Special Samples and Stress

Jeane shared photos of two small tapestries with me – and I’d like for you to take a look. I should write a book about all the images that such wonderful people share with me. I’m impressed! All of them are wonderful!
Working on my last two runs of fiber tools. Terribly stressed about so much going on. The most intense source of stress is our Corvette. AC issues since the day we bought it 2-1/2 years ago. It has been in the service department of Reliable and Casa Chevy for a total of several MONTHS, where it is now. They have duplicated the problem several times yet have no idea what to do. The GM service tech specialist is at a loss. Now, Casa says they will keep it till they fix it! It’s time that GM and Casa stand up and be simply reasonable. They need to buy me out of it or put me in a new Corvette equipped like ours. Practically, I have the impression that they must have a waiting list of employees to take joy rides and drive it home every night. The co-owners, Mark Wiggins and Bob Tabor told me that they would do whatever they needed to to “make it right”… Well, they haven’t and at this point I’m not sure they will. I’ve left two messages for Bob, but no return. Mark did make good on a terrible new ’11 Silverado HD. It’s time for him to honor his word. My honor is good, even to the little fat wantabe cheerleader.



Samples and Stuff

Good Morning this Easter day!
I have a couple of samples two of my customers have woven and shared with me – now to you too…. The one on the left is from Val and the right one is from Linda. Still, I absolutely LOVE the variety!
Last week we took all of our motorcycles to a consignment bike shop in Albuquerque – Smoky’s. He is a real gentleman who will be sure they go to deserving riders. We miss them already. Friday we towed the 1941 Ford pickup to Santa Fe – for very major mechanical work. It will have dash, gauges, seat, battery relocation and other inside work. But, the bottom end – new drivetrain complete including disc brakes, and a high performance Chevy 350 and compatible auto and complete new suspension & steering. The truck just sat too low – so that was my initial focus. It grew…. Stephen of Green Monkey Coachworks is a world class builder – we feel so very lucky to have ran across him. I promised to be very very patient – his work is pure Art…
Making headway on final runs of weaving tools – just two more runs to go then I will not be producing anything else. I do have a good stock of most everything, but am negotiating with several dealers for ALL of some individual tools. I still look to about mid-June to shut down. I regret doing this, but medical issues are shouting for me to do so. I get older every day…….  I look forward to bowls, boxes, welded sculptures, and lots of drives in the Corvette and ’41 Ford.
I wish everyone a safe holiday.

Changing Gears

Changing Gears

I’m so tired. My old body is wearing out. I’m old. While the old cowboy rides away into the sunset, it’s time for me to take another look at my life. My health is failing. My Primary Care doctor sat about 6” from my nose last year and told me to either quit my fiber tool business or just to put my affairs in order. I listened and set into motion Changing Gears. Cat is dealing with a serious health issue. I work far too much, too long, too often. I’m not a cowboy but I’m going to spend more time looking at sunsets in lieu of paying attention to fabricating fiber tools.

Therefore, I am going to really retire – and limit my activities in my shops to fun stuff like bowls, boxes, welded sculptures, even kid’s toys. My long and exceptionally intense career making fiber tools is almost over. Mid-year is my goal to sell out of all the looms and tools. If they sell out sooner, it’s the better for me. Almost everything right now is in good stock. There are only about a dozen exotic #6 looms right now, but I’ll be making runs of both those looms and #6 intermediates. Just today I completed 650 of the 5” flat needles. Two days ago I finished oiling 100 Walnut and 300 BEM #6 original looms. There are several very large orders I’ve accepted – and will be making those in the next few weeks. I hope to cease production by the middle of April.

No big sales are planned at this time, but who knows? A few dealers will be offered deals to buy all that are left of a few tools. Dealers are invited to request runs of anything in my price list – if possible I’ll accept them, but it all depends on a multitude of issues.

