Showing posts from 2019

How to Make a "Rush" Woven Seat Chair Using Old Jeans (or Fabric Scraps)

I used the technique for weaving a rush chair seat to make a chair seat using old jeans. The antique ladderback chair is just the right height for me to practice my Québécois button accordion.

Fabric Choice
Although at first I considered using t-shirt strips (also called tarn), I decided to jeans because denim is stronger and not stretchy. I had some old heavy linen fabric that would have done the trick, too, but I didn't have enough for the whole chair with either linen or jeans. I decided not to mix them, at least not for my first chair.

I was advised, (correctly!) by other crafters, that all I had to do was out the word out, and I’d get donations. I sent out 4 emails and literally went shopping and there were two pairs of jeans on my doorstep. I had five more pairs by the weekend. (Now I need another chair!)

Some Pointers
Before I describe the process, here are some pointers.
I don't recommend doing this with a stretchy fabric. Therefore, if you use jeans, avoid the ones with…

Michael E. Mann Debunks some Climate Change Myths

At last night's 2019 Jones Lecture at Lafayette College, renowned climatologist Michael E. Mann provided answers to some important questions about the most effective way to fight climate change. This post could easily take the format of one of the WaPo's "5 Myths About..." columns but I'll try not to.

We're At A Pivotal Moment
Dr. Mann spends a lot of time talking to lawmakers and business leaders. He believes there has been a major change in the attitude toward climate change, away from whether it exists, to what to do. A few examples:

In the House Science Committee (officially the Committee on Science, Space and Technology of the U.S. House of Representatives), Republicans on the committee no longer dispute the science, but instead want to ensure that policies promote their conservative ideals. That is a huge shift. Rep. You don't have to deny climate change to be a conservative.  Matt Gaetz, (R-FL) has tweeted, "I didn't come to Congress to arg…

Everything Sucks

Recently I heard that a colleague had had bad year. Her boyfriend broke up with her, she lost her job, and on the day in question, her sweet, loving dog bit her in the face. Now, while all these are things no one wants to have happen, I was interested that she grouped them together to define the year as a bad one.

We construct entire landscapes of self image and judgment, based on some pretty insubstantial evidence! Finding some quiet time to be mindful of inner thoughts can really help illuminate this. It's astounding how many of our simple thoughts or even feelings in the body are accompanied by a judgment or an emotion. Wow. My brain just seems hard-wired to calculate, measure, and compare me to others, and to make predictions about the future based on my calculations and comparisons. That would be fine if the predictions were useful, but, frankly, most of them are not.

By the time I'm consciously aware of these thoughts, they seem inevitable or given, for example: "I…