The Workshop

January 10, 2013

Farzana works most days in the workshop, and when I’m not running around town all day trying to get registered with the local police or get a visa to Kazakhstan, I work with her.For the most part felt-making has been a self-taught experience for me and it is such a joy being in the company of women who also love this work.

The pictures below are all from the workshop.

 

making scarves                    scarf making view from the workshophome and kyrgyzstan 145 view from the workshopThe Holy Grail

.  home and kyrgyzstan 142

 

This last picture is the piece I am currently working on . . .  Farzana is very particular about the thickness of her pre-felt; first mine was too thick, then it was too thin, and now . . .we will see!

The pictures out the window are the view from the workshop,  and the green bucket, as Farzana says, is where Seven Sisters (the name of the business) makes all their money!

In many ways it is very familiar going to the felt workshop most days and settling into a world of wool and water, but then there is the ever constant reminder that “this is not America baby!”  (another of Farzana’s many funny pronouncements in English)

I am attempting to learn Kyrgyz, and the one trick to this is that much of what I hear around me is Russian.  The family I am living with is Kyrgyz, but the main language spoken in Bishkek is Russian, and half the time Farzana’s family is speaking Russian, half the time Kyrgyz. It gives my head reason to spin, but I don’t think learning two languages at once is in the cards.

Farzana’s English is coming along quite well, and it is it’s own challenge attempting to teach someone a language when we have no shared language to communicate in, but we do surprisingly well . . .it’s all about the laughter!

 

 

 

 

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Hollie January 31, 2013 at 3:59 pm

Mary, I can hear you laughing from hear!!! Ok, so maybe not but I can imagine your laughter when you write about it as if you are right next door!!! Thanks for writing!!!

Reply

Patty Sampson February 25, 2013 at 10:56 am

Hi Mary,
I have been enjoying your blog entries! You are a long way away, but you have been in my thoughts!!
I am curious to know what is in the green bucket that produces income???
You dining experiences sound very eclectic….who ever would have thought of sushi and horse meat at one meal!

Reply

mary March 1, 2013 at 12:10 pm

Hello!
The same day you wrote I was busy repairing my wool pants I made that I wore sledding the other day. I swear I was sitting on a sled, but somehow managed to tear a small hole in the bottom of the pants- it was well worth it.
The bucket is a bit of the Holy Grail of the workshop. Farzana dyes all of her scarves in that bucket, and so often, even though much care goes into the design and patterns on the scarves, it’s the colors that people are attracted to. Recently I have been making lots of scarves with Farzana, she is busy filling orders and needs help getting things finished up. It’s good work, and I like the scarves, so Otlak may begin offering silk and wool scarves in the near future!
Unfortunately my camera battery is kaput at the moment, and the charger I bought isn’t working. I am hoping to post a few more pictures before I go- but we’ll see.
Looking forward to seeing you and sewing together when I get home!
Mary

Reply

Patty Sampson February 25, 2013 at 10:56 am

Hi Mary,
I have been enjoying your blog entries! You are a long way away, but you have been in my thoughts!!
I am curious to know what is in the green bucket that produces income???
Your dining experiences sound very eclectic….who ever would have thought of sushi and horse meat at one meal!

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: