Blue jean jacket

If one is fun, then four is more!!  img_3709Dyed fabric, commercial fabric, upcycled denim blue jeans.  And blue jean zippers make four!

My goal with blue jeans is to use everything but the squeak…fabric yes.  Pockets yes.  Zippers yes.  The thickness of the seams and detail at the waist of the jeans is difficult to use…but I have a friend who boldly incorporates those into lovely purses…makes me a piker!



fullsizerender-1And, from the back.  You can really see the different colors/wears of the blue jeans.

Using McCall pattern M7201.



Mickey Mouse Shirt


Mickey Mouse back

Mickey Mouse back

Just finished my Mickey Mouse shirt.  Depending how it’s said…that’s good, or bad!  

This uses a series of shirts with various graphics and dyed blue/green.  And, there are some shibori dyed pieces.

Someone enjoyed their trip to Disneyland…I enjoy their shirt!  And one of my favorites is the sheep that gets the middle spot.




Mickey Mouse front

Mickey Mouse front

Do what works…good words to live by. Think the toon green creature is freaked out by his neighbors or just freaky 🙂









I Love the Fitton

They offered me a t-shirt for the Fitton’s upcoming Season Launch (August 19 5-9pm everyone is invited) but I opted to make a summery shirt but with lots of the Fitton 🙂

Front of the I Love the Fitton Shirt

Front of the I Love the Fitton Shirt

Starting with fabric dyed in Fitton red–some shibori and some pre-printed designs,  I added images from Fitton activities.

The Fitton Center for the Creative Arts is a community arts center in downtown Hamilton, Ohio.  See the new murals in downtown Hamilton–that’s Street Spark at work.  It’s partnership of the Fitton with the City of Hamilton.

The Big Blue Baby is quite the talk of Hamilton.

Back of the I Love the Fitton Shirt

Back of the I Love the Fitton Shirt

I Love/heart the Fitton has Stephen Smith’s sketch of the Fitton.  And, of course I added pictures of the building, the bathroom (yup– the Fitton has the best bathrooms ever) and a wonderful photo of a youngster enjoying a class at the Fitton.  Fitton/Fitton/Fitton uses my rubber stamp of the name.


My Fitton shirt…so far.  With lots of room for more!

Purple plus vest and blouse


Purple plus...vest and blouse

Purple plus…vest and blouse

Purple plus is a combination of vest and blouse.  It’s for a class that’s an introduction to scrapping for commercial garments.  The class will be on making the vest–using multiple fabrics to make new cloth.  Then making a garment from that cloth.

The vest is like a scarf, adding some color and pattern.


Purple blouse


The blouse is scrappier and combines more pieces.  The fabrics are mostly batiks.

I know they’re batik because I could smell the wax as I worked with them!
Purple plus vest and blouseI worked on this using my newest toy…I should give the dress form a name.  Mable??  She comes with lots of dials.  We have innie and outie belly buttons, Mable has a dialie.

I bought this from a Craigslist ad–I was a bit concerned about CL serial murders.  We’ve all heard about them.  So I called a friend as I arrived at the seller’s house and asked that she call out the troops if she hadn’t heard from me shortly.  I went to the door and the seller met me and then took me to her car where the dress form had been placed.  SHE was worried about CL serial murderers and had opted to meet me outside.  We both had a good laugh at our respective and effective strategies.

The blouse is made using Butterick 5948.  The vest is made using a home made pattern but any simple pattern would work well, like McCall’s M7290.  Come take the class at Seams Sew Easy!



Under the Sea


Under the Sea

Under the Sea

Under the Sea has the blues and greens reminding me of tropical water.

I found a series of blues and greens– all hand-dyed pieces.  Some are patterned with shibori techniques and some are done with white on white printed fabric.  The dots are done with small clamps.  The white print/paint acts as a resist–that’s the circles.

Under the Sea

Under the Sea

I like to have pockets…the side seams were sewn up when I remembered.  So, I made up a couple pockets using some triangular scraps.

The back has lighter green pieces and more vertical stripes.




Finding Dory

Finding Dory

Using the same pattern (Butterick 6171,) I incorporated fishy fabrics in Finding Dory.

I made up this shirt for a Fitton Center event which used Finding Dory as the theme.




Finding Dory

Finding Dory

There’s a mixture of commercial fabrics and dyed pieces…the fish fabrics were leftovers from a project that I did for my great nieces who live in Florida.  The sleeve is indigo dyed with a shibori fold.

I couldn’t decide whether I liked one side or the other best, so I put pockets on both sides!




Beet it!

Yesterday, I cooked up a pot of beet waterbeets and that red/purple water was so inviting.  Not for a swim-dip, but for a dye-dip!  I put in a piece of treated cotton (treated with aluminum acetate.)  And, yum…the fabric turned a lovely pink shade.

