The Mad Scientist, Episode 3

Organic plant dyes are not predictable.That’s what makes them interesting. In experiment 1 and 2, we got some blues /purples, a very pretty yellow and lots of brown – apparently nature’s favorite colour. This time I was looking for red and green.

imageI was hoping to get red from pincherries – a pretty, little red wild berry.
Pincherries make excellent jelly if you can find enough to give you at least 6 cups of juice. I only had 3 cups. Not enough for jelly, and barely enough for this experiment.

I divided the juice into 3 one cup portions. The first was left without additive. I added lemon to the second and iron mordant to the third. My expectation was that the one with lemon would be a lighter red (maybe even pink) and the one with iron would be darker. Here is the result. Pretty, but not much of a difference.pincherry

If you remember in my last mad scientist experiment, I used Hosta leaves in hopes of getting a green dye. That didn’t happen. What happened was that the Hosta leaves turned brown just like they naturally would at the end of a growing season. It made me wonder…

juniper plantWould a plant that does not die over winter, such as an evergreen produce a green dye? To test this theory, I used juniper needles. Another interesting smelling kitchen – just a little too early in the morning for the strong gin smell!

This time I divided the liquid into 2 batches; one with iron mordant and one without. The change was instant. But not very green. The juniper with iron is the closest – almost grey/green. Unfortunately, it was the batch that had the least fabric!juniper

imageStill searching for green, I found green tea leaves in a kitchen drawer.
Not being fond of green tea, it wasn’t much of a sacrifice to use for the tea

It looks like my search for green will continue. The reference material says Fennel, Olive leaves or Fig leaves make excellent dye sources for yellows and green -not like we have any of those available. It also says red cabbage is fun to experiment with so my next question is: if red cabbage is a good dye source (for blues and lavenders), will green cabbage produce a green dye? It just might be worth a try.

Have a great week. Look around and tell me what natural plants might produce a green dye.


Posted in mad scientist, Uncategorized | 8 Comments

Tina & I on retreat

This week I hung up the paint brushes, tile cutters and anything else construction related. It was bonding time with Tina (my sewing machine at the lake).

Before we get to quilting, here is the vanity I was working on. It was inspired by an antique store I visited in Singapore where they modernized antiques with chalk paint and glass. This piece was a sideboard made with reclaimed wood. It was the right size, and had a drawer that could be removed for a sink, but was the wrong colour. A perfect piece to personalize! Chalk paint is easy to work with – it goes on anything without stripping or sanding first. Instead of glass, I used epoxy as a sealer for the top. It gives it a high gloss thick finish. Not quilting but still fun.

Tina helped me put Humpty Dumpty back together again. Once the front was done we had lots of little pieces left over and since we don’t like to waste fabric, we left Humpty Dumpty in pieces on the back. This one is going to be quilted by someone with a long arm so you won’t see it again for a number of months. (Sorry for the quality of the photos. The black really did not want to transfer well)

You voted, and the winning layout is done. I will quilt this one but the ideas have to perculate for awhile. Right now I am seeing (moving upper left corner down) pink sunsets, blue water, green grass, brown earth. Hopefully the quilting inspiration doesn’t take to long…image

In the spring I pieced Grandson No 2 a quick and easy quilt for his visits to the lake. Last year he was still using baby blankets. This year he will be 2 and needs something a little bigger. Lake season is almost over, so it is definately time to finish! I sure am glad boys get cheerful colours these days. It is a panel with a piano key border using fabrics from my stash – a mixture of cotton and flannel. It was a good quilt on which to practice free-motion embroidery.image

Next on the agenda are August postcards. It’s not too late if you want to participate. Just let me know by the end of this week. The theme is “Go Vintage’ so think of your favorite vintage anything and put it on a card. I have already received one that made me chuckle. I loved it and am looking forward to showing it to you the first Wed in September.

Be creative, and have a great week. Thanks for stopping by.

Posted in 2016, Reclaimed and Repurposed, Scraps, Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Lil’ Twister

The bathroom reno is almost done. In the last 2 months I haven’t done very much quilting but during the renovation process we removed a closet in order to make the bathroom bigger. Guess what I found. A UFO. A bag of fabric that was there for almost 2 years – everything needed to make a Lil’ Twister quilt. The inspiration to make it came back. All I needed to do was cut some 5″ black squares to go along with the charm packs.

