a journal: textiles, inspiration, musings

gumtree blanket

This long-term project is moving forward: the top is being assembled now; I will add some more stitching and then back it to make a snuggly blanket. I haven’t felt in any sort of hurry to finish it, as it is a lovely pick-up-and-stitch project; I enjoy looking at the wonderful prints that have emerged at different times from my eucalyptus bundles; some pieces have been individually dyed, some are leftovers from garments. ¬†I have bought some lovely fine soft wool fabric from Beautiful Silks and will dye this before using it as the back, so there will be plenty more stitching to do, as i will join the front and back pieces with some form of kantha-type stitching.

IMG_1523Have found a lovely part of the house to sit and spin ūüėć….. spinning improving and becoming much more relaxing, although as with most things I am learning that the more I learn the more there is to learn! I am spinning some lovely Beersheba Farm Castledale fibre, purchased at the Bendigo Wool Show.

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Bloom on the vat

A very promising sight this morning, lovely blue bloom on the fructose vat

IMG_1414And the ph was good at 11.4; so I had high hopes for a good strong colour; but in fact it was a fairly pale result, proving that my vat often has a mind of its own! Nevertheless some multiple dips and some over-dyeing produced some interesting results

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And even a couple more misty moons!

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My first indigo moon

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I have managed to revive my dormant fructose vat with a combination of methods…. heat, more fructose, more hydrated lime and finally a new starter added in! I ¬†find I want to overdye some of the pieces after they dry . Nice pile of garments growing, also small bits of fabric for a slow cloth that i am starting to plan. But most exciting was my first successful moon….

I love the moon circles that Jude Hill uses in her lovely Spirit  Cloths, and I have been learning some indigo and Shibori techniques from the  Shibori Girl website. I think this  will be the forerunner of quite a few moons!

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Saori cloths

the pile of saori cloth pieces is growing… becoming scarves and shawls, simple-pieced jackets, gifts …. adding to my quest to make or upcycle garments wherever possible. It’s a fun and very satisfying challenge! And the saori loom is so lovely to work with; a meditation, a chance to play instinctively with colour and texture.

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Today I learned how to ply my first two reels of spun yarn; it is definitely “art yarn” as it is quite bulky and textured……..good thing that’s just the way I like it! and the colours have worked out really interesting when spun together…a combination of some lovely brown fleece Mandy gave me to start to learn on, and a very bright multi-coloured fleece from First Edition in Euroa that I had purchased several years ago with the plan of felting a background for embroidery with it. The fleece looked pretty garish when I brought it home, must have been an odd moment when I chose it! so it has sat in the back of the cupboard till now, and I wasn’t sure how it would spin, but the resultant colour is looking much better than I thought and when I have spun enough it will be lovely to see how it weaves on the Saori loom.

 

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A fleecy journey

Little Gem and I are becoming better acquainted, after an initial period of not talking to each other in the same language..thanks to lovely and patient friend Mandy, I am actually starting to produce something resembling yarn, and enjoying the process!

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So of course I am wanting to try another step…..learning how to turn Rosemary’s old but lovely fleece into a spinnable [and dyeable] yarn.

Progress so far:

this

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to this

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to this!

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