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Horsey and Me

I recently found Horsey in my bottom nightstand drawer, where he has lived since we moved to the mountains ten years ago.  He is at least 60 years old and has been with me since I was very young.  He’s a little worn from being loved so much and is missing the button that Steiff marks their toys with  – taken off very early in our relationship – but is still wearing the saddle blanket I knit for him.

In addition to playing house, school and dress-up, my older sister and I would play “The Adventures of Horsey and Susan”.  I have since forgotten the stories we made up but vividly remember endless days of entertainment using the stuffed horse or our hands formed into a horse when the toy was not readily available.  Blackie was Horsey’s nemesis and always getting in trouble – years of watching Roy Rogers, Sky King and My Friend Flicka definitely had an impact on our creativity when it came to naming horses.

When my sister was old enough to be in Brownies, my mom became the troop leader.  Too young to be a brownie yet, I wore a brown dress instead of a uniform and was considered a “Baby Brownie” since a babysitter was not an option.   All the activities that the brownies did, I got to participate in as long as I behaved myself.  As a Baby Brownie and later as a real one, we learned many skills including how to crochet, embroider, hook potholders and knit.

Shortly after taking those lessons, I used the skein of variegated yellow and brown acrylic yarn to come up with my own pattern and knit a blanket for Horsey.   The yarn was well used, having been knit and unraveled, crocheted and unraveled many times.  It held up for this last project and survived all these years without any damage – acrylic, like plastic, is relatively indestructible. 

Through grade school, high school, college, marriage and a career in IT, crochet became my go-to craft and the knitting needles were rarely pulled out.  We traveled by car a lot and the compact nature of a single hook working a single loop was very travel friendly.  Our trips to the mountains developed into a love of the mountains where we were fortunate enough to be able to move ten years ago.  With the move I decided to learn to knit again.  I bought books, watched YouTube videos and worked through several projects of increasing complexity, finally mastering different techniques including Brioche.  The more complex patterns appeal to my technical brain and the results can be truly unique.

Looking at Horsey’s blanket brings back so many wonderful memories.  The acrylic yarn just screams 1960’s and my years in scouting helped expand my creativity.  That little girl is all grown up now.  She remembers how to cast on and cast off, fix her mistakes and find joy in the finished product.  To be able to pass on these hand knit items, and the knowledge and history of knitting to future generations make Horsey and me very happy.  



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When I was young, my family visited Williamsburg Virginia. I still can remember watching the colonial reenactors preparing wool for spinning and weaving it into cloth. The wheel was hypnotizing.

So, when I started participating in the local public market, I was thrilled to see the young kids stop and watch me spin. But what amazed me even more was the number of people who stop to watch and tell me their own stories and memories involving spinning and weaving.

There was one elderly gentleman who told me his wife wove tapestries that covered the entire wall of a bank lobby. A 95-year young grandmother learned spinning from her grandmother. Little girls wondered if it was the same wheel Snow White used. But what I loved the most was teaching and showing others what made me fall in love with the fiber arts.

I’m still doing the weekend market and look forward to meeting interesting people and hearing their stories. One of my favorites came from a young girl with her dad. “Look” her dad said, “that lady is weaving”. And without missing a beat, the little girl turned and said, “no daddy, that’s a spinning wheel”.

 I loved it!


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Catwalk Fiber Arts

There is something about spinning, weaving and knitting that connects us to our history. Creating yarn by hand from a sheep’s fleece takes time and patience. By enjoying the rhythm of the acts of cleaning, carding, roving and spinning the fiber, a feeling of peace and serenity can often be accomplished. Think of how our ancestors had only the output from their own efforts to create cloth or something to wear. We are fortunate to be able to spin, weave or knit an item for the beauty of it.

Our goal is to provide unique hand spun, hand woven, and hand knit items to share with you. In most cases, when we weave or knit an article, it will be the only one because we find that it is more fun to do something new each time. We hope you enjoy having a unique creation that was made the old fashioned way.

Catwalk Fiber Arts