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The end or the beginning...

Posted by Margaret Barth on

They say every beginning has an end. In my case, this couldn't have been further from the truth. But let's not get ahead of ourselves. This wisdom only came after I wasn't in it, I believe you call it hindsight.

A funny thing happens to me while I'm learning new materials, I become obsessed. I become part Sherlock Holmes with a  Salvatore Dali sensibility. There are no boundaries and anything is possible in design. While an in-depth study of the innate characteristics of the material. There was one more big piece I was overlooking, the right tool. It was gonna be a long, frustrating weekend.

After too many days of pure failure, I realized I needed to contact a Professor at one of the best Textile Schools in Philadelphia. If anyone could help with this, Pam could. And if she couldn't she would know who could. I called her immediately, she was in her studio and told me to come over. 

My faith was restored and soon I had my hands on what they called a merrow machine. I was given access to an instructor's classroom between classes. Not only did I have my hands on the tool I needed, I was given all the information necessary to get a machine. How were we ever gonna get a $1000 machine? For the time being, I decided to focus on all prototypes and patterns. Get the products made and take them to the President, then Darcy. 

I don't know why I was so nimble or so inspired? Was it my last attempt to save a sinking ship? Or was it my new love affair with sweaters and knits? Ideas were plentiful and the merrow machine was my best buddy, except when it became unthreaded..then I cursed like a sailor and preyed on the mercy of a student. The four spool machine required a diagram to thread properly.  The patience of Job to adjust the tension of the threads each time I changed materials or tried mixing different weights. Time wasn't on my side.

I checked in, the President was calling our weekly meeting and wanted to know if the new prototypes were ready. I swallowed hard, she knew the answer. I explained I needed more time, maybe another week. I only had two samples and I had promised five or six. She wasn't happy. She also knew I needed a machine.

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