I’ve not advertised anything at all, but a few shops have coincidentally approached me about buying my business. One is an outstanding candidate and nearby. I’d love for my business to continue, though not as “Hokett Would Work”. If anything comes of this situation, I’ll announce it here……

I’ve absolutely loved the almost 25 years of producing high quality fiber tools. I’ve not sold anything that I was aware that was not just right. A few other tool makers and several dealers have gone out of their way to impune my practices or abilities. Many makers have attempted to copy my work, but it seems no one can do them justice. One dealer in particular took me for thousands and refuses to pay for what she owes. I’d bet that she was the little fat girl who is still angry that she was not chosen to be a cheerleader in high school. As a man of honor, I’ll wish her well, though through teeth tightly clenched. I’ve never ever taken advantage of anyone and never will, but she might break her leg when she’s running around the yard tonight barking. People take credit for tools that Cat and I designed. How can people such as these look in the mirror while they brush their teeth? A few people have ordered tools and equipment, promising to pay, then skipping out just like the little fat rejected cheerleader.

I will continue to do the very best I can, but with not so long hours, without any priorities, without any urgency. It bothers me that this transition is much later than it should have been. But, Cat and I will really enjoy taking more frequent drives in the Corvette, the old ’41 Ford pickup, and watching sunsets with our little Pepper dog. I honestly wish every person well. Unfortunately so many people are incapable of being “good people”. I’m not quitting – just changing horses and gears.

Thankfully and Respectfully,

Chicago Weavers

Here are several photos of projects from new weavers with Kimmy Compton in Chicago! All of the looms used in this beginner class were “imperfect” ones I donated to her. Hasn’t she done a great job of using my castaways? All of these young learning weavers display their very special projects.  Isn’t it neat to see brand new weavers looking so happy, or what!


Canadian Weavers

I just gotta share this – Kim McCollum of Edmonton, Alberta has a marvelous weaving shop and uses some of my tools to teach tapestry. These 4 photos are from a recent class that she had. Aren’t they wonderful! I love seeing such variety of samples from everywhere. I’m about to do a very large run of intermediate looms for her in my very last boards of Afzelia. Just watch them fly away!
Thanks, Kim

Four Tapestries

What variety comes with these four tapestries by Carolann Madden of Houston! I love these still mounted on the looms. Carolann has used my looms for some time and I really do appreciate her sharing her very nice examples. I wonder what she might be doing with them? I’ve had several customers in the past leave their finest work ON THE LOOM and display them that way. But, I’m certain these looms will continue to produce many more special pieces.

The Tiny Turned Beater is San Antonio, Texas Mesquite that came from a tree over 500 years old!  A few streets from where Cat and I lived there had a huge Mesquite tree that was leaning over her very old garage.  She asked a Texas A&M staff member to help save the tree.  He looked it over and responded that the tree was dead!  So, the lady, in her mid-90’s, having been born in the house, had the tree removed and stored in the old garage.  She interviewed woodworkers to ensure they would use the wood for projects rather than putting it in their BBQ grill to smoke meats…  I was so fortunate to be the first and was able to acquire most of the pieces.  Home I milled one piece and made an exceptional notion box for her.  When the finish cured I took it to her as an offer of appreciation for saving the wood from that tree.  She cried.  I feel so wonderfully blessed to have such an intense connection with special woods like that 500 year old Mesquite and still have a few chunks of the trunk that are totally viable.  I feel so blessed much moreso to have had such a connection with that very refined lady.

There are two projects using a Bird’s Eye Maple loom.  The loom with a very dark end is Afzelia – like the rest of the loom.  Several years ago I purchased a large quantity of that remarkable wood from the estate of a passed old woodworker.  There had been a fire in the warehouse years before which caused the very dark coloring on one side.  I thought that the planks partially burned were simply exceptional – making the wood throughout much more rich reddish brown.  Now, I have only a small amount of the wood left and am “rat holeing” it for personal use sometime.  I occasionally purchase exceptional examples of fine woods because they are beautiful, not having any particular project in mind.  Some other woods I have in that category include:  a chunk of actual Lignum Vitae about 12″ x 12″ x 36″ – must weigh 150#; Gabon Ebony 2″ x 12″ x 84″ – deepest purest black and largest piece of this Ebony I’ve even seen in my life; block of Afzelia Burl about 8″ x 8″ x 10″; and, a block of Amboyna Burl about 8″ x 8″ x 9″ – astounding burl features with eye p0pping deep coloring.  All of these will become very special pieces of functional art.

I LOVE what I do.