I recently had a request from a customer in San Francisco for one of my squirrel cage winders – but with a 4 yard capacity. It seemed unlikely that one of my large squirrels just stretched up to make that capacity would be practical. So, I considered one made in two pieces that would attach to a sturdy wall – one for each “end”. I then considered one with two freestanding feet to achieve a 4 yard capacity. In proposing these options to the customer he chose the freestanding version but asked if I could both make it adjustable from 1-1/2 yard to a 4 yard capacity – and both vertical and horizontal in orientation. It was one of “those” moments – a new design just instantly flooded my mind! What I imagined and the customer immediately accepted was what you see in the photos below! It shocked even me with how this idea came to me. I described what I did to a few fiber friends and they all loved the idea. I know that this won’t be as popular as the mini squirrel cage winder nor the mini warping reel, but I’ll be making a number of them very soon. Soon, that is after I recover from my shoulder surgery to come.
Occasionally similar instant solutions and designs just come to me. One really neat example was a number of years ago in San Antonio. An artist friend, Rachel Lawrence Edwards, and I were collaborating on a piece of art for the Jewish Community Center. She recommended a “Chuppah” which is an outdoor structure that Jewish couples are married under. Rachel was doing the fabric cover and me the supporting structure. She did a remarkable job on the cover and I was idle for a bit on the structure. At work one day while working on a contract issue my mind was just flooded with a total design scheme for my part! I stopped what I was doing and sketched what I visioned. It was four freestanding corner post structures adorned with metal vines and leaves with similar rails forming borders at the top. The bases ranged from large leaves to Stars of David, I believe they are called. We set up the piece at the Center and watched as so many visitors attended the opening. What an experience – working with Rachel and the instant inspiration of the design just coming to me! My lovely and brilliant wife, Cat Brysch, has helped me learn to “Listen” to such inspiration carefully, and to not ignore such important events. I still “listen” attentively. No, it’s not like I hear voices in my head – it’s like design is downloaded from a flash drive.
I encourage each person to “Listen” to the inspiration they may receive, regardless of the source.