Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Playing with Summer flowers

For my Herb Societies August picnic I taught the members how to Eco- print silk scarves with flowers.  (learned from
All summer I prepared for this, I grew as many dye flowers as I could, picking them every evening and drying them. Ordered 40 silk scarves.
We met at one of the members farm, a perfect place to pick more flowers to add to the scarves.
Decorated with one of my herb quilts.


Hung my silk scarves to give them flower ideas.

Of course we had a potluck, herbalist are the best cooks.  Have you ever seen a prettier salad?

Long tables were set up, flowers set out and the fun began.

I took most of the scarves home, steamed them, and gave them back to the members so they could unroll them.

Right outside the barn was a large tansy plant. Members tucked the blossoms in with other flowers.

Back at home I mordant wool fabric, rolled it up with dark red dahlias and red blanket flowers. Tied it tight and placed it in the freezer for a week.
No steaming. This also was learned from
her book "Eco Colour"

I haven't opened it yet, I now have it in a plastic bag sitting in my refrigerator for a week, checking it everyday to make sure there's no sign of mold. Next week the reveal!

My back porch is so beautiful this year.

 With such a hot summer and lots of water it almost looks like they plants are taking over. Kind of like the movie "Little Shop of Horrors".

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Dyeing Mandales & Japanese Itajmine

I keep thinking my life can't get any busier than summer arrives with the grandchildren off from school, I take care of them a few days a week in addition to helping my parents everyday, go to work and then on top off it all we decide to get a new kitchen! What was I thinking! But now it is done, complete remodel, new cabinets, tile backsplash and quartz counter tops. Love it. I painted all last weekend and am now I'm working on getting everything put back away.
I did squeeze in a little time for myself this summer. The American Quilters Society brought their quilt show to Grand Rapids and I took a few dyeing classes. This first one was called Frozen Mandalas. We learned how to fold and manipulate the fabric to form a mandala. Lay ice over the folded up fabric and pour on the dyes. I wasn't sure how it would turn out but it worked.
I wish I could remember the instructor's name to give her credit, she did a fabulous job. Carole if you do please put it in comments.

Another one I made.

We also made several other "tie dye" pieces.

I have a challenge going on with Kay and Carole who were also in the class.
Hopefully next year we will meet and show our completed quilt pieces made from our dyed fabrics.
This was  synthetic dye not natural.


From our India inspired mandalas to Japanese inspired Itajmine.

Which involves folding, resists and clamping,

After folding and clamping, dyeing (synthetic indigo) and washing this is my "collection".

A few of my favorite pieces up close.

spider web?

Love this sunburst

The grandkids named this stars and moons,

and this one soccer balls.

A neighbor said this was his favorite one. My dye clean up rag!

I wanted to share the story behind this child's dress with you. I went to a lecture at the quilt show and the speaker told how during World War II they made silk maps for the pilots. The maps were of the territory the pilots were flying over in case they were shot down they would hopefully find their way out. They made the maps from silk because water would not hurt it, they wouldn't rustle and make noise and they could sew them secretly into their uniform. When the soldiers came home some were sewed into clothes and perhaps quilts?

Tuesday, August 9, 2016


Last Fall when the goldenrod was in full bloom, I dye printed two wool pieces. One with the individual heads lined up, and the other with the heads laid out in a circle.

I cut and basted them on indigo dyed wool. This will be the next block for my Sun & Moon quilt.

In between the goldenrod rays I cut out other goldenrod dyed fabric following the string imprints.
There is only one place I want to stitch on this block,

 in the wilderness!
We went on a family picnic Up North along a river. There's a wonderful picnic ground on a point of land. The river winds around the point. You put in your tubes, etc. on one side and 1/2 hour later your around the other side.

You come up that side, eat some lunch and do it all again.

I found a peaceful part of the river for some hiking and photo taking.

I'm using the feather stitch to sew around the Sun and it's rays.

  • Deb Hardman
  • Allie Aller
  • Jenny Bowker Cairo