Monday, October 28, 2013

Dyeing a colour wheel with Procion.

I've spent the last couple of days dyeing a colour wheel (well, ok, a colour 'line') using procion dyes.  I've made a strong mix of dyes (perhaps too strong, I was rinsing forever!!) but I'm pretty pleased with how rich the colours are.  I've used the cotton print cloth from Dharma Trading.  It's a mercerized cotton and seems to take the dyes quite well.
Oh, and I dyed a bunch of threads as well.  I wound them up on my Ashford "Niddy Noddy" and it worked a treat!!
I seem to be ignoring some of my other courses but am pleased to be making a bit of progress with the Kemshall class!!  At last!!
I'll be back.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Monoprinting daisies

This is detail of a small quilt that I made last year.  I started with a monoprint using fabric paints of some daisies that I had earlier painted in watercolour.  I stitched like crazy and bound the little quilt in black with red accents.  I called it "The Space Between" and it was juried into the Canadian National Quilt Show last May. That was exciting!!
Today I have made up another batch of dyes and I feel as if maybe this is the start of some fabric work again.  I really haven't done much in quite a few months.  I'm still working on the Quilting and Patchwork class offered by the Kemshalls on their Design Matters site (it's a great course).  So far we've been working with paper and paint so this is my first go at fabric pieces in a while. I'm trying to settle on a colour palette....such a hard job because I love all colours, pastel colours to jewel colours.  And who can forget the drama of black and white??!!  What a decision.  I'm still floundering about trying to decide.  More dyeing tomorrow to see if I can come closer to a satisfactory solution!!
I bought Ann Johnston's new DVD on dyeing fabric (available on her website).  It is SO inspirational.  I have taken a few classes with her and she is a wonderful and wonderfully generous instructor.  And her DVD is also exceptional.
I feel as if I'm wandering here.  I'm going to wander off and press my rinsed out fabrics.
I'll be back.  In the meantime, check out these links.....

Sunday, October 13, 2013

To blog or not to blog...Is that really a question?

Blogging is such a bizarre thing.  And it weighs on one, whether one is posting or not.  It speaks of one's work output, or lack thereof.  Of how one spends one's time.  And then there is Facebook and Twitter and all those other ways to pass the time or to get lost in time or maybe just to lose time.  (It seems I have a facebook account but I don't post anything there...either!)  My goal this year was to enter two shows.  I've entered three juried shows and  got into all three (not boasting, I'm pretty amazed! and while I haven't sold anything, truth to tell, I'm pretty relieved about that actually) and I've been in two other shows besides.  And there are two more coming up.  But then that brings up the whole question of showing and selling and pricing and all that maddening stuff.  I find it all pretty overwhelming.  And then there is the pressure of needing more work for future shows.  And I feel as if I've lost some of the fun along the way. So I'm working on the idea of working and keeping it fun.  Not pressured.  I feel that if showing is all about selling then maybe I need to rethink the whole thing.  Retirement should be about fun, I'm pretty sure! Maybe all I need to do is show up.
So I'm going for the cups of tea (and coffee, of course) and the good reads.  I've really enjoyed my garden this year and I'm taking a photography class and a drawing class.
I've finished a couple of the modules in the Kemshall's Quilting and Patchwork class and I'm itching to start the next module.  I've discovered that I love dyeing fabric and I'm still having fun with watercolours.  And there are those two precious little grandsons not to mention their mums and dads.  And my guy.  Life is good.
I'm back.....