Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The day after it didn't feel like Monday

All day yesterday I kept having to think of what day it was. Not sure why but I kept thinking that I was missing something and I had this longing that just seemed to cloud my day even though the sun was scorching hot. I don't write much about my life in the past here but I will say that I am a survivor. I suppose there are a lot of survivors in the world. It could be from anything but it is from many things. I'm grateful to be here. However some days the past just seems to flood into my day .. it never has my permission and usually its not associated with reminiscing nostalgic memories. It is generally a subtle awareness like a creeping fog after a long rain. It clouds my vision with unpleasant feelings. Sometimes I want to escape from it, most times I just have to sit through it and these times it's a blessing to have some way to creatively process this STUFF. I have many ways that I can do that and sometimes that one creative outlet just seems to make itself known. Lately I have really enjoyed stitching and dyeing. I have also been drawn to the use of silks for dyeing. I've been outside in this heat creating some solar dye pots. I have three going.

The stitching here on my blog is a small piece that I am doing as part of the magic diaries series that I am happy to participate in. I have learned some really interesting methods of stitching. This piece is my first attempt at weaving fabric and I have tried to make it a sort of nine patch. The fabric is silk that has been dyed with eucalyptus ( a gift from the blueberry man) and I have to say I just love the softeness of silk fabric. And I can't tell you why but I had a scrap of a cashmere sweater that had been washed and felted some and I have used that as the backing. Its so soft to hold and it's just the right piece to work on for comfort .. for passing through some of the tough days. It soothes me. I have no idea yet what else I may do with it. But it may be a center piece to something larger. It will be one of my pieces to arrange with something else I think. I did invisible baste it but my stitches were close together so you can sort of see where they are by the indentations of the fabric I love how the whole thing feels. I learned the stitch on the circle and the thread beads from Jude. The dyeing from India Flints book. The other dyeing that I am doing I have picked up from blogs and other stitchers that I follow. Here are some photos of whats cooking outside.

 Ok in the blueberry pot I added a few cotton pieces and some silk. The top knotted piece in my blue glove hand is silk that I knotted before throwing in. To the right of that is the unknotted silk and below that is the same piece dried. I do love the purple shade when it's wet and it appears that the color just turns to more violet or grayish purple as it dries and I did one piece that I haven't photographed that just looks straight gray. That was after a vinegar bath. The lace looks pretty here but after being in the sun a day I didn't like how it looked so I dunked it in the walnut dye. Above the lace is a small embroidered napkin or towel. Again it looks really pretty wet but it has reverted to that more dingy purple upon drying. Just below here is a large photo of a pot that I have had brewing outside for about a month. I have had a lesson in this dye process and no doubt it is written about in dye books etc, but I tend to learn things the hard way and one of my walnut dye pots sprung a leak after I put a cup of vinegar along with a copper pot. Imagine your dye pot rusting ?? Duh .... oh well .. live and learn. SO I didnt want to throw out the really interesting liquer that seemed to be there in that pot of copper. So I went outside and put it in a crock pot that I had been using for some dying. I put the contents of the rusted pot in there and just left it with the lid on and forgot about it. Below is what it looked like with the lid just off after all that time.
 I'm sure there is some scientific name for whats happened here but I don't know what that is. But it had a fabulous texture and made for some pretty exciting photographs!!! This shows the inside of the pot and that great texture! Then .. I did a what if .. I have been experimenting all my life and thought hmmmmm wonder what it would do to a piece of silk??? I ran inside and found a piece big enough to cover the dish. The following photos show the progression. First one on the left is over the pot, next touching the liquid and then I put the lid on and the next photo is one day later. I got way excited about how it's picking up colors from whats brewing in there!!! Pretty neat .. I'm going to leave it for week if i can and see what develops!! Then the last photo is of me with my golashes on sitting on a chair trying to get cool!! Have a lovely day!!