Who is Orange Sink?

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Rice Lake, WI, United States
My home town is Rice Lake, a small town in northern Wisconsin. I own Red House Wool Studio~ an in-home wool and rug hooking business. I enjoy collecting and decorating with antiques and primitives. Orange Sink Blog is a journal of my interests and ramblings about life. Cathy Greschner

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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A Merry New Rug Design~~

I just couldn't help myself... today I turned on the Christmas Music!  Just a little and very softly to ease into the Holiday Season.
A few weeks ago I finished hooking this Merry Christmas rug. I was inspired by the lettering on vintage Christmas cards and greetings.
It's a small table runner that measures about 8 by 25 inches.  It looks wonderful everywhere I've displayed it in my home!  On the wall, on the work harvest table in the kitchen and over the fireplace.  How about over a doorway greeting visitors this Merry Season!
I've used a dark green plaid wool for the letters and a couple of soft sprucy looking antique greens for the background.  I've outlined the rug in a very deep and rich antique red and a row of hand-dyed gold. I went for an antique look and I really love the way it turned out!
So I've decided to offer my pattern for a limited time this Holiday season so you can hook your own.  Check on my sidebar over there on the left and you will see the button to purchase.
It will be mailed to you via snail mail ( because I haven't figured out yet how to do epatterns. That's on my list of new things to learn this coming year!
The pattern is a full sized paper pattern ready for you to trace to your own backing material. 

Well... hope you like it!  I'm off to finish folding a few patterns and listen to a few carols!
Fa la la la la!
Cathy G

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Thankful For.....

.... the many good friends I've made through my journey as a blogger!  I cannot imagine my life now without the connections we've made and the daily pleasure of reading your posts and keeping up with what everyone is doing and the happenings in your lives!
When I opened my "snail mail" box yesterday I could hardly contain my excitement as the package had arrived that I was expecting from one of my good blogging friends Lauren of RUGS and PUGS blog!  She had one of her many generous give-aways a few days ago and the stars and moon and sun must have all been  lined up perfectly as I was the lucky winner!  
YaY!!!  One of her gorgeous wide strip ( I believe they may be hand-torn ?  Lauren.... or do you have a cutter blade that wide?   OH my Goodness it is so plush and beautiful!  A few of the girls were over Sat. when I took it out of the package and eyes and fingers were eagerly checking it out!!!

The back was of great interest to everyone!  What a wonderful way to finish the back of these wonderful pumpkin mats!  It is like a patchwork quilt!  I love flipping the rug over and finding something wonderful on the back as well!

Thank-you so much Lauren!  You are a very generous soul and having one of your hand-made lovely rugs to admire and touch each day and your friendship is indeed a reason for thankfulness!
It brings you closer and even though our lives take place hundreds of miles apart we share the bond of hooking rugs and the crazy wool addiction that only a sister hooker can understand!!
Big hugs to you Lauren!

Here is a photo of our Christmas tree out in the studio in the process of being decorated.  It has all handmade wool ornaments made by Jill and myself and is looking quite lovely!  The tree is fake however!  I found it at my neighbor's moving sale this summer for $5.00!  It is perfect for these larger ornaments don't you think?  

I had a string of those LED lights on it originally and for some reason those type of lights don't seem to sparkle enough for my liking.... anyone else experience that with LED?  I know they are supposed to be energy efficient and all that but if they don't twinkle then what's the use?  I'm thankful you can still find the Non LED for now.

( I'm still holding out and not playing the Christmas music yet.... don't know what my problem is this year... 
maybe the twinkling lights will help!!
Cathy G

Sunday, November 10, 2013

A Paper Wasp Nest

When all the leaves fell from the tall sugar maple trees in our front yard a few days ago we looked waaaaaayyy up to see a nice paper wasp's nest hanging from a very thin branch in one of them.  Knowing these nests are very fragile and the wasps don't use them again, nor are they holed up inside for the winter as many  believe... Dave decided to see if he could retrieve it from the tree.
When he decides to do these things I always get a little nervous picturing the big extension ladder and a 60 year old guy ( who is in great shape mind you) losing his balance and.... you get the picture don't you?

