Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Headless Chicken Scramble

I'm taking a quick break to snap photos of all the irons I have in the fire at the moment. (At least the most photogenic of them...)

I finished the red beam. Don't even ask how many hours I've been working every day to make that happen. I've lost a noticeable amount of "winter weight" and gained an astonishing amount of muscle tone as a side effect.

Notice how the sections mostly ran out at once? This means I've mostly solved the winding problem from March.

I wish I had more time to really celebrate this next bit. I am caught up with my weaving workload! In January I set a goal for how much weaving should get done every week to keep me in cloth at shows and start next year with a good variety and a little surplus. Despite losing my in-house apprentices, setting up a new studio, and taking six weeks medical leave, I am caught up! Thanks to Jacob and Max for their help. Even ten days made a huge difference.

In the graph, see that straight green line? That's the goal for my steady average. See how I've been below it all year? The red vertical line is "now", and indicates that, for now, I'm slightly above my goal. It also predicts that I will dip below it when I'm traveling and unable to weave. No resting on laurels in this studio!

With red off the loom, it's time to start plying green. I'll have none in time for Washington, but there are plenty more shows this year and people are crying for green.

At the last minute, I got "into" a show I've wanted to try for years. And, I'm not even in, really. I am selling someone else's work and will have the chance to sell my stuff at night to the other vendors and actors. This means a portable lighting set up put together in a hurry! Wheeee!

I'm also working on a new booth for the Bellevue Arts Museum show. It's got low ceilings and requires lighting. I can't use my standard booth, but I can repurpose the tube-and-joint affair that I put together last Winter. I just needed six new joints for a flat roof, and they arrived while I was typing this post. And look! I still remember how to draw perspective projections from back when I thought I would become a draftsman. (Boy, am I showing my age!)

I am also learning that I can't do it all. This pipe cutter is OK for a few cuts, but my hands can't handle making 11 cuts on thick-walled 1" EMT conduit. I'll take them to the fix-it man this afternoon. He's got all the right tools for this stuff.

And here's a sneak peak of the new banner design. I've been living with these tiny replicas for weeks as I worked with the designer to get it finalized and off to the banner printers. I'll write more about this when I get the real banner next week.

And finally, I realized in Seattle that folks want to scan my QR code inventory tags with their smart phones. So, instead of an internal serial number, these tags now direct people to hidden product pages on my website. And they still perform their primary function, which is to speed up checkout in the booth. Yeah!

I'm not going to retag items that are already in the shop, but instead I'll use these tags for all new products. By the end of the season, there shouldn't be any old tags left.

And that's the studio in a nutshell!

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