Great!!  I’m loving this!

For the final step, I rinsed the excess.  And.  Aaaargh…the pink went down the drain.  Leaving my fabric barely colored.  This is what they mean by fugitive color–it runs away!!

Ah well, I dipped it again, dried it, without a rinse.  I’ve been working with beeswax/encaustic to preserve fabric collages.  This will be a great candidate.  Anyway, the beets were great eating!!

My friend Deb suggested using eggplant–the nice purple one.  I’ll be trying that for dyeing soon!


Bidens or Coreopsis

With the winter that we’ve had,Bidens Sun Drop I’m eager to get out in the garden and add some color.  I stopped at a local nursery and found this delightful plant, Bidens–Sun Drop.  It’s new to me…looks like a Potentilla or daisy or aster.  What attracted me was the sunny yellow color.

It’s described as an annual that likes full sun.  And, it found a nice home in the front of the house.

But, surely, it’s more than a pretty face, so I put it to work!!   I grabbed a few flowers.  My expectation was low, maybe some backyard yellow.  And, to my surprise…

Sun Drop

My favorite coreopsis orange.  WAHOO!!  So, I went to the source of all information (not t.h.e. oracle, but t.h.e. google) and there’s some indication that this plant is related to the coreopsis.  It has a leaf that’s close to Moonbeam c., but a flower that’s like Tickseed c.

Whichever…it’s a new favorite of mine!!


Willow twigs in the Spring

Is there a dyeing seasonal schedule?  That was a question posed in a natural dyeing blog that I receive.  Well, of course, if you dye from leaves and flowers…follow their schedule.  But, what about now when it’s early spring and not much has unfurled yet.  How about sap rising as part of that season?

So, here’s my experiment with early willow which is growing in a “ditchy area” in my neighborhood.

Willow twigs

Willow twigs

I gathered some willow sticks.  The buds are just starting to get fat, so, logically, the sap should be rising.  No leaves yet.  I cut the sticks into six inch lengths and put them in a dye pot; covered them with water.  I brought them to a simmer and turned off the heat so the pot stays hot for a bit.  Not much color.

So, the next morning, I repeated the process.  Not much color.  So much for rising sap.

But, I had put some effort into this pot of willow twigs so, I repeated the process over the next days.  Sometimes heating them a couple times a day.  Sometimes, letting the pot go to a boil.  After a few days, the water was darker and my sample fabric was showing a bit of color.  So, I kept repeating the process.

Here’s the result after a week of periodic heating.  I shibori-dyed a piece of cotton that had been prepared with aluminum acetate.  It’s a pleasant tan color, with the hint of pink that is mentioned with willow.

Happy in the sun

Happy in the sun into the sun.  OOOPS!!

Happy, the wonder dog….has to get in the middle of any picture.  She’s not trying to be sultry…she’s looking into the sun.  OOOPS!!


Pomegranate dyeing

This kitchen dyeing was a success!!  I used the leftover pomegranate rinds.  Yup, the seeds were great!!  I remember as a child my dad ate this bloody looking fruit and I wouldn’t eat it because it was icky looking.  Silly girl.  When I discovered how good they tasted, my dad laughed and laughed.

Pomegranate and indigo

Pomegranate and indigo

I arashi folded (pole wrapped) and dipped in the pomegranate bath.  And, then re-wrapped in the opposite direction and dipped in my re-activated indigo bath.  (Which had been partially activated using the leftover pomegranate water.)

My weaving guild is holding a challenge to use paper in a fiber process.  I up-cycled/repurposed a paper catalog–dyeing it with arashi folds, too.  This is going to be the background.

Nice day here that promises spring and Happy jumped in the picture!

Happy has to get in the picturep.s. thank heavens for spell-checkers.  Too many vowels in pomegranate!



Artichoke and golden beets or white as rice!

So, the ultimate in kitchen dyeing should be frugality…eat,artichoke and beets then save the extra and dye with it.  Sounds good in theory!

First step…boil up a pot of artichokes.  And, save the water for a dye pot.  I folded a piece of cotton.  Dipped and dried it.  Unfold it and see a bit of green.  Ah well.

Next step…prepare some golden beets.  I refolded the piece of cotton.  Now, I use the saved water and dipped the fabric.  There’s a bit of color…but only on the fold points.  Ah well.

Yup, my piece of fabric.  Two dips.  And, it’s pretty much as white as rice!

Well, the good news…lots of it.  The artichokes and beets are excellent.  I can cross this off my bucket list.  And, finally, it’s getting warmer…spring is coming.  And, more dye possibilities!!