Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Native American Pow Wow

This past weekend I was going to try dying some wool fabric with dandelion root and lily of the valley leaves, but after studing my books I decided I was wasting my time, my books talked about dying with the flower and leaves of dandelion not the roots, and to dye with lily of the valley you should mordant with chrome. I never use chrome only alum which is not harmful, when I finish mordanting with alum I pour the left over water on my acid loving plants, holly, etc. So, I spent Saturday planting my gardens and could hardly walk that night. On Sunday I went to the Veterns Pow Wow with my husband. He is part Native American and sits on a native drum. We go to quite of few pow wows. I enjoy looking (and buying) beads to use on my wallhangings. I also get a lot of hand quilting done while were there, I love to sit and listen to the drum and watch the dancers.
This is a picture of some of the traditional dancers. They have eagle feathers, beadwork, and traditional clothing.
Traditional women dancers, carrying their shaws and eagle feather fans. The traditional dancers are the oldest dance style in North America. Head women dancer.

Close up of their shaws, one is appliqued with a beadworked (rose) leather bag on her back, and a beadworked shaw that matched her skirt and leggins.This is the drum my husband sits on, Northern Spirit, with some of the members.

This little girl is a "fancy" dancer. Their dance represents a butterfly. They start out slow with arms tucked in like a cocoon, then dance faster with the drum beat, with their shaw out like butterfly wings. Her shaw is beautiful with applique and a bead work "bib". Theres a picture of the back of her shaw a couple down.
This is a men's traditional dancer, he had some beautiful applique on his outfit. Eagle feather bustle and hair piece and a finger woven sash.
The back of her shaw.
These two are brother and sister from Mexico with Aztec heritage. Their traditional regilia was so beautiful and different. We usually don't see this type of dancers up here.

This is a picture of the back of his headdress. Notice the different native bird feathers, peacocks and tropical birds.

And the back of her headdress. Some of the Traders here, my friend Sandy (on the left) she makes mens traditional ribbon shirts, last winter she made 100 to sell.

Her husband is a master beader. This is a picture of two of the knife holders he made my husband. His bead work has won numerous awards.

Lee, a native woodern flute maker. This native lady and her son make black ash baskets. They start by cutting down the tree and pounding the log to make the strips. Their baskets were beautiful and belong in competiton.

Windi, selling her hand made drums. She also makes a lot of bead work jewerly.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Great information on natural fabric dying

I thought I'd show you my two favorite books on natural dying. I find these two are the most helpful. This weekend I hope to start dying wool fabric, I'm trying two plants, dandelion root and lily of the valley leaves. I've used lily of the valley leaves before but it was on cotton and it turned out pale yellow, I read on the internet its suppose to be green. We'll see. The dandelion root is suppose to be red/violet. (neither of these plants are in these books) I also have these 2 documentary's (DVD'S) on natural dying. They are great, I bought them on line from the Textile Museum in Washington D. C. Their web site is I've begun machine quilting this queen size quilt for our camper. This quilt is nothing like I would ever make. First of all I don't enjoy piecing and this quilt is full of pieced stars, etc. and I hate to use someone else pattern. Also, the colors are not me at all! Why did I buy the fabrics, I loved the vintage look of the collection, especially the sea shell fabric and the collection came with a little heavier woven bigger flower fabric that reminded me of vintage drapes (the star points are some of the fabric) and it has wonderful little polka dot fabrics for the backgrounds. So, some of us in my bee ordered the kit and pattern, then we swapped fabrics, I took the bigger print fabric and sea shell and gave away my little flower print . I'm practicing machine quilting feathers and organic shapes without marking them, I also do not enjoy marking quilting lines. I'm not that great at feathers especially in triangles but I figure by the end of this quilt I will be.
Deb, Kay and Deb C. also bought this collection!

Thursday, May 15, 2008


My son-in-laws birthday is this week, I wanted to make him something (he loves the quilts I make him and really appreciates them). He owns his own business, which is a exotic sports car club. I went on his web site and printed off the opening page onto fabric. I sewed on boarders and black cording on the edge and stuffed it into a pillow. My husband and I've begun doing spring yard work, I bought this new "specimen" shrub. I love how they trained the trunk to grow in a cork screw with the little puffs of branches.
This is the back view, you can see the trunk better, it is so cute. I've also planted Calendula, which is this years "herb of the year" and is suppose to be a good plant for natural dying along with a lot of medicinal uses. I'm looking forward to trying it and some other new plants. I'm beginning to set up my dye studio and am anxious to get started.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

A little more art from Mayo

There is just so many wonerful pieces at Mayo, I have to show a few more, I love all their textiles, I want to travel the world and collect my own! They do have lots and lots of other traditional art pieces there, it is worth a trip there just to see their art collection.
Turkish Kilim Woven wool, mid 19th century Turkey
Child's jacket and 3 baby carriers. 20th century China (I had to photograph everything from the side so you wouldn't see the glass reflections quite so much).Detail hand embroidery

Detail Detail

Description Blown glass Martin Blank U.S.

"The Good Gramdees" hand blown glass, bronze. 2001 Dan Dailey U.S.

Ceromonial Banner Gold wrapped yarns on cotton ground. late 19th century Indonesia.
Hand carved wooden paddles, early 20th centruy Indonesia.


Friday, May 2, 2008

More art from Mayo

Ok, I'm going to try to explain John's medical week at Mayo. This is how Mayo works and it's amazing. We went there with a few appointments scheduled through Tuesday but ended up staying until Fri. with our last appointment at 3:30. He started Mon. morning with a blood test and a chest x-ray, then a 9:30 appointment with the cardiologist. By 11:30 a.m. he was in exploratory heart surgery, they put in another stint, he now has 12, but the Dr's. didn't think that was his main problem (he has shortness of breath and chest pains, a lot). So, the rest of week he had many more tests even meeting with a pulmonary specialist who ran breathing tests (they wanted to make sure he had no blood clots or exercise induced asthma). He passed all the tests. Some of the test weren't even scheduled until May 6 & 7, but you go to the dept. and check in and they try to work you in, it's a wonderful system because you always get in. While he waited I rode the elevator and photographed the art. The last day we met with the cardiologist and he told us John as abnormal small artery (vessel) disease. There is no medical procedure to cure it. He changed some of his meds. and diet, and told him to walk a lot. When we arrived home our local Heart Rehab center called wanting to set up John's heart rehab schedule, we had no idea what they were talking about. Mayo had called them and told them what rehad. John needed and what they wanted him to do! They also sent all of his records to our family Dr. and instructed him on the meds. and treatment. What a medical system, we differently made the right decision to go there. Embroidery Silk, Early 19th century. Lakia Uzbekistan Try to read this description, its amazing the time put into this textile.

Andy Warhol 1970 Silk Screen. How can you compare all the tine and love put into textile art to modern art, and Mr. Warhol's sell for millions. (was that bad to say, you know what I mean, textile art is just starting to be valued for it true worth).

Fused and slumped glass. Klaus Moje 1994 Australia.
Chilka ceremonial dancing blanket. Goat hair, cedar bark and wool. circa 1879's Tlingit Tribe North America

Robe warp-faced, resit-dyed "ikat" technique. Silk & Cotton circa 1850 Uzbekistan, Central Asia

Painted folding screen, Japan 16th century.

I'll see you next week with a few more photos, there is so much art at Mayo we didn't have time to see it all, inside or out. Also, as you walk in the front lobby there's someone playing the grand piano.

  • Deb Hardman
  • Allie Aller
  • Jenny Bowker Cairo