Before COVID hit I would begin the day by going to the gym, riding a stationary bike for 30 – 45 minutes, perhaps taking a 45 minute high intensity workout class before heading home. So when the gym closed I figured I’d landed on a “free space” meaning I’d start my exercise routine again once all of this was over. Most of us didn’t really anticipate that a year later we’d still be in that “free space”, which for someone like me was a welcome relief. Until now. Now I’m feeling increasingly guilty for counting as “exercise” walking to the elevator and getting our mail. So back in December I downloaded an exercise app because now that I’m in my sixties, exercise is less about wanting to and more about health and balance. So yes, I downloaded the app with high hopes and then promptly forgot that I’d done so. It was one of those “7 minute” workout apps. At the time, I thought – seven minutes? Who can rationalize out of doing that?!
Me. As it turns out.
This morning I decided to go see what Youtube had to say on the topic of exercise during these bizarre times, and I found this.
And then I ran across this old chestnut, which I’m pretty sure I’ve posted before, but in case I haven’t, here you go. Enjoy. I don’t know about you, but my life looks an awful lot like it did when we were in lockdown. I rarely leave the house. I’m more paranoid about catching COVID now than I was at the height of the pandemic. And now a variant, that they are saying may be resistant to the vaccines, has hit New York City and so I’m completely freaking out. Dancing around the house to music videos is as good as my current exercise routine is going to get. Still, I hold out hope that at some point I’ll take it all more seriously. Maybe I’ll try one of those 7 minute exercise workouts after I finish writing this. Or not.
I’m pleased to report, however, that my hands and fingers are as nimble and dexterous as ever, thanks to my daily hand stitching, um… workouts!
Later today, at 2pm (EST) my Threaded Backstitch and Double Threaded Backstitch Youtube video is premiering, so join me and we can chat as it plays! Remember, it won’t be available to play until 2pm today. And in the meantime maybe I’ll work in some squats and push ups. I’m not making any promises though.
Some people use calendars, others just keep everything they need to do in their heads, I keep lists. You know the old fashion, hand written list made on a scrap of paper or if I’m being really organized, on a note pad, preferably letter or even legal sized, as my lists tend to be pretty long.
I’m a big believer in lists. Also unexpected things happen throughout the day that can intrude, thus derailing my list. It’s comforting to know my list is still there, ready for me to continue checking items off once the intrusion has been taken care of or passed on its own.
Yesterday my friend, Anna Bates, of Quilt Roadies, and I decided we were going to do a Facebook live video together. We fully expected that as we both know our way around Youtube, have done livestreaming, set up large groups on Facebook, and in Anna’s case, even done a FB live video before, how hard could it be? Right? So when Anna’s husband helpfully mused aloud that maybe we should do a trial run before just launching in, Anna did what I would have done, shrugged this advice off, because we’ve got this! All I can say is that Anna was so utterly demoralized by the whole experience, she went on to do another video, this time on Youtube, just to feel better. And she does redeem herself in that video. Me, not so much. Instead I’m just writing this post about it, you know, to reduce the trauma. Oh! And by the way, Anna isn’t the “intrusion” in this story, but our failed FB Live so derailed me, all I could do for the rest of the day was work on my mother’s Making Waves: A Drawstring Bag, which is the second to last item on my todo list.
Still, Anna and I are determined, and one little mishap isn’t enough to keep us down. SO this Friday, February 19th at 10am PST, 1pm EST we are going to attempt another Facebook live video, this time, together! We even tested it out, as per G.’s helpful suggestion, and we’re good to go. This time (we are hoping) there will be a split screen with Anna on the west coast and me on the east coast chatting together about our stitching and all that we love. Unlike yesterday, when Anna, in a moment of desperation, (and a stroke of genius on her part) saved the whole mess by putting me on speaker phone so that people could, at least, hear what she was responding to, as my voice goes in and out. We did laugh though, quite a bit, even so. I will share this coming Friday’s video via my FB group, Ariane Zurcher Stitching Circle so anyone in that group will be able to watch it. In addition anyone who follows me and/or Anna on FB should be able to view as well. Anyway, that’s our plan. But no worries, we’ve got this. I swear.
Even with yesterday’s fumble, I was able to post this video this morning of my latest design onto YouTube AND I got quite a bit of stitching done. So there’s that.
Yesterday I launched my latest design, Making Waves: A Drawstring Bag in my Etsy Shop! I also made a short video for it. My instructions are very, very detailed. I include everything from how to begin, to how to stitch this bag together and film all stages of the process. YouTube videos demonstrate every step so you can follow along. Each video is embedded within the instructions using Hotlinks. As I spend, literally, hundreds of hours video taping, editing and posting each video before embedding it within the instructions, my downloadable patterns are a bit more expensive. Not much. A little. People tell me they are well worth it.
This project began as a Stitch Along with a group of 17 hand stitchers who signed up for the class, which took place over Zoom. Over the course of 8 weeks we stitched this bag together and had a blast doing so.
A couple of people have asked me whether I will be doing this class again, so if you’re interested let me know as I will do it again, if there’s enough interest. The Zoom classes consist of eight one-hour classes although I would be open to doing a five-day workshop with classes running a 3-4 hours each. You can use your own threads or opt for a thread kit. If you choose a thread kit I will need to order in advance and we will have to wait until everyone has theirs to begin. This can take anywhere from one to two months, depending upon availability of the threads and how many people want kits.
I am also beginning a new design, which will be another Stitch Along, meaning that I will be designing this project as we go! What’s fun about that is that each week I unveil a new part of the design, which is fun and exciting. Once I have the basic background concept designed, I will post more about it. Right now I’m in the midst of throwing a lot of different ideas around and seeing which one I like best as well as determining which will make the most sense to add a lot of embellishing to it. As with the Making Waves design, I will be incorporating a great many different techniques and materials, such as hand dyed t-shirt scraps, hand dyed cheesecloth, wool roving, Dorset Buttons, beading, ribbon work and other fun things like that.
Until then, I will keep you posted!
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Please browse and look at our patterns available. We also offer Workshops! ~Ariane