Then I laid it out and chain stitched the squares together.lil twister2

It’s quite pretty, don’t you think?lil twister3

But I am only half done. Now I have to cut it up …lil twister4

And put it back together again. lil twister1

This just might be called my Humpty Dumpty quilt. Well, that will be next week’s job, along with the back.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my post. Have a creative week.

Posted in 2016, Uncategorized, WIP | 16 Comments

Q & A – 1 Million Mile Challenge

What an awesome month July was for our 1 million mile Quilted Postcard Challenge .We partnered with Sheila’s Quilt World and combined our 1 Million Mile challenge with her postcard swap. So how far did we go? An amazing 133,500 miles! That brings our total to 512,200 miles in only 7 months. We are now over half way to our goal!!!

Look at the beauties I recently received…july received

One of these cards is from Brazil – a new ‘friend’ I wish I could meet in person, but now  have the pleasure of exchanging tidbits of information along with quilted postcards. Another is from someone I recently met in Singapore and has never quilted but made her first ever quilted postcard-and then sent it from a mystery location of Shanghai, China! Another participated in her first ever postcard swap, and then there are faithful friends who I enjoy connecting with every month.

There are new people interested in this challenge so I thought a review of the challenge would be in order and I could address questions that I have been asked in the last few months. Such as…

What is the 1 million mile challenge?

  • it is a challenge to see how long it will take for our postcards to go 1 million miles. Since quilting is a craft that is enjoyed around the world, my vision is to blanket the world with quilted postcards. We started January 1, 2016. Now we are over half way in just 7 months. When will it end?
  • since it is about tracking miles, it doesn’t matter who sends the cards or where they are sent. If you are sending cards, let me know how many you sent, and how many miles they covered. Locations are nice but not necessary.

Why are you doing this?

  • to encourage quilters to try  something new
  • to practice and encourage mini-art
  • to make people smile. Can’t you just see a mail delivery person looking at a card that is so different from the regular mail? Can’t you see the nursing home resident pinning the card to their wall or door?

Who should I send the cards to?

  • a friend. You don’t have to be a quilter to appreciate receiving a card. Isn’t it better than junk mail or a bill? Can’t you see your friend pinning the card to their cubicle wall and thinking of you whenever they look at it?
  • how about a grandchild. Wouldn’t they love a special card as a keepsake from Grandma (or Grandpa)?
  • how about sending them to yourself from a holiday destination? Make some cards ahead of time and send them from each of the locations you visit. You think you will remember a certain day forever but if you write a note on the back of the card indicating what you did that day, it will give you details you would otherwise forget. Besides, if you send a card, you won’t feel pressured to find that special souvenir.
  • another quilter. It’s so much fun to connect with someone from another part of the world
  • anyone you would send a thank you card to

Why make them?

  • because they are fun to make
  • you can practice a design on a small space. You don’t have to come up with a design that takes months to make and hundreds of dollars only to realize that it isn’t what you envision.
  • you can practice a new skill
  • you can use up tiny bits of fabric that you would otherwise throw away
  • there is some (almost) instant gratification
  • it’s personal. No one else will come up with cards like yours

What should I do with the ones I receive?

  • some people collect cards with stamps from different parts of the world
  • you can display them with plate stands, and easily change your ‘art collection’whenever you wish
  • if you enjoy scrapbooking, you can include them in your holiday photo’s
  • if you have made a quilt for a grandchild (or someone else that is special ( i.e. a wedding or graduation quilt), why not send them a postcard so that they can frame it as a picture for their wall that will match their quilt

How is this different from other postcard swaps?

  • most swaps have someone collecting addresses and assigning partners.
  • in this challenge I will send you a card even if you don’t make one in return. You are helping me practice a skill and collect miles
  • I will exchange cards with you. It is now fun to collect the mail everyday to see if there are any cards in the mail. Even dear hubby gets excited when your card arrives.
  • I announce a different theme every month which you can choose to follow or not. The theme is there to help stretch our creativity. The theme for August is ‘Go Vintage’.

How should I mail my card(s)?

  • like regular postcards. 99% of the time they will get where they are going. I have mailed hundreds and only know of one that did not reach it’s destination
  • they can be mailed anywhere in the world

What supplies do I need and what if I can’t get them?

  • if you can’t get supplies I can mail you some.  I don’t intend to make this a business but want you to be able to enjoy making postcards too. I will send you a starter kit that includes printed instructions plus 5 pre-cut double adhesive flexi-firm pieces and 5 pre-stamped backs for $10 (Cdn) plus postage. Just send me a comment and we can make arrangements.

