Monday, June 8, 2015

Spring Squam 2015: Travel & Day 1. Let the Fun Begin

Travel and Arrival

My Squam trip started Tuesday after work when I left for my sister's. She is closer to the airport and staying there overnight (besides giving me an excuse for a visit) saved me from a very, very early morning on Wednesday. Although my pennant skirt was much too bulky to take with me on the trip, I had it with me to work on while visiting Tuesday night.

When I got on the bus for the airport on Wednesday, however, I had left the skirt in the car and started working on the Wool-Aid socks I had going. I'm doing a cabled (or twisted) rib on these ones.
This is where I ran out of yarn on the plane. I am almost to the heel. I knew it was very likely that I was going to run out of yarn, but I didn't take time to wind a new ball of yarn to take with me. So I got as far as I could and that was that.

But never fear, I had grabbed another project! I had a hard time coming up with something to take until I remembered this little project:
It is a pattern and yarn that I won on a blog giveaway last April! The design is by Olga Buraya-Kefelian. She is worth following--she has amazing designs. I got a good start on the project and discovered that its little size was perfect for travel knitting.

And what's this?
Someone else knitting on a plane! Guess what...she was going to Squam too, of course. She also happened to be one of the people riding in my rental car. That's what happens when there are limited direct flights!

So we flew. We landed. We drove. And then we arrived at Squam. Aaahhh. After registration and getting goodies (!) I checked into my cabin and settled in.
Second stop (after my room) has to be the dock. Especially when the sun is shining. Once more: aaahhhh! I sat and knit before dinner and my necklace grew:
I met my roommate, Donna:
We would end up having a great time together.

After dinner on Wednesday is the opening ceremonies. Elizabeth, who founded the Squam Art Workshops, spoke and had the teachers introduce themselves by talking about their favourite pair of shoes.
Then it's back to your cabin to strike a match to the expertly laid fire and enjoy the warmth. (Yes, the workers really ready your fire for you each day so you literally need only to light the paper with one match. What a treat!) In uninsulated cabins right on the lake, the temperature was definitely in the range where you needed a fire.

Thursday-Day 1

I left the curtains open so I could look out on the lake in the morning.
Isn't that a glorious view! That's one of my cabin-mates swimming. She went in every morning--one of the very few. The lake is very cold yet. But it was good to hear her loud splashing as she kicked her legs while I snuggled in bed. The open curtains, however, meant that I woke up at 5:30 from the light. And my poor roommate did too. The next morning I enjoyed the view after I got out of bed and opened the curtains again!

I had requests for a fashion diary so here is what I wore on the first day:
I wore this skirt at Squam last time but I figured it was worth a repeat. It also suited the weather. And since I was at Squam and could get away with it, I wore my tall Spring Sprout socks. It was chilly enough that I ended up wearing my green and black zip hoodie most of the day as well. Hand knitting was well represented!

After breakfast it was time for my first class: Turning the Page with Colleen Attara. Here is the class description:
We are all storytellers.  This is our chance to tell the story we want to step into. 
Together we will be making an altered book.  Our stories will take shape on these richly layered pages. First, we will identify a moment of energy and power then, using our painted pages to create a visual journey, we bring that feeling of what we want into all our days. We will start with how we want to feel and choose a time when we felt completely at peace, open and free. For example, it could be a moment of pure I so have this
Using our words, paint, thread, paste, pencils,
paper and whatever art media inspires us*,
we will put that moment into our altered book,
so we can always access that sensation at the
turn of a page - it's there at our fingertips.
*I prepare art tables like feasts :) 
Then, with that memory in our hearts, we will move forward and create our visual map of what we want to manifest it in our lives. Each page becomes part of our vision board.
We will use cut out letters as prompts, play with photo transfers, gels and molding pastes. We will sew, paint, mark and collage. There are just so many ways to create our maps. Our plans will reveal and unfold themselves on each page. 
You need no prior mixed media experience to turn an existing book into pages of your vision board. Everything you have is already inside you. It has been there all along.
"I prepare art tables like feasts" Did you read that? How could I resist? And here is the proof:
Fabrics, yarns, glue, stamps, paints, pastels, books, magazines, tape, buttons, metal bits, pictures, paper, letter and word cutouts, etc, etc, etc. Then you had the sewing machines (and you can just make out the power tools in the background)
 and her reproduction "vintage" typewritter "Flo".
And I don't even think I got a picture of all of the painting supplies. Anyway, it was a lot and it was fantastic. After a little instruction and demonstration, we set to work on our own books with guidance and support from Colleeen.

To keep this post from being excessively long, I'm going to show the work on the actual project on another post (click here), but this is what our table looked like at lunch time when we were essentially done with the covers:
My cover is the reddish one at the bottom of the picture.

After lunch we returned for the second half of the class where we worked on the inside pages. Most people did not finish the book and I certainly did not. The end of class came and went, and we kept working. I stayed right til dinner time. By then I was exhausted, brain dead and hungry. I think creativity takes a lot of calories! But if I could have, I would have loved to have stayed until midnight.

After dinner most people retired to their cabins. There was a "cabin crawl" on the schedule so you could go look at the other cabins (they really vary in size, layout and design) and meet people, but from what I heard, there was not a high turn out. A lot of people were tired (the good tired) and cosy in front of their fireplaces on a chilly night. Most people retired quite early in my cabin and I was left by myself knitting in front of the fire. When I went to bed, it was still earlier than I would have at home.

Meanwhile, I had made progress on my necklace:

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