Sunday, June 26, 2016

Step Two

Life is always full of things to celebrate.
This week's big celebration is that Delilah and the guys,
Homer and Henry, arrived in Houston on Friday.
Woo Hoo!
These are my two quilts that were accepted
in the All Hands Around exhibit
at the International Quilt Festival Houston
in November.
Delilah is my grasshopper who is central in my quilt
based on Mary Oliver's poem, The Summer Day.
Homer and Henry are the two herons 
shown in my quilt, Larger Than Life.

Here's a bit of Delilah.

And a bit of Homer.

More photos as we get closer to November.
Life is very good!

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

A bit of stuff and Nos. 85, 86, 87 and 88

Life certainly changes too fast. I've been distracted from blogging and dyeing fabric
for weeks now. My oldest granddaughter and I visited Williamsburg a couple weeks ago;
it was her belated high school graduation trip -- great fun.
The day after we got home, I had outpatient surgery to remove the tip
of a sewing machine needle from a finger. Ouch! Both when it happened months ago
and during the recovery. The bandages made keyboarding challenging.
The healing process is going smoothly
The 'time off' gave me time to think about my next quilt
which may actually be two quilts on the same theme.

Okay, back to fabrics I've dyed.
Nos. 85 and 86 were attempts to get dark blacks via ice dyeing.
#85 mixed black with intense blue. Eh.
Nice texture but not black enough.

No. 86 mixed black and kelly green. Curious.
Not sure how these colors appeared, but the tyvek label was #86.

No. 87 is simply ultra violet.
I can always use more purply fabric.

No. 88 is simply basic red.

In between the trip, surgery, work and trying to blog, 
I enrolled in two Photoshop Elements class online
with the Pixeladies. Enjoyable and good stuff to learn. 
I highly recommend their classes.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

No. 80, 81, 82, 83 and 84

These are all ice dyes and were folded in some fashion
before adding ice and dye to the colander set-up.
No. 80 combines mixing red, mixing blue
and a bit of black.
I used golden yellow, but cannot see it.

No. 81 is the result of fire red and bright yellow.

No. 82 combines sun yellow, strong orange,
basic red and basic blue.

No. 83 is the result of ultra violet,
fuchsia and cobalt blue.
Folding created nice images.

No. 84 combined celadon, golden yellow
and mixing blue.

I hope you are enjoying this dyeing journey.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Nos. 76, 77, 78, and 79

These are all ice dyes using the colander and bucket set-up.
Several were twisted or accordion folded under the ice and dyes.
I love all the textures.

No. 76 is a mix of aquamarine, creamsicle
and celadon.

No. 77 mixed kelly green, caffeine buzz and
cobalt blue. I think it's rather dramatic.

No. 78 mixes avocado, rust orange and lemon yellow.

No. 79 is a half yard piece using the same colander and bucket set-up,
and was more crowded.
Dyes used were rust orange, basic brown and a bit of black.
I also used lime squeeze which did not show at all.

This project has been addictive at times. I still have 34 more pieces to share with you.
At some point, I want to think about how I will use them.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Nos. 71, 72, 73, 74 and 75

No. 71 used deep navy and iris
in an ice dye

No. 72
Painting with thickened dyes
using turquoise, sun yellow, avocado and chocolate brown

No. 73
Painting with thin dye on dry soda ash fabric
using aquamarine, cherry blush, and boysenberry

No. 74
Dye painting over thick print paste
using thick mixing blue on the bottom
then thick mixing red dye

No. 75
Painting with thick dyes on thick print paste
using sun yellow on top of chocolate brown

Thanks for following these. More to come.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Nos. 67, 68, 69 and 70

These two samples are the result of an ice dyed parfait
with Soft Orange on the bottom and Avocado on the top.

On the same day I did some other ice dyes in colanders.

#69 is Iris and Cherry Blush. I did a bit of a loose
accordion fold before the ice and dye.

#70 uses Lavender and Deep Navy.
#70 means I have reached my goal of 70 fabrics in this year
after my 70th birthday, but I cannot stop.
More to come.

Hope your day is as beautiful as ours is here in Westminster -
Spring at last!

Friday, April 1, 2016

Working with Some New Dye Colors

I bought some new dye powders from Pro Chem. 
To test them out, I did two pieces with each powder.
The darker shades used 2 T dye concentrate
and the lighter shades used 1 tsp of dye concentrate.

Soft Orange


Cherry Blush

Aqua Marine (I really love this color)


Chocolate Brown

What are your favorite colors?

Some Dyes from January 2016

 These were snow dyes using one color at a time. First is mixing blue.

