Crazy Day

January 19th, 2016

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Today did not go as I planned so I made the best of it. Mr C took the new car to the dealership at 7:30 this morning to have a protective sealant put on it. He came home with a loaner and later, I asked him to take me to the studio to work on my dyeing. We got down to the lobby when I realized that my keys were in the car. Oops. So back to the condo, hoping it would not take too long to get the car back. Ha! It was 4:00. I did get lots of SDA work done which I often do at night.

As soon as I got the car, I ran down and rinsed out my gradations from yesterday and added some soda ash to the blue gradation. I put everything in a bucket and brought it  home.

It all got rinsed, washed, dried and ironed. I love that blue gradation which was done by the dilutive method, meaning a dye solution had water added going from dark to light. The other gradations are done by the additive method, adding more dye solution with each piece.

I got much better gradation with the dilutive method. I just love those blues.

Here is my 8 step yellow gradation:

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You can’t see much change in the middle pieces.

And I did only 3 step gradations with the turquoise and fuchsia. It doesn’t really show, but I got some nice mottling on these.

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I didn’t have time to do the high water dyeing in a bucket so I will go back and do that tomorrow.

 

Dyeing – Week 2

January 18th, 2016

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This week, we are doing gradations of the primaries – sun yellow, fuchsia and turquoise. I did a full 8 gradation of yellow because I use it quite a bit. I only did 3 gradations of the fuchsia and turquoise.

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I used plastic baggies for these.

I also did a blue gradation using Elizabeth’s divisive method: which involves beginning with all the concentrate at once, and then gradually reducing the amount of dye concentrate you pour over the fabric. These are still needing soda ash.

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Tomorrow, I will do the high water version to get a solid color – you can add salt to the water to help the process.

I broke down and bought a small fridge on Amazon. It arrived packed in 3 boxes and some stryrofoam. It was a comedy of errors watching us unpack it. I need to keep my dye concentrates cold and since I turn up the heat in the studio to batch my dyes, it was a necessity!

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I also finished the brown sweater set for my hair stylist’s baby boy, who is a red head.

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I am Dyeing to Show You

January 14th, 2016

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I think I mentioned that I am taking Elizabeth Barton’s online Basic dyeing class. Her method is new to me. You mix up a lot of dye concentrate to have on hand — we have done 6 colors. The soda ash is not added until the fabric has been in the dye for at least 30 minutes and you can wait until the next day. So, this week we mixed up our concentrates and then did a gray to black gradation. I think I like this method of having dye concentrate on hand, but I have to refrigerate it so I have ordered a cute little desk top fridge for my studio.

Here is my fabric batching:

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And here are my results. It is so hard to get grays and blacks that do not have purple or blue casts to them.

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I also would like to get more even coloring and not have the mottled effect – things to work on.

The other thing that has kept me busy is purchasing a new car. Mr C and I have made lots of changes in our life to bring down the cost of living on the planet to have more discretionary income in our retirement. Getting the Prius was part of that, but to be honest, we never fell in love with the Prius, for many reasons. So it is leaving us and we now have a beautiful small Class C Mercedes Benz. It was a loaner at the dealership and has very few miles on it and all the bells and whistles. We just love driving it.

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We decided we needed just one little splurge.

We also got a new mattress hoping it would help my sleep problems caused by my bum knees. I found this duvet cover which I love. It is reversible. Really looks great and suits our design aesthetic.

 

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Wordless Wednesday

January 13th, 2016

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A Hectic, Satisfying Day

January 7th, 2016

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When I took this quilt (without the tree) to my critique session last fall, the critic said it was not finished, it needed something else. I had always thought about putting a California Oak on it because you often see a lone Oak on the golden hills. I thought it might be too realistic for the overall tone of the quilt. But, today I did it. And, I am still not sure, but I sure love the tree.

I took off for the studio this morning to get this done. I cut a trunk.

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I auditioned some green fabrics and ended up using this batik. I think it worked well.

I fused the tree together on a teflon sheet.

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Then, I auditioned it in different spots on the landscape and fused it down.

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I took it home and quilted it.

I also finished this little quilt. I scattered a few more leaves on it before I added the facing.

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Tonight, we took the street car down to the Pearl to the opening of an art exhibit that 3 friends are in. I also retrieved my Blue Picasso Woman and brought it home. It has been traveling for a year and a half.

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I took all 3 of these quilts to Kristin LaFlamme who is taking them to Seattle with her tomorrow to be photographed by Mark Frey, who is a great photographer of textiles and art objects. Kristin has a 3-D piece that needs to be photographed for a catalog for a SAQA exhibit at the Textile Museum, Migration Stories. Here she is photographing it in our condo hallway for a video she plans to make of it in various sites.

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And so, I am feeling pretty good tonight. Got a lot accomplished. Tomorrow, I start an online dyeing class with Elizabeth Barton. While I was at the studio, I checked on my supplies. In this workshop she promises:

If you’ve never dyed before, this is the class to take. If you have taken a class but ended up feeling confused about the whole process, this is the class to take. If you have taken a class, and felt like it was all too much work, this is the class to take! If you have taken a class and had wimpy or muddy results, this is the class to take! If you have read about a class where you had to dye thousands of little square samples before you could even think about what you needed to make that quilt you have in mind, this is the class to take! If you want to be able to dye a reasonable approximation of any color you see anywhere, this is the class to take! In five lessons, I explain the process of hand dyeing in simple, safe, clear, easy to remember terms. We make enough dye concentrate in the first class to last us through the whole course – and beyond! You really don’t need to be mixing up dye every single time! There are only a few key factors to successful dyeing and I’ll explain them very clearly, so failure just simply is not an option! We will cover: dye mixing, gradation dyeing, pure versus mixed colors, how to derive your own recipes, how to dye neutrals and why you need them and the benefits of overdyeing. In the last class, working from a color inspiration source, we dye the fabric for your next quilt!