It is summer and hard to get back to sewing but I hope you will give this a try and join in the fun. Have a great week.




Posted in 2016, quilted postcards, Uncategorized | Tagged | 1 Comment

‘Go Modern’ Reveal

The theme for July’s 1 Million Mile Postcard Challenge was ‘Go Modern.’ I love the look of modern quilts, but when it came down to making a modern postcard, I struggled. Modern quilting is about the use of bold colours – mostly solids. It is about contrasting colours. It is about linear lines. It is minimalistic. It is about expansive negative space. How do you get all of that on a 4×6 inch card?modern mccalls

I worked out at least 4 different designs but they all seemed too simple. Boring. Then I saw Criss Crossing by Jen Shaffler in McCall’s Quick Quilts (August/September 2016) issue and decided the center block would be perfect. But it still took 10 cards before I was satisfied with the modern look!

I started with batiks, just because I love working with them. But it looked like the side strips were added simply because the block wasn’t big enough to cover the whole card. They didn’t look like they were part of the design.modern1

Then I went to 2 colour blocks (including the colours Jen used) with white corners. That was better. Not much ‘negative space’ but the side panels looked like they belonged. And I probably would never have used turquoise and orange together otherwise.modern2

Next I went to 1 colour +grey blocks. At the beginning I used greys with the same colour value as the colour they were paired with. I really liked those. They were simple but bold.modern3

As a side note, in January I wrote about the scrap saving method and I have been cutting and saving these scraps ever since. This is the first time I have used any of these precious scraps. Scraps as small as 1 1/2″ squares, 2 1/2″ squares and strips of various lengths. I did not do any cutting for these postcards, other than trimming after the fact. Wow, did it speed things up!

When I ran out of small dark grey squares, I reversed things and selected 2 1/2″ grey squares for the center X and small 1 1/2″ coloured squares for the arrows. I even tried a patterned fabric. The pattern was modern, but in the end it wasn’t very bold. The next one was! The colour was so bold, the grey faded into the background. The arrows, rather than the X became dominant.

That’s when I had an ah-ha moment. The lighter grey became negative space. And I didn’t need to use 10 squares of 1 colour, I could mix it up. Now I had small pops of brightly contrasting solid colours with lots of negative space. A little really does go a long way. But why does it take some of us so long to learn? Sigh. modern4

Since we went modern in July, lets ‘Go Vintage’ in August. It could be a vintage block, it could be vintage fabric, lace, clothing, tablecloths or anything that reminds you of the past. Maybe a trip to a second hand store might inspire you.

Thanks for stopping by and reading about my experience with modern postcards. It’s all a learning process. Next week I will give you the miles and locations for July. It is shaping up to be a banner month. Until then, have a great week.

Posted in 2016, quilted postcards, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Mad Scientist Fun & Slow Textiles

My Mad Scientist experiments are mostly about having fun. Questions like “I wonder what will happen if …” and “what if I do this?” or “what will happen if I add that…”. It combines two things I love to work and play with – textiles and plants. It forces me to slow down, to looks at different parts of the process, not just the whole. I get to interact with my products, to engage all my senses, and experience the mystery of the unexpected.

In essence, that is what Slow Textiles is about. Slow textiles does not refer to the length of time it takes to make something but is a sub-culture related to general environmental stewardship. It is about slowing down to enjoy and connect with different steps in the process. It is part of a movement that includes Slow Food, Slow Art, Slow Travel and Slow Parenting, Slow cities, etc. Go ahead and google it if you are interested.

For my first Mad Scientist experiment (post of June 22nd) I used coffee grinds, Peony flowers and Haskap fruit. Something from the wild, something from the kitchen, and something from the garden. This week I used  Saskatoon berries (wild), Hosta leaves (garden) and curry powder (kitchen). Needless to say, it was a very interesting smelling kitchen!

hostaStarting with the Hosta leaves, I choose them because I wanted to dye some fabric green, and because I have a lot of Hosta plants. Would you not expect even the slightest hint of green as a result? hosta2Not a chance! After soaking overnight, the cotton fabric, thread and wool were almost the same colour they started out as. Yes, this process does have some disappointments. But in the process we have still learned something – don’t bother using hosta as a natural plant dye! I will have to continue searching for a natural product that dyes green.

