Grad School Underway

SO MUCH READING. I’m a pretty fast reader, but reading history text books is slower going and the VOLUME of reading is staggering. But it’s started! Great group of people in the department, interesting discussions in class, and I like the urban downtown campus. I also seem to have volunteered to be the Treasurer of the Graduate History Students Association. Should be easy enough with my background in small business bookkeeping. Yay school! ūüôā

Added New Photos

Just a quick update to say that I added a handful of new photos to the gallery pages. Still lots more to come! I wish they were all “gallery” quality, but they still document my work.

Conferences Upcoming and CFPs

I completely missed writing a post for July! Granted, I was away for half the month to visit family, but still.

I’ve collected several¬†conference notices of¬†Calls For Papers (CFP). I’m wary of adding voluntary homework on top of starting my master’s program next month, but I guess that would be a good problem to have, right? As I evaluate each, I’m considering how my topic of Early Modern needlework and needlework pattern books could be interpreted through the lens of the conference theme. The exercise¬†helps me expand my research scope by turning it upside down and looking at it from new angles.

So I guess August will be all about writing abstracts to submit to 2016 conferences, and also writing my short talk for the 2015 Babel Meeting! I’ll be presenting October 11th, Session 26 – Books in and of the World: Objects and Interfaces, at Toronto University. I’ll¬†share images and research about how Early Modern needlework pattern books were created for destruction. In case you are interested in learning more, here is a link to the full program. Maybe I’ll see you there!¬†Babel 2015 program

Winterthur Textile Study Day

I wrote a short blog post about my trip to Winterthur in Wilmington, Delaware for a study day with fellow members of the Textile Society of America. You can read it here and see some of my photos from the day.

Challenge Accepted

I have accepted the offer from Montreal’s Concordia University to enroll in their Master of Arts program in History! I’ll be back in a classroom starting in September, getting serious again about my research, and maybe even doing some work as a teaching assistant. Exciting! In the meantime, I’m reading a book on Old English grammar, plying my needle, and working to improve my French. Always learning something new, and I do love a good challenge!¬†About Concordia

Academic Award!

I received the 2015 National Fellowship Chapter Honorary Mention Award with financial reward for academic excellence! I applied through my undergrad university, Arizona State University, for the Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society’s annual national fellowship for new graduate students. While I didn’t score the big money, I’m very pleased to accept the financial support and to know that my association is rooting for me!

Grad school

Now that all my applications for grad school are completed, I am turning back to updating my website. I’d like to be happy with it soon so that once school starts I can just blog about my research and latest needlework projects. The learning curve is steep! But I think I’m almost there. Thank you for being patient with my work-in-progress and for finding me on Pinterest and Etsy. <3

July Awesomeness

The month of July zipped right by. I was traveling for half of it, and keeping up with the World Wide Web is always more of a challenge on the road.

My trip to London was amazing. The week I spent at The School of Historical Dress was so special and I learned sooo much. You folks in the London area are so extremely lucky!! Working with Luca and Claire was incredibly¬†inspiring, and learning from Jenny and the school’s collection just blew my mind. To commemorate, I finally got Seventeenth Century Women’s Dress Patterns 1. I will go back some day, for sure.

The research I did at the British Library and the Victoria and Albert Museum also rocked my world. Who’d have ever thought that I would hold in my bare hands a 16th century book filled with hand-waterpainted embroidery designs?? It has become clear to me from this trip that the artifacts are as important to me as the information they contain. I was emotionally moved by the experience of handling them, and found myself treating them with reverence. An important insight as I pursue grad school options.

And I also enjoyed a wonderful Georgian picnic at Chiswick House in London! I met friends new and old, many whom I’m sure I will see again. I wore my blue silk taffeta francais gown that I’ve been working on retrimming.


When I got home I just had to shake things up (a reflection of my internal experience on my trip?), with the result being a dramatically¬†reorganized¬†studio, so I’ll be back to my needlework tomorrow! I feel like I now have the confidence to take on a few of the projects that I’ve had in mind, but been reluctant to start.


Exponential Education

The more I learn, the more I add to my list of interesting things to learn about. Some days it seems like specializing and narrowing the focus of my interests would be a good idea. Although, I recently received advice that staying general (as a history scholar) is more valuable these days, since so many people are drawn into specializing. I think this is on my mind a lot right now, because I am also considering how to simplify my hobbies and daily life to create more time for big projects. Add this to the pile of “things to think about.” sigh. ūüėČ

Online palaeography course!

Yippee!! I found an online palaeography course which will help me prepare for my research visit at the Victoria and Albert Museum and the British Library in July. Learning to read medieval and early modern writing is very specialized and not all universities seem to offer it. So here is a link for those who are also interested. The introductory section is FREE! It looks like the program is still under development for the more advanced sections. I am very happy to be able to prep for my research visit, but also that I can do this while I am preparing to apply for grad school. Check it out!