About Me

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Five years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Saturday, August 29, 2009


I spent a pleasant few minutes puttering in my studio before leaving for work yesterday. Diving into one of the drawers of a rolling cart, pulling out spools of thread and organizing them by color families, finding a couple more rolls of ribbon to add to the dowel that hangs in one bin. I still haven’t found my tatting shuttles, but I think I am getting closer.

Eventually I may want to get a third and possibly a fourth thread rack, so I may sort by fiber and then by color family within that fiber; i.e., all the silk thread together on one rack, all the cotton thread, all the polyester, all the novelty fibers (i.e., shiny rayon stuff meant for machine embroidery, and I have no idea what it’s doing in my stash). I found two more spools of silk thread that I had forgotten about.

I am going to look for more small organizing boxes like the ones which hold my cross-stitch thread, only with longer compartments, to hold elastic, cards of snaps, hooks and eyes, etc. And one to hold bobbins, as my bobbin collection has outgrown the space in the organizer that came with the Bernina I inherited from Mom.

I drove in, because I wanted to go to the temple after work and then on to the dance. [One of our “extra” dances, with my favorite DJ.] On the way to work, I pondered the layout of my studio. The fainting couch, a/k/a The Chastity Bed, takes up space that could be put to better use. It’s time to find it another home. So I sent an email out to the office:

Subject: First Right of Refusal

Some of you know that last year I moved into a lovely old duplex in the Cultural District of Fort Worth. It is charming, and perfect, and small. I took a good, hard look at the room I laughingly call my studio, and I realized that the fainting couch has to go. It is occupying almost an entire wall.

I think I paid $175 at an antique mall in Arlington in December 1997. I do not have the provenance; I am guessing that it is Victorian/Edwardian and possibly mahogany. The weight and the color are right, but I can only recognize knotty pine and oak on sight. It is definitely older than I am. (There’s your straight line, folks!)

One leg is a little loose from finessing it around a corner during one of many moves. It will need to be re-glued. The springs need to be retied; the upholstery fabric is appallingly ugly and torn in one spot. But her bones are good, and if you love to restore old furniture, this might be a match made in Heaven. ([Female Attorney], this sounds like a job for [your hubby]!)

I slept on this couch every night for three years; it is reasonably comfortable but not really meant for daily use, more for the occasional fit of the vapours. (I can’t remember the last time I had a fit of the vapours; probably when I had four teenagers under my roof.)

If you are interested, let me know and I will bring pictures next week.

I had heard nothing by the end of the day, so now I am throwing it open to all y’all (Subsequent Right of Refusal? Codicil? I am running out of impressive legal terminology.) If you want a really cool, really old piece of furniture and have the means or the skills to restore it, not to mention a truck and two strong backs to move it from the back of my studio, down the steps, and out to your truck, let me know. I’ll clear a path.

In the “Fanning, Fanning” Department: We had a visit to our office from a gentleman who works for the parent company. British accent. I called the managing attorney to let her know he was here, and then I told her, “But you can’t have him. I’m going to keep him here and make him read my grocery list to me.”

A Cary Grant sort of voice, very posh but not honking. [@Robi: Muffy and Dodie would definitely approve.] I need to keep a copy of “Jabberwocky” here at the office for the next time he visits. Or possibly the prologue to the “Canterbury Tales”.

[I sent myself more great links, but they will have to wait for another post.] I slept in until 7:17 this morning. Burning daylight, as we say here in Texas.

I have two shirts that are irredeemably stained, which I am going to cannibalize for future doll clothes. [Middlest, I will split the pieces with you and Fourthborn, but I may not get them in the mail until Firstborn’s socks are done and I can send you the leftover yarn as well.] I have been cutting up my clothing as it bites the dust, for about three years now. I feel a little less glum about losing a nice shirt when I know that the usable parts can go for doll clothing and not as cleaning rags or straight into the landfill.

I need to start looking for another Franklin Planner binder on eBay, which is where I found this one; it has just about been loved to death. After I replace it, I am going to take it apart, recycle as much stuff as I can, and reuse the red leather exterior to make a doll jacket if the leather is as thin as I think, or a matched set of Dolly-Vuitton if it’s heavier.

Why not make “use it up, wear it out” as much fun as possible?

And now if you will all kindly excuse me, I am almost done with the toe on Firstborns second sock, and it’s calling my name. And I probably ought to turn on the cell phone.


Tola said...

i've got an IKEA organizer that might do you for your bits n bobs. it measures 13 x 8 x 3 and has 9 compartments inside, with removable "walls" to combine spaces should you wish. i bought it for sorting/storing coins for making my charm bracelets, but they are too heavy for it. but spools of thread and ribbon would go okay i reckon. yours if you want it.

also, if you're hankering for a British narrator, i'll have the VIP ring you up to read you your nightly chapter in the BOM. and i'm actually serious.

Jenni said...

Glad that my sock still rates in your dizzy new obsession with dolls!