As for the curry, I think I subconsciously picked something from the guidebook in order to guarantee success for at least 1 batch. Last time it was coffee. This time it was turmeric. But when I searched the spice drawer I could not find turmeric by itself so I used a product that contained turmeric – curry. And I love the result.madscurry

The Saskatoon berries provided the most interesting results. Saskatoons are unique to the Canadian Prairies and normally I would not use them in an experiment. They are delicious to eat and very nutritious. But the ones available to us are diseased. It was an effort to pick even 2 cups, which I mixed with 6 cups of water. After simmering and straining I ended up with 3 cups, which I divided into 2 equal parts. Into one part, I added an iron mordant solution; the other remained as it was. In this picture you can see the results of the original cotton fabric, cotton thread and wool as compared with the same items after dying. The items on the left were dyed in the original solution, the items on the right were dyed with iron mordant. How interesting is that! madsaskatoons

Note: To make Iron Mordant (a natural colour modifier) you take a glass jar (with lid) and place rusty nails or other rusty iron objects into it. Then fill with enough water and vinegar (2:1 ratio) to cover the nails. Let sit at least 2 weeks, although it will last indefinitely. (from the Handbook of Natural Plant Dyes by Sasha Duerr)

To be clear, when using hand dyed fabrics in quilts, I will continue to use the fabrics dyed by people like Vicki Welsh and Ricky Tims. This process is not about replacing my quilting fabrics. It is about having fun, connecting with the environment and gaining a better understanding of the fabrics that I purchase.

blueberry pie freshI really did consider experimenting with blueberries, but couldn’t bring myself to using the precious berries. Instead, we made the Fresh Blueberry Pie recipe I promised you last week. This is easy and absolutely deciduous. I wish I knew where it came from so that I could give them credit. I love the fact that it only has 1 crust, and that the berries are fresh. It seems so healthy – for a pie!

Have a great week. Be creative. Why not look around and see what you can experiment with? It just might open a whole new world for you.

Thanks for reading my post.

Posted in mad scientist, recipes, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

Your Turn to Vote

July’s theme for the 1 Million Mile Postcard Challenge is ‘Go Modern.’ I am already on my 4th rendition of a design. Why is this one so difficult? Because I want it simple but still interesting. Do you want to participate? Send me a comment from the Contact tab. Any comments there will not be published. I would love to see what you come up with. You have until the end of this week to let me know if you want a postcard from me.

Summer means two things in our neck of the woods – construction and gardening. Construction doesn’t just happen on our streets and highways, it is a perpetual thing in our household. What that means is during this last week I was tiling and painting, not quilting.

Having said that, my fingers may not have been quilting but my head was. In June I cut out a log cabin quilt and I used left over pieces to practice some curved quilting. These will end up either as a wall quilt or will be used on the back of the quilt. I took a few minutes to lay out some potential designs but I need your opinion. Which layout do you like the best?

And what are your thoughts on using it as a wall quilt or would it be better used on the back of the log cabin quilt? I tend to like quilts that are interesting on both sides but seldom take the time to do that.

In terms of gardening, the weeds are winning. And it seems like such a futile exercise. We picked blueberries instead. With all the rain we have had, this has to be one of the best crops ever.

We had blueberry pancakes, made a blueberry pie and 20 cups have made it to the freezer. We will enjoy those next winter. Ken’s Kitchen has been quiet for awhile so here is the first recipe of the summer: a traditional Blueberry Pie. Next week I will post a recipe for a fresh blueberry pie that is just awesome. Watch for it.

Blueberry pie

Traditional Blueberry Pie

Have a great week. Find something creative to do or look at. Thank you for reading my post and a special thank you to anyone who takes the time to leave a comment or vote on one of the layouts.

Posted in recipes, Scraps, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

Hit the Road, Jack

june revealWe enjoy our annual summer drive through the Canadian prairies (20 hours, return trip). There are no mountains, and not even many hills. There are no oceans. It can be hundreds of miles between cities. In fact, there are many times when we have the road to ourselves with not another vehicle or soul in sight for as much as an hour. The worst part is the poor or non-existent cell and internet service – which is why the reveal of my June design for the 1 million mile quilted postcard challenge, and the announcement of July’s theme is a week late.