Here's mixing red.

Some secondary colors. Mixing blue and mixing red

Turquoise and sun yellow

More results soon. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Number 49 -- a Snow Dye

Taking advantage of Jonas the snowmaker,
 I dyed this yard using dye powders on top of the snow.
My mix included basic blue, bright yellow,
sea grass and black.
Again, a surprise.

I had hoped it would end up as vibrant as it began.

The dyes, liquid or powder, react differently with snow
than with ice.
I want to keep playing and learning.

Hope you enjoyed a beautiful pink sunset sky tonight.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

#48 A snow dye attempt

This is my first attempt at snow dyeing. I used some dye solutions that were more than
six weeks old, but in the fridge. I used mixing red, sun yellow, indigo
and turquoise. It's softer than I hoped it would be.

Here's the cloth that was under the yardage. The pattern is from
the rack the fabric was on.

I think I will adjust my dye quantities the next time.
But I can wait a long time for more snow.
Enough is enough!

Hope you are warm and clear of snow.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Starting again

Whew, I took a long break from dyeing. There was Christmas, cookie making, a couple nasty infections, recovery time -- just like so many other people. Now, it's time to get moving again. I have been doing some free motion quilting on a large quilt. It's not ready for prime time, but it is coming along - finally.

And I returned to my dyeing project. I've started thinking about making a new quilt for my bed and want to think about the colors. So, I did a few ice dyes as tests for my quilt. Here they are:

Cobalt blue - maybe too dull.

I'm liking this grape.

Imperial purple is always nice, in my opinion.

Kelly green turned out too pale. May be overdyed.

And then we had a mammoth snow storm this past couple days. So, time to prepare some snow dyes.

For the above one, I used up some dyes that have been in the fridge for a bit. Below, I sprinkled dye powder on the snow.  I'll show results after the rinsing and washing.

I mixed new dye concentrates for these three. I'm up to #52.

Back to a bit of work hoping the snow plows will visit my street and parking lot.
Thanks for stopping by. 

Sunday, December 13, 2015


Sometimes, I just need to sew for the thrill of combining fabrics with a simpler plan than most of my work. This past week, I made 7 pillowcases for Ryan's Case For Smiles ( Formerly ConKerr Cancer, this organization gives pillowcases to children in hospitals to brighten their day. Of course, I found plenty of possible fabrics in my stash. I chose the fun pieces.

Some of the combinations may be a stretch, but I chose them with my youngest granddaughter in mind. She loves the crazier, the better. I also finished a Linus blanket, but forgot to take a photo. It always feels good to give to others, and even more so in this season of giving.

Hope your giving touches you as well. Karen

Thursday, December 10, 2015

#41, 42 and 43 -- A scarf and a surprise

The second half of the ice dyeing with the socks was a rayon circular scarf using imperial purple, fuchsia and brilliant blue. I ran out of ice, so this piece has more white than I would prefer. Nice outcome. I will wear it during the holidays.

Surprise -- interesting patterns appeared on the piece of fabric that I placed between the plastic grid and the socks and scarf -- a nice grid effect.

Of course, I had to play with getting more of that pattern. I made a double decker sandwich of plastic grid pieces and fabric and topped that with ice, then grape and cobalt dyes. Cool. I plan to do some larger pieces using this grid effect later. This piece is 10" x 20". On the left, you can see a bit of the circular grid used in one layer.

Tomorrow I'll share the charity pieces I did while taking a break from dyeing. I wanted to use some fabrics sitting alone and to make things to give away to brighten others' lives. What do you do for others during your holidays?
Peace, Karen

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Nos. 39 and 40 -- Fun Socks

I really love bamboo socks and I found two pair to ice dye last week using imperial purple, fuchsia and brilliant blue. Fun to wear on these chilly days and nights.

I also dyed a couple pieces of fabric using the same colors. Life was crazy for a week or so and kept me from pressing those pieces. I'll show them in a couple days.

Hope you have some quiet time in this busy season. 

Friday, November 27, 2015

Nos. 35 and 37 -- Decolourant

While cleaning up a mess of fabric, I found some pieces that I had dyed years ago - pieces just waiting for a bit of discharge. I used Decolourant gel on four pieces of dyed fabric. Only two were somewhat successful.

I used a bamboo stencil on the bottom and several texture 'stencils' on the top.

This has some promise for a small quilt.

This fabric began with a red and dark green surface. The Decolourant removed quite a bit of color, taking it down to the soft green shown here.

Hope you have had a lovely Thanksgiving and starting a relaxing weekend.

Thanks for stopping, Karen