"One sees clearly only with the heart. Anything essential is invisible to the eyes." -The Little Prince - Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Dyeing for Taos

I recall Taos Pueblo as water blue eyes. I met a native who was selling earrings
of turquoise she stopped me in my tracks with her beauty.
That trip I shared with my little daughter with wonder through her vision I saw
it anew.
The color of sage and pinion and purple of the sacred mountains, the color
of the Rio, climbing the pueblo ladders, the rushing little river where we fished
together for trout, the picnic packed by our hotel for us to share, these are
the sights I remember and try to dye silk, as if. . . 

Red Ristra's carried home to form a sauce to douse the Christmas Tamales I
create every year. Luminaries to light the way to my house here in the wilderness
and of course the candles in the windows for those to find their way home, this is
what I think about while I go about my work.
This is the beginning of the Season, for me. . .

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Friday, November 26, 2010

I was Soooh Homesick for Santa Fe ~ But Camilla~Bloom Sent it to Me!!

Thanksgiving in Santa Fe is the best!
Nothing like that Pinion smell of fires burning
candle lighted tables
delicious food with that certain southwestern flavorful
RED chili sauce
family and friends and fiesta feeling
to begin the Holiday Season.
Except a package in the Post Office where I still have to turn a combination lock.
In my little historical town you have to be sure to catch the Postmistress while
it is open. My big worry! Ha.
I ordered this from . . .you guessed it. . .Magnolia Handspun!!!
I was lost for I used all I had and was waiting. . .
Voila ~ Santa Fe in a box!
Beautiful! I can hardly wait to begin.
AND not only that, Camilla sent the sweetest note AND a hank of her Kelp Garden colorway.
It got here so fast I couldn't believe it! I just ordered it on Monday and there was a holiday, too.
Just a note here to say that I have known Camilla for a while by just reading her blog Bloom.
I like her because she is a very generous and kind person who is always lending a helping hand.
She unselfishly answers questions and comments on many blogs, and when I find someone like that
I like to keep them around. I feel very lucky to have found her on her Montana Mornings blog.
I celebrate her new business and her courage to get out and try it!
She keeps thanking me. . .but I just want to thank her!
And now her colors inspire me to dye some silk!

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Sea Grass Magnolia Bag ~ Finished

Natural Indigo Dyed Shibori Lining
Signed "I didn't realeyes - 2010"

Close up of Front
Ultramarine Blue Leather Straps
Hand Dyed Silk Cord
Trading Bead Closure
Sea Grass Magnolia Handspun Fiber
Slow Movement Sewing
Completely Hand Made

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Wednesday, November 24, 2010


It is in the details
between the spaces
in the silence
I find

May you find the same
with family and friends.

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Monday, November 22, 2010

Fiber Chatter

The girls are talking about the place to buy straps for their new bags.


The first one came from Batiks, etc. in Wythville, Virginia

They have them, too. Along with Contemporary Batik.

Dharma Trading Company has all kinds of white silk and silk ribbon in white

to dye with Indigo Dye and other dyes, too.

and of course, Magnolia Handspun has the yarn.

Shibori Designs and Techniques by Mandy Southan has her book

which is most helpful to learn techniques in shibori using

many different dyes.

The girls hope this information is helpful.

They are thinking about how thankful they are right now and the gathering to come.

They want you to have a great Monday!

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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Magnolia Bag ~ Look What I Found!

uncanny how things happen sometimes. . .


I have been thinking about how to make these better. . .
I considered how nice it would be if they had straps. . .
But, I am very picky about things like that. . .
Not just anything would do. . .
I visited my local quilt store . . .
See what I found!

They come in pretty colors, too!

I am working on this new bag using Magnolia Handspun.
I love this magnificent fiber.
It is so colorful and full of interesting texture.
I can hardly wait to finish this one. I made it about 1 inch wider.
This is cutting it close because I do not want to run out of fiber. . .
If this works out it will take exactly the amount that I bought.
It is really fun to order just one beautiful hank of this to see what I can do.
Especially because there was only one left to buy.
I dislike seeing  lonely things. . .
I plan to research these straps to see what else this company has. . .
I will share this information just as soon as I do.

I need to think about Thanksgiving!

I am one very thankful person!

Have a happy Sunday!




Thursday, November 18, 2010

Magnolia Bag Tutorial

Supply List
Lock Hook
Straight pins with beaded heads
Measuring tape or ruler
Rug Canvas 3.75 squares per inch
1 hank of Magnolia Yarn in color of choice
Silk or batik cotton strips 3/4 inch wide by 75 yards long (made of short strips that will be joined as you go)
Silk to line inside of bag (I use hand dyed Shibori)
Silk or Cotton Sewing Thread to match Lining Fabric
20 inches by 3inches  strip of matching silk to make fastening cord
1 beautiful bead that has a hole all the way through, sideways
Linen Thread or strong cotton to attach Bead to Bag

imageUsing 3.75 Carpet Canvas, cut a piece that is 7.50 inches wide by 16.50 inches long.
imageTurn under all four sides. Make sure that you fold two squares under so that the canvas will not ravel.

imageThread the lock hook with a length of either batik, or silk, strips through the large eye of the needle.

imageWith the magnolia yarn pull a loop to the right side of the canvas using the hook end of tool.

imageNow, continue pulling loops through all the way down the length side of canvas.

imageAfter about 5 loops, pull through from the other end of tool the length of fabric, being careful not to pull too tightly. Leave a tail about 3 inches long of batik or silk strip, to be woven in, later.