But the prairies have a beauty of their own. My June cards with the theme ‘Hit the Road, Jack’ attempt to capture the mood of a prairie landscape. For the most part, everything is flat. Fields of wheat, barley, oats, rye, corn and lentils in all shades of green flow into seas of yellow canola fields. The occasional field of blue flax could be a mirage in the desert. We were just a little early, but next week these fields will look like giant bodies of water. I particularly like it when yellow canola and blue flax fields are planted next to each other, but I don’t think the farmers do their planning on that basis. Speaking of water, the ‘dug-out’ is a common landscape feature. Most come into existence when a road is built. Later they fill with water which can be used for animals, plants or even people. Manitoba used to be know as the land of 100,000 lakes so there is no shortage of water.

The sky is where all the drama happens. From a vast canvas of unending blue, to scary storms, to beautiful shades of pink and red, it is ever changing. Saskatchewan really does have the perfect motto- “Land of the living skies”. I attempted to capture some of the drama in the sky on my cards. It was the first time I tried to dye and use cheesecloth (wind). I found it was not an easy thing to do. The nice thing about making a number of cards is that I get to make each one unique. Some of you will get a sunset, some a blue sky. Some will have green fields, purple fields or brown fields. Each card is different.

June was also a Mystery location month. My cards were mailed from the small village of LOVE, Saskatchewan – population about 100. On Valentines Day it was listed on Google as one of the most romantic places in Canada. Brides from around the world send their invitations to the post office in Love so that they will have the special postmark.

Collectively our postcards traveled 7200 miles in June. That is our lowest month so far, but at a year-to-date total of 378,700 we have gone to the moon and are half way back to earth. How awesome is that!june cards received

Here are a couple cards I received. Don’t you love the interpretation of the theme? Each one is so unique. Virginia says that she wishes she was on the road to Paris. She even marked the metro stops with roller blades for her favorite sights. Marnie recently sold their trailer so her card was done in remembrance of all the fun trips they made to their summer home. It is so much fun to see what others come up with.

Let’s ‘Go Modern’ in July. And let’s hope that the postal workers stay on their jobs so that our postcards get delivered! Let me know by the 15th if you want a card from me. If the postal strike happens and continues to the end of the month I will make the trip to North Dakota and mail your cards from there. Either way, sooner or later you will get them.

One other thing – if you make one card, why not make 2? Sheila’s Quilt World is having a postcard swap. Check it out and see if you are interested.

Thanks for reading my post. Have a great week. Be creative and find a few minutes to play.

Posted in 2016, quilted postcards, travels, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Grad 2016

Many grads receive the gift of a quilt once they make it through some academic milestone. I did. Anyone who graduates from school in Small Town, Some Place has to leave home if they want to go on to further their education, or even to work. A quilt just seems like a good practical gift for all. This year I saw a number of grad quilts made by the members in my local quilt group. They were beautiful. And all for girls. For some reason, I usually have boys to sew for. This year was no different.

First, my parameters. This quilt had to be durable. No meticulous piecing. No fussy finishes. Just something that looked good and would stand up to the rough stuff. I had a Toronto Blue Jays t-shirt to incorporate somewhere on the quilt, and a fleece throw that I wanted to use for the back. Yes, it is hot in the summer but fall is around the corner and all the young people in my life just love warm cuddly minky-type fabrics. A fleece throw is not only a cheaper alternative, but there is more choice when it comes to colours and patterns. This one had a pattern pressed into the fibers that I wanted to use as a stitching line.

Next question – what quilting pattern should I use? It’s amazing. You can look through the same magazine a number of times, but when you have different perimeters, you see patterns you would never have noticed otherwise. grad2This time I selected a pattern called Sugar Roses by Susan Guzman (McCalls Fun & Fresh Summer Projects, July/August 2012) as a launching pad. It was a 4 part series and I only had part 1, but that didn’t matter. Everything was modified.

It was the center of the quilt that I knew would work for the Blue Jay’s logo.The list of names from the back of the t-shirt could go on one of the borders and I wanted a little red somewhere else on the quilt. A trip to several fabric stores helped fill in the rest. Other than that, it was make-up-as-you-go.

grad3The fleece throw and the decision to use the pattern on the throw as quilting lines, affected everything that followed. The top had to start bigger than the throw so that it could be sandwiched in reverse (top side down and backing on top) and later trimmed to the same size as the throw. I had already decided to eliminate the side borders in order to get a younger contemporary look. And of course, the size of all the blocks and borders were revised to match the size of the throw.grad4

I decided on 12″ squares but because of the placement of the logo on the t-shirt, I had to either add a little extra fabric around the logo or be content with a logo that wasn’t centered on the square. I choose the option #1. First, I stabilized a generous portions of the t-shirt front and back with Pellon Shape-Flex, an all purpose woven fusible interfacing. Then I cut a 10″ block with a centered logo and added 2″ to all 4 sides before trimming it down to 12″. The back of the t-shirt had a list of names and since these were going on to the border, the width was determined by the length of the longest name. I ended up with borders that finished at 1 1/2″ (red), 3″ (blue) and 4 1/2″ (checkered).

