Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Sharing plants!

Our local herb society meetings are the greatest, full of talented, generous women. Not only are they gardeners, a lot of them are textile artists, artists and crafters. This is Veronica's (our President) first weaving, she designed and wove it on a child's loom! Beautiful, I love how it looks with her outfit. She is also a master knitter.

Our snacks are always great and I loved this punch made with Rose scented geranium leaves and lemons. If your interested in the recipie let me know.

This months meeting we met at PJ's art studio and shared plants and seeds to get our Spring gardens going. Marsha is showing us how to take clippings from plants, dip them in root tone and plant to get great results.

And we begin, too much fun. We all went home with lots of new plants and seeds.

One of our members makes wonderful natural creams, soaps etc. We couldn't resist buying them.

Some of my herb clipping, Hot and Spicy oreganos, French tarragon and rose geranium. I also have lots of seeds planted.

My daughter and her family sent me flowers for my birthday. Thank-you I love them! When the flower start to wilt I will pick the iris and try dying silk with them, more on this later.

Speaking of fabric dying, my neighbors cut their rhododendrons back last week (your suppose to trim them right after they bloom in the spring or else you cut off all the new buds), they had a huge pile to discard and one ended up in my yard, I thought "some one must want me to try it in the dye pot".

So, I wet down some of my premordated (with alum) wool and rolled them up with the leaves, then steamed it for a good hour. I now have them in a plastic bag in a warm place working their magic. Next week we'll see the result.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Silk Egg Dying

Last week I had some of my girlfriends over and we dyed Easter Eggs. I saw this on "Martha" a few years ago and have been anxious to try it. You start out with raw eggs and pieces of 100% silk, can be old ties, scarves etc. The more contrast the better. I had scraps of tie silk.

You wrap the egg in the silk, pattern side toward the egg. Secure with a twistie.

Wrap white fabric over the silk to catch the dye that bleeds off so it doesn't run onto other eggs. We used PFD fabric hoping it might dye the fabric also. (It didn't) I put the eggs in my stainless steel and enamel pots, filled them with water and about 6 tablespoons of white vinegar per pot (for 10 eggs). Brought the water to a boil then simmered them for 40 minutes. When they cooled we unwrapped them.

What a beautiful surprise, the eggs picked up all the small patterns and colors from the silk. They say you can use the silk more than once but mine looked much lighter in color (used up). I did save my white fabric to used next year, this will be an annual project with my bee. This was a wonderful way to dye the eggs. I don't know if you want to eat them though, 40 minutes is a long time to cook eggs and the chemical dye from the silk?? Double click on the picture to see the egg patterns up close and personal!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Great Herb Shop link

I've been busy machine quilting my grandson's Christmas quilt and doing Spring cleaning, when it finally warms up around here for good I want to be outside. Since I didn't think you wanted to see a picture of the Christmas quilt in progress I took a quick picture of some rabbits I made years ago. Their made from cotton quilt batting with jointed arms and legs, the one I tea dyed. The eggs Deb H. also made me years ago from hand-dyed fabrics. Their 6-sided pieced eggs. Too wonderful! For all my Natural dying and Herb friends I found the best Herb shop on line- http://www.horizonherbs.com They have every herb you can think of, culinary, medicinal and Natual dying seeds, I'm so excited. I ordered madder root (my favorite dye plant), Navajo tea and dyers chamomile seeds. I cannot wait to put in my new natural dye garden. Make sure you have time to enjoy when you go on this site, there is so much great information.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Spring and pansies

I have Spring Fever so bad, warm weather has been very slow in coming to this part of Michigan. Pansies are the answer. They are one of the first flowers you can plant as they can like it a little cooler, they really are not that happy during the very hot months of summer. I found these new type of Pansies their edges are ruffly. I don't know how well you can see it in the picture.

I love them, they are so cute.
I've been working on the next lattice strip on my Family Tree quilt. This lattice represents my husband's grandfather who lived in California. They had a rail road near by and he used to jump into the box cars and hitch a ride across the state and country. His son (my husband's dad) raised rabbits as a child.
I needle-felted mohair yarn in for the rabbits tail. Now to embroidering in the story.

  • Deb Hardman
  • Allie Aller
  • Jenny Bowker Cairo