Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Day

I'm a little addicted to these!

I am especially pleased with the yardage I dyed yesterday. The blue is raw silk, the rest are linen/rayon. I always pre-wash my fabrics...even PFD, just to be sure. This linen/rayon generates a LOT of lint in the dryer, so I wash it 2 or 3 times . But yesterday I decided to just dye it without pre-wash (red piece), and it took the dye great and didn't make as much lint in the dryer. I will do it this way from now on.
Someone asked why I like this fabric so drapes beautifully, and doesn't wrinkle up like most linens and linen blends. For those of us with curves in not-so-desirable places, it can be frustrating to find tops that will skim over the body and not get caught up on the curves...and this fabric wrinkling at the butt that you can't smooth know what I mean if you wear any linen! I tend to get warm very easily, but I don't in the tops I've made from this fabric. And it sews, washes and dries beautifully. It is from Dharma.

Sunday, May 27, 2007


The lawn is perfect...the plantings are in bloom...the pool is's Spring! I love the way the house and grounds look at this time of year...and we had such a crummy winter that it seems twice as good. Now we just need some more hot days and the pool will be warm enough to swim.
All the fabric is in the washer or dryer, so you'll see it was a perfect day for dyeing, and I'm pleased with the expected results.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Memorial Day Weekend

A holiday weekend (especially with great weather) in my Village means more cars and people than I care to deal I get my errands done early and get home....and stay there, if at all possible. This picture was taken while I was at the Drive-Up window of the Bank (I used to work here, before the Tax Receiver's Office called me) and I looked out at this beautiful view every day. That is Port Jefferson Harbor, which leads to Long Island Sound.

And every hour, at this time of year, the Ferry from Bridgeport comes in with loads of people and cars. They aren't ALL coming to Port Jeff, but they all must pass through...traffic can be horrendous. And, of course, all the cars and people traveling TO Bridgeport every hour must come through the Village too. I love the Ferry...I take it all the time to avoid traveling through NYC to get upstate or to New England. So we must grin and bear it here.

I'm going to spend my day cleaning windows, vacuuming the pool, and making a new batch of dyes to use tomorrow and Monday....stay tuned.


Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Pattern Alert

I love this jacket is the Haiku Two from The Sewing Workshop. I made one in Size L a month ago and it went together like a dream. Then I cut out two at the same time in Size XS from my hand-dyed fabric. During construction I realized the pieces just wouldn't fit together. I tried everything...then I measured the actual pattern pieces and they were about an inch, at the seam I was trying to sew. I emailed Linda Lee at Sewing Workshop, and she (after a day) realized the size markings were backwards on one piece. See correction here...

She apologized profusely and offered to see what they could do if I wanted to send them the I sent them. We'll see...I hope she works it out...she is a pattern genius (IMHO).

These two pictures show the new new one (linen/cotton) I am working on size L (since I know that size works). It would be the XS, S, XL and XXL that would be most affected. I've told many people how much I love this pattern, so I wanted to send out this alert.
By the way...their website is a fun look...and she put one of my bags in her L2 Bag Gallery.


Sunday, May 20, 2007

Miyake Pattern

For those of you that were in Melody's class in the Hudson Valley, this is the pattern (Issey Miyake for Vogue)she used for her marbled fabric shirt that we all loved. I made this one from the linen/rayon. I love the pattern but I need to tweak it a little to suit me....and I need to find some great this will sit until I get into the City in June.
As you can see it has a very asymmetrical bottom...and the sleeves are great. I always shied away from Miyake patterns but upon closer scrutiny he has some not-so-out-there designs, a number of which I'm going to try, if I can get my hands on some of the older, out-of -print Vogue patterns.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Brown Bag

This is my brown bag...made from the sewing workshop pattern....the fabric is hand-dyed cotton canvas, discharged with the clorox bleach pen. The lining is Kaffe Fassett. LOVE this bag!


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Ugly Fabric

This comes under the heading of "what was I thinking????" This is linen/rayon that was just a disaster. My intentions were good (questionable), but I did everything wrong. So, I figured I could save it by over-dyeing.....but....

not so good. So this weekend I will perform yet another process (to be determined). Sometimes these problems drive the need to be creative in totally different I welcome the challenge every now and then.
To be continued.............

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Potpourri II

I forgot to include this bag in my felted bags the other day....and it is my favorite. It is tote bag size and I made the handles extra thick to be very strong.
This linen/rayon from Dharma that I dyed on Sunday will be my next two shirts...the red/amethyst/multi-other-colors is so beautiful in person. This is a new batch of the fabric that I just ordered, and it is great. I always pre-wash my fabrics, even if they are PFD. This fabric creates a bunch of lint in the dryer, so I like to get that out in a couple washings and dryings before I dye for me.
And this will be my next L2 bag (Sewing Workshop) is dyed cotton canvas that I discharged with the Clorox bleach pen. I will start that tonight during Idol and Dancing. I got some webbing for the handles, so I'm anxious to try it.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Too Cute!

I bought these little girl dress blanks from Dharma about 4 years ago...put them in a box and forgot about them. I was cleaning on Friday evening in anticipation of dyeing on Saturday and Sunday and found numerous things, including these. They dyed beautifully....are cute just as they are, or could be embellished in myriad ways. I'll find some little girls this summer to put them to good use. I always wondered how the blanks would be, what the quality was and how they would dye....and I was very pleasantly surprised.
Then, of course, I had to dye some more fabric....since these had been popular I made more, along with 4 pieces of linen/rayon for shirts and a couple pieces of canvas for jackets. Back to work tomorrow.