Continue these steps to the end of the row, turn and just keep going until the canvas is completely covered. Note, you must catch both layers of canvas around the edges. It will be easier once you get past that point. You will develop a routine motion as you go. It reminds me a little of crochet.

imageEver so often you will need to join another strip of fabric to what is already being used. Take each strip end and cut a little slit. You take the end that is already being worked and into that cut you push the new end through it  and pull it through all the way. It forms a little flat knot which will easily pass through the eye of the needle.

Fold the piece in half.

Now we will seam it together. First, you need to remove fabric from eye of needle and replace it with the yarn. We are using the tool as a needle, now.
At the point where the fold is, this is where the first whip stitch goes.
imageYou can see, here, how the stitching is done, a little better.

imageHere it is finished.  Leave the tails and then turn the bag to other side and do the same steps with this.

imageI braid whatever strands are hanging loose after the stitching together and then just tuck them inside of the bag.

imageDo the same on the other side.

imageNow we finish the upper opening of the bag by stitching around with a piece or two of the batik or silk. This gives a finished look where we will attach the lining of the bag.

imageThe silk that is for the lining of the bag is cut to allow for the seam allowance of 1/2 inch around the two sides. Leave the top part open. Fold so that right sides are together. This will be the inside of the bag.

imageFold the top over to form the hem remember that the pouch is going to be the right side.

imageDouble check by inserting your hand inside the bag to make sure that you are not making the pouch too short. Adjust the hem fold accordingly.
Before hemming you will attach the closure cord and bead.

imageAttach the folded, in half, silk cord about one inch from top of bag and centered on the back using heavy cotton or linen thread. Make sure that you anchor it onto the canvas. Sew through it securely several times.


Attach the bead by sewing as above into the canvas, as well, to anchor the bead securely.

imageHem by using tiny whip stitches to attach to batik going all the way around the top.

imageSlip the cords under the bead. Tie a knot on each end of cord. This can be pulled to close the bag.

imageThis is the bag with the lining pulled out, just to take a look at it. Tuck back inside the bag.


How To Make Silk Cord for Magnolia Bag

I am posting the tutorial in a few minutes. But, I realized that I did not include directions on how to make the silk cord for the closure. So, here it is:

The piece of silk for the cord is placed upon your ironing board. Then pin it to the board with a beaded straight pin at the top.

Then, turn your iron to silk temperature with steam.

Now. at the end where it is not attached start rolling the strip between your palm and the ironing board. Keep twisting until it forms a cord. Steam and iron this section and keep doing this all the way down the piece of silk until the entire piece is twisted, stopping to steam and iron ever so often. The cord will stay this way.


I need to tell you that my very good friend SaraMuz told me how to do this cord. She is such a talented artist and we share a lot of history working together with fiber. Don't you think it is nice to have such good friends!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Magnolia Bag Tutorial Supply List

Supply List
Lock Hook
Straight pins with beaded heads
Measuring tape or ruler
Rug Canvas 3.75 squares per inch
1 hank of Magnolia Yarn in color of choice
Silk or batik cotton strips 3/4 inch wide by 75 yards long (made of short strips that will be joined as you go)
Silk to line inside of bag (I use hand dyed Shibori)
Silk or Cotton Sewing Thread to match Lining Fabric
20 inches by 3inches  strip of matching silk to make fastening cord
1 beautiful bead that has a hole all the way through, sideways
Linen Thread or strong cotton to attach Bead to Bag

Here is the first part with the supply list, I had some unexpected circumstances today to deal with and I did.
So, After my class tomorrow, I will post the rest of the tutorial.

Have a nice evening!

Arrival Magnolia Yarn!

I ordered this from Magnolia Handspun the other day;
it is here! Whooohooo.
Sea Grass goes so perfectly with indigo dyed shibori.
And she sent me a small skein of Robins Egg as a Thank you.

What service and what generosity!
Also, a very nice Thank you card came, too.

I am so ready to use this.

Later today I will post the tutorial for the magnolia bag.

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Looking At Life Through A Rear View Mirror 2009
Photo Montage

I am thinking of juxtaposition today

How it is to find meaning through chance

Melding unrelated thoughts and images

Old tech with new tech

I wander the streets
and looking
what will I choose

I found a doll in Amsterdam
High upon a shelf
I payed for this doll
I carried her to Denmark
I carried her to Paris
I carried her to London
I brought her home
to put her in a box.

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Her dress is shattered


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