He appeared a few moments later proudly showing me his prize and calling his buddy who evidently knows how to put some type of preservative on these things so they don't fall apart. His buddy was pretty excited too and said to Dave..."Cathy will really like that to hang in her studio.... it will look real nice with the decor out there!"  
Yep, it doesn't take much to excite these lumberjack fellows here in the north woods!  LOL!  But to tell the truth as much as I'm fascinated by these jewels of nature I'm a little creeped out by them too.  I'm not particularly fond of wasps.  I think there's been a few too many bee stings in my recent past to appreciate it's beauty hanging in my studio.

Here is a close-up of the layer upon layer of very thin delicate paper the wasps have made. They use bark from trees and leaves and chew it to create their masterpiece in beautiful grays, silvers, browns and taupe. There are little bits of green perhaps grass.  How can one not be fascinated by the finished product these wasps call home for the summer.  And to think it held up through a few storms and an early gusty fall snowstorm a couple of weeks ago.

So yes we shall admire it and marvel at nature and her mysterious ways.  It will be preserved and handled gently.  For now it hangs in the garage from the handle bars of a bike that has been stored hanging from the rafters for the winter.  Where it will end up is anybody's guess.  But I'm fairly certain it will not be gracing a corner of my wool studio.

November Blessings!!
Cathy G

Friday, November 8, 2013

My Latest Class of Beginning Rug Hookers!

"Simply Sweet Sunflower"
designed by Cathy Greschner for
Beginning Rug Hooking Class November 7th 2013

Yesterday we had seven lovely ladies here in the studio for another beginning rug hooking class!  What an awesome group of ladies!  We laughed, chatted, drank some spiced caramel apple cider, ate pumpkin muffins and yes we hooked!  They are all off to a wonderful start on their little sunflower mats I designed especially for this class!  
Everyone is thrilled to be learning how to hook rugs! These gals are talented quilters and wool appliqué artists already and want to learn yet another craft! 
Next week they come back to learn the art of binding their sweet little mats!  
I am a stickler for making sure they learn to bind their rugs... the part of rug hooking we all love so much.... right Lauren?  LOL!! 
It's not a rug until it's bound!

Speaking of finishing... Jill and I just completed a couple of wool appliqué  models for the studio shop.... here is Jill's...

Didn't she do a beautiful job?  Of course everything Jill does is finished and stitched to perfection!
I just LOVE this bag!  Oh my goodness the studio is REALLY starting to feel like the Holidays!!

I have  a finish to show too.... this 18 inch wool applique mat with Holly and Berries!  It was SOOOOO much fun to stitch!!  The more I do this wool appliqué  the more I'm lovin' it!!

Well off to work a little more in the studio today and get things ready for tomorrow! 
We are open on Saturdays from 10:00 to 4:00 so if you live in this neck of the woods PLEASE stop on by... the coffee and cider will be brewing!  Warm up between snowflakes and come fondle our newly dyed wool and browse all the new patterns!  

Cathy G

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Trouble Adjusting!

Someone's having trouble adjusting to daylight savings time!  Yep... my diabetic pooch Smokey!  Here he is following me and peeking in the bathroom door!  He is on the old time clock that says it's time to eat right now MOM!!  I am trying to get him to hold off for at least another half-hour so everything works out with his insulin schedule.  He gets shots every twelve hours. When daylight savings time comes around each Fall and Spring we have to adjust things a little.
Anyone else having trouble adjusting?   I wish they would just leave the time alone and let us live our lives on one schedule.  
What did they do in days before electric and battery powered clocks?  Oh yea.... just thought of it now... better go in the dresser drawer and switch all my wrist watches to the correct time! 
And don't forget the clocks in the vehicles!  
What a pain!!

Happy Daylight Savings Time!!

Cathy G