First time for me…

It’s nice to know that there are still ‘fiber firsts’ in my life, after all my years of playing with textiles. Until today, I had never made a book cover!

As usual, I tripped over some fabric and that triggered the idea. I’ve saved cut-offs from quilts that have been trimmed up, knowing that someday I would use them for something! Today was the day.

Started out like this, overlapping some pieces and butting together others.

It changed a tiny bit in the construction, but this was the general configuration. I thought that I would embellish it like crazy, but changed my mind. This will end up as a gift and I’m not sure the recipient would like that as much as I would. For this first one, I’ll stick with colorful and plain!

This was so fun and easy that I want to make more! Wish I had a book collection to cover up. Oh, goodness…maybe I’ll make an art journal…another thing that I never, ever thought I’d make. Hmmmm….it could happen!

Wet surprise!

If you have ever tried sun printing with pre-treated fabrics, you know that you typically get results that look like these.

I was never too happy with them. I know there are other colors available now and that you can do this with paint, but these results never made me want to try anything further with this technique.

And then along comes a post of FB from someone, somewhere that I don’t even know…they put these pre-treated pieces between plastic and glass and wet them. I could not believe that a little water could make such a difference!

I had several pieces left from my original package and I figured I had nothing to lose. Wow! I love the results!!!

Nothing scientific about what I did…spritz some water and lay them out. I’m sure there is a corrolation between amount of water and results, but that doesn’t concern me. Here is a close up of each piece and I can’t wait to use them!

Of course I don’t know exactly WHAT I’m going to do with them, but I love them! What a fun and happy experiment!

Phew-dye day done!

This post will be picture heavy and word light!

Ready to iron!

Got my dye day fabrics all rinsed, washed, ironed and ready to use. There are a few that will need more ‘stuff’ done to them, but for the most part, they are ready to be added to the pile of dyed fabric already on my shelves that I’m still not using! But I will, I will, someday!

First off, the thickened dye stamping that I forgot the soda ash until after it was hanging on the line–most of the dye remained in the fabric! I’m happy with the runs and the fuzziness and want to add more to it.

Lessons learned: Don’t forget the soda ash, either in the fabric or the dye, if you want a sharper image. Don’t try to stamp in an area where the breeze can blow your fabric around! It’s easier to stamp on smaller pieces of fabric.

Took a number of oddball pieces that I thought were ugly, threw them all in a bag and added 3 colors of red dye that I had left toward the end of the day.

They came out looking all intentional and coordinated and I love them now!

Remember all the tied, folded and clamped pieces I had?

 

Here’s how they turned out—

Particularly love these two and want to do those folds again with different colors.

The fabric that I hung on the line and squirted dye onto–again with the forgotten soda ash, added later–came out very pretty. Of course not as intense as when it’s wet and not rinsed out, but I like it.

Before

After

And the parfait dyeing? Really like this stack of fabrics. I think they are a natural for a fall leaf quilt of some kind.

I’d like to spend all this week playing with more of this stuff, but I do have a couple of projects that I had forgotten have a due date. They must get done! Oh–just had a brain flash! I can add some stamping to both of those projects and it will work! Hooray! More stamp playing coming up!

 

 

Parfait dyeing

It’s not a new technique, but it’s been a while since I’ve done it…I most always love the results, but find them hard to use. Basic instructions, if you don’t know, are to layer fabric, dye liquid, soda ash liquid, fabric, dye, soda, scrunching and stuffing until the container is full. I like tall, thinner containers, but whatever container you use, the results seem better if you stuff it full and tight.

So here’s what my jar o’fabric looks like, full and processing.

That bright yellow at the bottom stayed like that because I stuffed this jar so very, very tightly! The rest of jar full looks a lot like mud, but it’s surprising to see when you take it out.

In order, from the bright yellow on the right to the gold-brown on the left. I did make a color ‘error’ and added yellow again after purple. Mixing complementary colors will always get you a brown or gray, but this one isn’t bad. Very earthy colors.

Here’s a little video close-up of these, so you can see the colors a bit better.

The colors mix more if the fabric is loosely packed into the container, but the whole point is to get this variegated effect, so when you try it, pack ’em in!

I have more to rinse out…..I dyed more fabric than I thought!

 

 

 

Screw ups teach, too!

Dye and paint day–always a day of experiments and the unknown.  Sometimes it’s just a typical hunk of fabric and globs of color. AJ was helping me on the rinse out of fabrics and said he really liked this one best.

That was NOT the screwed up piece. I was trying out thickened dye and stamps on this piece.

I’m liking the design and the color is actually a nice, dark blue. But after I had it stamped, I realized that it was NOT the soda soaked fabric and I had not added any soda ash to the dye mixture. I can’t wait to see what happens in the wash…even if it turns out to be a pale whisper of this, I can work with it. But I learned to take a bit more time and get the right combo of fabric and dye. I also learned that I am not fond of stamping with thickened dye but I need to do more of it before the final verdict is in. I have not used it with stencils or screens yet and I think it’s better suited to both of those methods.

I also love to hang fabric on the line and drip dye colors. I think I also neglected to soda ash this fabric! I will plead distraction, but this is a really dumb mistake.

I’m going to let today’s rain rinse this out but I may spray a little soda ash on it just to see what happens! I’m going to do a color comparison afterwards…

I sprayed soda ash on the blue and white one, too. It was already wet from the rain and starting to run, but I think it looks kind of cool with the blue running down. It will be very nice if the soda ash fixes some of the dye to the fabric after the fact. It may be like the way deconstructed screen printing works and give me an unexpectedly good result. We shall see………………….

Now to get to the rest of the rinse out…stay tuned.

I have stamps!

Finally, with my Wacky Quilter friends, I took time to use that basket of stampmaking supplies. Well, a teeny, tiny portion of them anyway. I opted to only use the self-adhesive stuff that I have; no carving, no extra gluing, no glue gun.

Cut some out myself and some are pre-cut.  Tons of foam shapes in the kids craft department.

See the paper on the one on the left below? These strips have adhesive on two sides, so at first thought, you  might wonder how you can print with them. Simple solution–just put some paint on them and let it dry before you use them!

I have a few substrates left…

Next week I’m having another dye–or paint–day, and I’ll be using them, each and every one! And maybe a few more will get made before then, too.

Aaaaand–drum roll, please!–the Crooked Cross quilt is done, except for the label!

The label consists of 5 extra blocks that I couldn’t use on the front. I’m adding crooked crosses around the edges and will write the pertinent info in the white spaces. I’m so excited that it’s done…and the deadline is November! I’m sooooo ahead of schedule on it. Hooray!

Tomorrow starts summer time with the grandson. We get to have him two days a week and one overnight. Every week! May not get tons of sewing done, because the days we don’t have him are recovery days. He’s a busy guy and we have to work hard to keep up with him.  Get ready for lots of smooches, big guy!!!

Stampmaking

Next on my agenda is finally getting around to using the pile of stuff I’ve accumulated for stampmaking.

I have shapes to stick onto bases and shapes to trace and shapes that I have no idea where I got them!

Noodles and circles and wood bases and acrylic bases and a ton of self sticking foam.

I’m trying to corral this all into one basket, since I’ll be taking it all to a meeting of the Knot Even Quilters on Thursday. There may be some things left behind.

I found these white metal frames…somewhere…and I think I’m going to try them out for stamping also.

And, of course, there is good ol’ glue gun stamps!

I like using these by painting with the flat side up and laying the fabric over the top. They also give a unique effect when you use the ‘bumpy’ side for a less than perfect print.

Next week we’ll get together again to use what we have made, as well as have all our dye day stuff available. Fun times ahead.