Ahead of myself…

I published two posts on the same day, and it’s not because I’m doing so much or have that much to show you. It’s just that I didn’t pay attention to the dates on the scheduler. I knew I’d miss a day or two while I painted the bathroom and did some yard work, so I thought I’d be smart and space things out…does not work if you don’t pay attention to details!

Last night I could not stand it any more! I haven’t done any sewing or quilting to speak of for quite a while, so I headed down to the studio to do something–anything–with thread and needle or machine! I’ve been making things with the same pile of scraps for so long that I couldn’t face them anymore, but I had a small piece all set to be quilted, so that’s what I did!

I felt like I was learning how to quilt all over again, so I stuck with what was easiest. All over spirals and spiral squares make me feel very comfortable. I can almost do them in my sleep.

I used a new variegated thread, since there was already every color under the sun in the top, and my favorite lime green in the bobbin. Of course my hubby always likes the back of a quilt when you can see the quilting very clearly!

So simple and yet so satisfying when you are hungry for a bit of sewing! I’m not sure, yet, but I may hang onto this one unfinished. There is a possibility that it could grow into something larger, since I have that huge pile of scraps that I would like to use up. The sad truth is that the scrap piles continue to grow and I’m just trying to fool myself into believing that I will ever in my lifetime use them all up!!! I guess the fun is in the trying, though, isn’t it?

Done dyeing yet?

Maybe you’re tired of looking at the results of my dye-time playing, but if I don’t record it, I’ll forget what’s what!

Parfait dyeing is a favorite of mine, so I thought I’d do it again, in two ‘matching’ sets. I got everything all set up.

The plan was to mix a set of colors and then take a bit out of each dye cup and make a paler version of the same parfait set…which is what I did. Thought I knew exactly how much fabric would fit in each jar, but I was wrong! I put more liquid in each jar this time as I was loading them up and took a few less pieces/colors than the last time!

You can see a color difference from the start. Can’t wait to see the finish!

So I had color mixed and nothing ready to use it on…but I really like the results of this simple twist and tie, so that’s what I used.

One color for each—thinking daisy or sunburst shapes here.  We shall see!

I’ll report on how they turned out next time.

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!

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.

Make-It-Take-It

This week will bring a new dye day, but mostly the emphasis will be on paint and our new stamps. We will have thickened dye, regular dye, stamps, stencils, maybe some thermofax screens…it might turn out to be a circus, but I know we’ll all have fun!

I started to get myself organized, and I am continually surprised by what I find on my shelves when I start digging!

I can’t remember how old these are, but I’m going to use them, to see if they still work and to get rid of them! I think I’ll wrap them shibori-style around a pvc pipe…well, probably around a wine bottle. I’ve found the bottles are easier to handle, especially when I’m working with small pieces of fabric.

Then I’ve been trying to play with folded shibori and I have several pieces ready to go. Can’t wait to see how they turn out!

And again–what surprises surface when you go digging! I found these blocks and only vaguely remember making them. I combined some painted blocks with dyed blocks and didn’t get any further than this.

This is my favorite, and I think I will finish these up to be a small wall quilt.

What I was really looking for was fabric that needed more added to it….and I sure found a lot of it!

Hope some of it comes out of the day useable!

And the beauty shot of the day—AJ was playing around with the special effects on the ipad camera and now I’m all set up for Halloween!

I don’t think I’m too crazy about those special effects!

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.