The last decision I made, which I considered a little risky at the time was to use a twin needle for the quilting. grad6Since I was quilting it with the back of the quilt on top, the stitching lines of both needles would be on the fleece side and the zigzag of the bobbin thread would be visible on the top side of the quilt. I think it worked because there wasn’t a lot of other stitching or piecing in the quilt, and because the stitching is an overall pattern.grad5

Congratulations to everyone who is graduating this year. I hope someone made a special quilt for you!

Note: We will get back to our quilted postcard challenge next week. Thanks for stopping by and reading this post.

Posted in 2016, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Mad Scientist -Food, Flowers & Fabric

Spring does strange things to us. All those farm roots suddenly come to life. Dear hubby takes to the garden to plant potatoes, cucumbers, tomatoes. I stick herbs and a few flowers in the ground. White flowers for my “moon garden”. Bee Balm for bees and hummingbirds.  Milk weed for the butterflies. And whatever else might catch my fancy. Then I look for something to harvest.

First out of the gate is Haskap. These shrubs produce fruit even before strawberries are ready. We came across these when they were in the experimental stage at the University of Saskatchewan. I love that they flower and provide food for the bees before everything else. I love their rich purple colour. And the health benefits are suppose to be phenomenal. They are also known as honeyberries, and I have tasted some good ones. But, not ours. So, what will I do with these berries I picked last week? Let’s play!

My source of inspiration for this little experiment was The Handbook of Natural Plant Dyes by Sasha Duerr. mads4Just reading her list for harvesting organic hues is exciting. Turmeric, onionskin, fennel, Japanese Maple, coffee, blackberries, acorns, pomegranate, and so on. Can’t you just imagine it? Aren’t the possibilities endless?

My first task was to search for some natural fibers and this is what I found around the house: white cotton, silk doupioni, wool batting, and cheesecloth.mads1

Next decision – what other plant materials should I use? I had just finished my morning coffee, so using coffee grounds was an easy solution. Then I went into the backyard with the intention of finding something green, but saw the peonies and wondered if they would work. Such a nice delicate pink. There was no harm in trying.mads3

I prepared the fabric by soaking it. At the same time, I started cooking the organic materials. Most of the risk was with the peonies. At the last minute I added a lemon thinking it may draw the colour out. The petals turned white immediately with very little change in water colour so I added more and more petals. mads2The suggestion to weigh and measure everything went out the window. Eventually I had pretty pink water – and a nice smelling kitchen.

After straining the water and adding the fabric, I continued to play with the peonies. What would happen if I added more petals on top of the fabric? Would I get a soft pink with darker pink areas, similar to petals?
This time however, instead of turning white, the petals turned brown. Not surprising, since that is what they do in nature. I guess the role the lemon played was different than I anticipated, and there wasn’t enough contact between the two elements this time around.

Here are the results…mads5

  • I had such high hopes for the peony fabrics. They were a pretty
    pink coming out of the rinse water, but dried a light pink/brown. Not what I wanted.Maybe next time I will have to use more lemons.
  • The fabric with dyed coffee was also lighter than I expected
  • What happened with the haskap? It was a solid red (except the tie dyed piece) after rinsing but ended up with blue spots. It’s true that I briefly rolled it in an old blue towel (and I mean really old). The colour could not have transferred from the towel to the fabric, could it? Is there any other explanation? It was a pleasant surprise. I would love to try this one again but it will have to wait until next year. The berries are all gone.
  • Cotton is surprisingly hard to dye. The colours were not as intense as I expected in either the fabric or the cheesecloth.
  • LOVED working with wool and silk.  The wool did not felt even though it simmered in water for a considerable length of time. Both took up the colour almost immediately.

So what will I do with these pieces? I have no idea. They would not be colourfast in a quilt. But I may use them in postcards. I might even challenge myself to make an art quilt using only organically dyed fabrics, and where I must use at least one piece of each. Is anyone else with me?

Posted in mad scientist, Uncategorized | 6 Comments