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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Thursday, March 20, 2014

They Came With Flowers!!

Today was a beautiful, busy day here in the studio!  My friends came  from Grantsburg, WI to spend the day hooking, chatting, snacking and sharing their latest projects!  AND they came with this HUGE beautiful bouquet of fresh Spring flowers!!  How they spoil me!  The day flew by as we color planned, hooked and admired the rugs they are working on!

Meet Sharon!  She is working on quite a few projects. The rug she's working on in this photo she's hooking in a nine cut!   I'll have to catch photos as she gets a little more hooked!  We color planned her next rug, a design by Sharon Smith, you can see a glimpse of the pattern cover in the lower left corner!  Sharon is so pretty!  Long beautiful hair!  She's a bit camera shy so I had to snap quite a few before I caught her looking up!  

Here is Cindy!  She's a hairdresser when she's not hooking rugs!  Oh and look at the footstool cover she just finished hooking!  She is working on a proddy edge for it so will have to try to get a photo of the finished piece!  She ran out of wool for the background a few times... we fixed her up with colors that blended quite well... but she's no stranger to reverse hooking! She has a lot of rugs and projects in the making too!  I think next month when we get together again the girls will bring more to show and tell!
Don't you love Cindy's hair?  She's such a cutie!   Makes me want to chop my long white mane off for summer.... hmmmm will have to think about that!  LOL!  

Will you take a look at this fabulous rug!!  It is a footstool cover being hooked by Elaine!  It is a camping scene that she had specifically drawn by a friend of hers.  It depicts a mountain, camper, river and all the elements of camping outings she enjoys with her family!  I LOVE that old rusty red pick-up truck!  Elaine is working on numerous projects too so hopefully we'll get photos to show the next time they come down for a visit!  
Elaine is a beautiful lady! She makes her scarves, hooks handbags for every sister and niece in her family!  I am hoping she wants to adopt me!!  LOL!!

Elaine hooking on her camping footstool cover rug.

I hope to post the official announcement about the Quilt Event Jill and I are planning to vend at here in Rice Lake.  It is coming up soon... April 12th to be exact!  Details to follow!  I guess I better quit having so much fun and get to work!!

Cathy G

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spring Cabin Fever!

I think everyone is in the mood for some Spring house cleaning. After all the calendar says it's that time of year! Every Spring I get the itch to purge, change, paint, rearrange in so many areas of life! I'm sure our pioneer sisters felt the same way.. isn't that why they coined the term "cabin fever"? 
So where do I  begin?
I guess I decided I could part with this rug to start with.... sigh.... really don't want to, it's such a cute rug and nice design by Robin of Bird in the Hand Primitives.   I listed it on Ebay here.  Maybe it won't sell for the price I'm asking.... in that case it can live here and I won't have to go through withdrawal!  LOL!

After a week of doing pretty much nothing but resting and drinking a ton of Alka-Seltzer plus ( yep... a head cold tried to get the better of me!) I had to do something creative.

I found an old piece of plaid wool that was a lining to a winter coat in it's former life and quick sewed together a wacky little rabbit!

Stuffed him with wool and rags.  He likes the little wool carrots applique'd onto his springy yellow wool scarf!  He promised not to eat them until after the photo shoot!  LOL!

Thank-you for all your kindness and comments in the last post!  Liking or hating the color purple is a very interesting topic!  I sometimes am drawn to it in a big way.... like in this rug I found on Pinterest.

No website or name to trace the maker.  If it is yours or you know who hooked it please let me know and I'll add that information.

Well, back to the dye pots.  I'm selling wool here as fast as it comes out of the dryer!

Cathy G

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The Color Purple

This time of year my thoughts often turn to the color purple.  Maybe it's because living in the frozen landscape of northern WI the first glimpse of it outdoors means Spring has truly sprung. Indoors, if truth be told, purple is scarce in this primitive lover's crayon box of decorating colors! Oh... if you look hard enough you will see bits here and there. But usually the more soft and muted shades of it.  Lavender if you will.  

The other day while searching for patterns online, this handbag really caught my eye! The shades of purple with the gold....  now I think I could handle that!  

So I pulled a few wools from the shelves and raced to my frame, grabbed my hook... and.... well... I'm still having trouble embracing this color purple.  

 I might try my hand at making some of these wool covered eggs.  The photo is from Olde Country Farm Simples on Ebay.  I love the colors she chose.  The purple is more like a light shade of the eggplant purple which I adore.

