day acrylic inks workshop.

Unfortunately most of my time this month, when I’m not teaching, will be filled with organizing and other work related duties, as well as, getting the ceiling in my studio fixed from the leak it developed during the recent storms.

This is the new lake that was my backyard.
Luckily the rain will be starting to taper off tonight. I know a lot of people have been getting concerned whether Craft Napa would be cancelled due to all the rain, but I can assure you Pokey is determined that the show must go on! 🙂

I can hardly wait to pick up Melly Testa at the airport Tuesday and drive to Napa on Wednesday to meet up with so many friends from near and far at Craft Napa 2017, see you soon!


I have some great new workshop opportunities this year to tell you about in my next post, in the meantime…

Keep creating, Judy

IMG_5538Judy is an artist, explorer, image wrangler, knowledge seeker, instructor, speaker, creative alchemist, and purveyor of inspiration, helping others channel creativity on a daily basis.

8 Responses to “Coming up for air in the new year”

  1. Ahhhh, I so well remember that wonderful worktable of yours. It is definitely one to lust for. Happy for you that it was put together again. It must feel like reuniting with a best friend..

  2. jeannievh says:

    What a wonderful gift, Phil made you. The gloves are beautiful. I am working on a new pair for myself since all the ones I’ve worked on over the year were gifted. We have to treat ourselves every once in a while. I hope you have a fun filled time at Craft Napa. Just to be a fly on the wall would be fun. Give Melly a huge hug from me. Have fun!!! (I think it would be hard not to with all the fantastic people that are going to be there.) Cheers!

    • thanks Jeannie, we will have a blast. It really was magical last year, but how could it not be with so many creative souls all in one place. And I sure will give Melly a hug for you. 🙂

  3. hlnbaker says:

    Love your work table.

  4. Valerie Beuth says:

    Thank you for posting pictures of your new table! I want one just like it. I’ll have to discreetly slide the pictures of your table into my husband’s hands so he can study it and (hopefully) make one for me. I do have a birthday coming up…… Please show a picture of it sometime when the shelves are in. I’d also like to see the stool you use. I’ve never found a comfortable chair to sew in – I’m a quilter. Too bad about the leak in your roof. Stay dry and warm if you can. Love your blog. I’m reading it from my home in Florida.

    • Hi Valerie,

      after I get a bunch of supplies cleared off and get things organized I’ll try and get a better picture. I will need to get a better tall stool too, my other one has gotten old and sinks down a few inches whenever you sit on it, so I may have to just use a wood one until I find a good replacement.

      I’m booked to teach in Naples, FL in February 2018 if you happen to live nearby, and I’m also interested in getting booked elsewhere in Florida if you know of a guild that might be interested around that time, since I’ll be in the area.

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