Most of my childhood summers were spent out on a fishing boat or running around the docks with my brothers and any friends we had made.
I'm not quite sure what inspired me, but one summer when I was eight or nine I decided to find out whether salt water could be made to taste "un-salty." For some reason I thought baking soda would do the trick. And for some reason my mother was supplying me with baking soda for my experiments. At least until she found out that we were drinking it....
I'm still experimenting with concoctions, and funnily enough they still involve soda.
The baptistia has changed color and is now dying fabric to a shade of yellow.
I'm not disappointed that I haven't come up with blue. I knew that was not likely with what I was doing.
I did decide to pursue this a bit further after reading a post at wake robin. I poured a bit of ale into the dye bath. Smells really good right now. And interestingly enough the leaves have a bit of a blue sheen to them.
I'm going to let it sit a bit longer...
My "Many Moons" blanket started as a way to salvage a few moth eaten blankets. Now the holes needing to be mended are from Lola the nester and the fact that the grey wool is fairly fragile. I've decided that I won't leave it where Lola can find it anymore.
As for the mending:
What if I lay a left over square over a corner that is particularly ragged?
What if I lay a piece of lace crocheted by one of my great-grandmothers and that I had stitched to a piece of wool on top of another corner?
What if I crochet a circle and push it into a hole and then stitch it into place?
I like all these solutions, especially the crocheted dot. For a long time I've wanted to come up with a way to work a crocheted/knit piece of fabric and a woven one together. This might be it.
Done enough to use. There is still a bit more stitching to do on the other end, but it can wait-it's getting cold! I started this in Feb 2009, it's mostly hand stitched, and it has been quite a learning process for me. I think more than anything, it's given me confidence in my hand stitching. It lost a bit of it's checkerboard along the way, but I'm okay with that.
For the back I used a piece of silk my mother gave me. It's dyed with eucalyptus. I folded it over to front and stiched the edges to create the binding.
On to the next blanket:
One thing I learned from the first large square, it's much easier to stich smaller squares....
I've been playing, and playing with various ideas (what iffing I suppose), and played a bit more last night. The result was that my favorite wool square was the silver one and the decision that I needed a structure to build on before all of this was going to become a blanket. I decided that I would alternate gray and white wool blocks with circles reverse appliqued or appliqued to each square. I'm going to use silk or velvet for the circles. And then I'm going to stitch with a variety of colors in a variety of ways. I want the circles to be smallish for the most part. And random. I want the feeling of this to be very dimpled. I kind of see this as an intersection between planned and spontaneous.
A few other thoughts were reinforced as I worked my way through this:
How much I need to work with my materials before I know which direction I'm going to go. I'm not good at planning things out on paper or in my head unless it's going to be something really basic.
Keeping it simple is better for me.
I love texture and the relationships between colors.
That sometimes I think we deny ourselves possible paths because we want to be original, out of fear of copying. This may really be a creative crisis of our times because there are so many ideas out there and they are so easy to access.
From the stash of trash: wool blankets that are falling apart, silk scraps and yarn left over from other projects.