Friday, May 11, 2007


FRIDAY!!! One week of work down and about 5 to go...yea!!! This quilt of squares is a request from a family member. I made him one years ago and he tells me it is in shreds....I love that he used it to death and gladly made him a new's going out to be quilted and he will have it soon. The fabrics are mostly mine, with some by Judy Robertson...a great fabric dyer that I met at Quilting-By-The-Lake in Upstate NY a number of years ago.

This is a baby-size quilt I made from my fabric to show customers just one way to use the long narrow pieces I dye. I love color! And I think vibrant color in a baby's quilt is stimulating to their minds and creative spirit.
Tomorrow should be a beautiful day here, so I'm going to be dyeing....

Thursday, May 10, 2007


I was asked to show my felted bags, so here they are. These are knitted on large needles with wool yarns and then washed in HOT water in the machine until they "felt", or shrink down so you can't see stitches anymore...just smooth like felt. They were great fun to make, but knitting is not really for me time is better spent dyeing and sewing.
We have a small group that gets together when possible to work on projects. A few times we made gorgeous masks for my daughter's wedding and masquerade ball last Halloween at Disney World. I'll have to see if I have some pictures of those and post them. Anyway...we met one day to make handbags of leather. This was mine, based on a bag I bought in Santa Fe. I need lots of practice with sewing on leather...there's a lot I don't know about the methods.

This summer I hope to finish a bunch of UFO's (unfinished projects). This quilt top is pieced of a single length of Melody Johnson's beautiful dyed fabric that I sliced up, pieced together, sliced up again and pieced again. I just have to decide how to quilt it.

And this little piece I hope to hand quilt (I NEVER say that anymore!) The little squares are Derba Lunn's airbrushed fabrics that I bought in Houston one year. I love the squares and the memories they invoke. I love fabulous fabrics, and Melody and Debra are two of my favorites...along with Jane Dunnewold , Elin Noble and Mickey Lawler Enjoy!

Monday, May 7, 2007

Somers Show II

My new favorite vendor at a you should visit if you see them at another venue, or are in Woodstock, NY....yes....Summer of '69 Woodstock (I was there, are you shocked?) The two owners are great guys and had fabu fabric.

This is Nancy's discharged black fabric that is always a big hit. And below are some of my dyed pieces on display. Most of these were sold.

The fat 1/4's above were discharged with either bleach pen or discharge paste through a screen. Below are the jackets.

I was so happy to see a couple quilts by new friend Diane Evans, and I knew she wasn't coming to the Show, so I took some pictures...they both had ribbons! Congratulations Diane! When I got back to the booth I read the catalog and realized there was another of her quilts, but I couldn't get back to get a picture. It was a beautiful quilt show. Sorry one picture is sideways...I forgot to tweak it in get the idea.

I've gotten numerous requests for dyeing, jackets, classes etc...I will decide all of these things in June when I finish work (real job)for the season.

Somers Show

This was our booth at the show....we were in a hallway (show is in a High School), and have been in the same spot since we started vending there.

Here is Nancy's table of hand-dyed yardage....lots of graphics...they are a favorite with the quilters. Graphics are black & white prints (checkerboard, stripes etc.) that we dye with multiple colors.
This rack holds our dyed silk yardage...also canvas and linen.

We had a number of ladies come to the show in their jackets, so I took pictures of a few.

See the embroidery done on this one...on the lilypad....

is a little frog! So it.

This jacket photographed light...but is one of the blackest jackets we've done....and she loves it!

We had a good show....worth all the work. And I will have more pictures tomorrow...including a couple quilts by a new friend I spent a week in class with in Greenville in March. I started back to work today so I'm beat...have to feed hubby.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Bias Binding

A couple years ago we decided to send some of our dyed fabric away to have bias binding made from it, and we were so pleased with the results. We have narrow for topical applications and wide for binding quilts...and some in-between for whatever the imagination will allow. There's cotton and silk.

Well...I'm packed and about to leave for the weekend....have a great one.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Three Bags and Some Packs

Today was full of final preparations for the Show. I had to package things, make labels and price small task. These packs consist of 24 different pieces (5"x 6 1/2") of dyed and discharged cotton. The little rolls are the scraps left after cutting, and will be given to anyone who wears their jacket to the Show, or brings us pictures of something they made with our fabric. I make these scrap rolls everytime I cut up packs.
Another favorite obsession of mine is to make bags. I felt them, quilt them, make all different patterns. I put the finishing touches on three of them today, and they will also be going to the Show. This is a good sized bag, with many pockets around the outside.

This is some great decorator fabric....makes a fun bag.

And this is a tote that has nice long has batting and is quilted.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Two Jackets and a Stack of Fats

Yesterday turned out to be a perfect dyeing day, so I quick made a batch of dyes and did a stack of 70 fat quarters and about 45 scarves....more ironing!

This is our most popular jacket that we make. It's cotton canvas that gets softer with each washing. The style is a simple one that seems to fit most every body type. We get a kick out of how many ladies will wear them to the Somers Show each year to show us how they look, or how they embellished theirs. One woman took an embroidery machine to hers and made beautiful flowers on the "yoke" areas.

I made this one slightly longer for someone who might like more of a coat look. This fabric was dyed over the rack so you get a nice flow and blend of all the colors.