I'll leave you with this photo of a rug that my friend Lisa hooked using my "Flower Pot" pattern.  I happen to know she hates the color purple! You will never see a speck of it in her rugs or home!  LOL!  She also hates to bind her rugs.  So this one is not yet bound.  I did give it a steam press and have been admiring it here in the studio. The earthy primitive colors are gorgeous.  I guess you either love or hate the color purple.  I'm really on the fence about it.
What are your thoughts on purple... do you wear it, love it, hate it, decorate with it?  

Cathy G

Sunday, March 9, 2014

The Beautiful Basket Maker

When Sherri told me she was a basket maker I had no idea the artistry I was about to behold when she arrived with a load of her gorgeous woven treasures.
It was pure eye candy watching as she took each tiny basket from another larger basket and talked about the materials such as pine needles (the one in the above photo) ash, oak, willow and birch bark that she uses to create her masterpieces.

The beadwork, colorful dyed reeds, creative shapes and finishes on her baskets speak of the love she has for her craft.
Exquisite attention to detail is evident on every one down to the tiniest little buttocks basket that is barely an inch tall.
So wonderful and sweet!

More beadwork dazzles and delights the eye!  

I loved this nice large design with soft brown leather lining the handles and could visualize it filled to the brim with freshly dyed wool! 

Another large beauty.... so intricate I cannot imagine how she does it!

So delicate and I love the design work on this one!

Fabulous work!

 Please allow me the pleasure of introducing the beautiful basket maker Sherri Beyrer!  She is now adding hooked rugs to her list of creative talents!  She  also stitches and enjoys designing her own greeting cards.

It's been such a pleasure getting to know Sherri these past few weeks after she decided to take my rug hooking class.  She has three boys ages 20, 23 and 25.  She doesn't look a day over 25 herself, don't you think?

It has to be all the fresh air and hard work that she and her husband are enjoying on the dairy farm they own and operate.

Thank-you Sherri for allowing me to share these fabulous works of your hand and a little about you here on my blog.

We welcome you to the world of rug hooking and look forward to seeing some of your rugs in the near future! I know you will be good and bind them right away too!!   

                                                Cathy G


Friday, March 7, 2014

Welcome My Newest Class of Rug Hookers!

Last evening my newest class of beginning rug hookers met here in my studio to learn how to sew the bindings onto their rugs!   What a wonderful group they are... Janice, Kaye, Sherri, Nancy, Pat (who couldn't make it last evening) and Marty!  And I'm happy to announce that Marty is the first man to participate in one of my rug hooking classes! 

Here he is doing a fabulous job at sewing on that binding! He loved the hooking part... but wasn't too crazy about the binding!!
Sound familiar?    Well... join the crowd Marty!  Binding seems to be the least favorite part of a lot of long time hookers out there.  The trick is to get at it right away!  I know.... easier said than done... but what a wonderful feeling to have a completely finished beautiful rug to enjoy!

I didn't get a nice group photo of the class.... I feel bad about that... so I hope we can get together again soon and they will be working on new projects to share with you!

Sherri is a basket maker and brought some baskets to show us!  Oh my gosh you won't believe how gorgeous they are!!  I'll take photos of them in the next couple of days and share them with you!

The new iPhone camera seems to be working out real well.  It's the photographer who needs to practice  more to get better at using it!  Just as in rug hooking or learning to put on that binding it's just practice, practice, practice!!  Right Marty? LOL!!

I hope you'll join me in welcoming these lovely ladies and gentleman to our fold... they are hooked!!
And I couldn't be happier!!

Cathy G

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Capturing the Blues with a Smart Phone

You may recall a couple of posts back  I mentioned my camera was on it's way out.  Well, it finally died.  After a day or two of mourning the passing of my little Canon Power Shot, I knew it was time to make a decision as to which new gadget was going to replace it. 
 Talking with relatives and friends who can't function without their smart- phones and who keep telling me how great the cameras are on these new phones led me to think more seriously about replacing the little flip-phone that I affectionately call my dumb-phone with a new state of the art smart one.  

Yes, Mrs. Orange Sink has joined the modern world and is now the proud owner of one of these new fangled phones.
The hours I've spent the past couple of days playing with and trying to outsmart this little iPhone 5s are more than I care to admit!
But see for yourself the photos above that I took this morning.
 Well.... I'm impressed!  Are you?
I have much to learn before I feel comfortable with this new little smart guy accompanying me around the place.  Who knows, maybe it's not too late for this old gal to learn something new.
I never thought I'd see the day though that I'd feel intimidated by a phone.
I do take comfort however in this.....
 I feel fairly certain that no matter how smart this little computer phone thinks it is, it won't ever be able to hook a rug... at least not in my lifetime!!

Cathy G