16 February 2018

The "Over-the-Top" Valentine Heart

A few years ago I made two of these. Now that I have a sister, I have to make her an over the top bejeweled Valentine heart

Getting ready

Madeira Lana (50% wool thread)

Bead city

Top of heart

I never said I could embroider

However, I can bead!

The back of the heart was attached and the heart stuff (with love)!!

13 February 2018


From a major dyeing blunder

to am almost empty pallate

The promised 10 inches of powdery snow fell last night which made today "Snow Dye Day". Let's get on with the fun. I was a little  apprehensive about trying this again but I had made a strong concentrate of "grape", a new green with lemon yellow and navy and I had a nice bottle of turquoise. 

I made up a gallon of warm soda ash solution and soaked this shirt in it for about 45 minutes because I was busy mixing dyes and I figured extra time in the soda ash wouldn't hurt.

I also had these four skeins of #3 pearl cotton that had been getting in my way for a long time so I decided to dye them too.

A bucket of fresh Maine snow and a wrung out shirt full of promise.

 I always try to get it opened up completely with as few actual folds as possible then I "gather" it into the center leaving hills and valleys instead of fabric folded onto itself. I hope you get what I mean.

Covered completely with snow.

When I applied the dye, I started with the grape and scribbled it on followed by green and turquoise in the blank centers of the scribbles. I finally applied a back and forth line of plain blue making sure I got the turquoise and green all the way to the edges.

These top two are turquoise and green and purple and green with the bottom two purple and blue and green and blue. I like those combinations.

Going, going

Gone.......and I see some yummy colors that I love

This is what I was talking about. The green split out a bit into some small patches of yellow but I am very happy with this.

Front and back

The skeins on the net lingerie bag they were washed and dried in.


09 February 2018

Top with color removed

Today it is in the 40's so I am taking advantage of the great temps to boil my Thiox on my deck. What a stinky mess. I had to wear my big respirator. Just holding my breath didn't work (cough, cough).

I weighed the fabric and it was under one pound. I put my lobster pot ( for art ) on my hot plate with 1.5 gallons of water and then added the Thiox, synthopol and soda ash. It foamed. As soon as the fabric touched the liquid, the color went.

This is immediately after adding the fabric to the pot. Remember how red it was?

Below is the fabric after an hour of boiling. 

As soon as the fabric touches air, the exposed areas turn blue. 

Below is the fabric drained (in my backyard) then rinsed in water. It is now in the washing machine.

If you ever want to use Thiox even outside get a respirator - a serious respirator.

The shirt washed and dried photographed with a flash

and in indirect light

Not a drop of fuchsia in sight. Next snow storm, I am mixing FRESH GRAPE dye along with green and turquoise.

Tomorrow we are expecting 10 inches so stay tuned!!

06 February 2018

I'm ready

I have finally recovered from my HUGE disappointment over my artist shirt. To day I went to Google for help. I typed "using thiox to remover color from fabric". This is what I got:

 THIOX can be used to remove the color from most cotton, rayon, linen, wool, silk and blends which have been dyed with fiber reactive dyes (Procion) or direct dyes. Not all colors will come out 100%, but they can all be lightened enough for overdyeing. It can also be used to strip color from yarns, fabrics or already sewn clothing.
It will not necessarily remove all the color of all types of dyes from all types of fabrics. It is always best to first do a test before using it on something of considerable value to you


The instructions below are for one pound of fabric. You can divide or multiply to suit your requirements.
For each pound of fabric put into a pot:
  • 2 gallons water
  • 1 Tablespoon Soda Ash (Fixer)
  • 1/2 Teaspoon synthrapol or liquid dish washing soap
  • 1 Tablespoon color remover
Add the fabric and heat to a boil. While the mixture is simmering, add an additional 1/4 teaspoon of Color Remover every 15 minutes for an hour. (1 extra teaspoon total). Stir gently and simmer for another 15 minutes. Remove and rinse well.
I can't do this indoors here (snow and ice storm) but I will try this out in my garage with a hot plate. It is in the Art Greenhouse in my yard so a trek through lots of snow will ensue. I have decided I have nothing to lose since there is no way I am wearing a fuchsia top. You notice I didn't call it a dress since I don't wear dresses.

02 February 2018

Eccentric Concertina - the tip of the iceberg

MidSummer Maine 2018

 Monoprint, gelli print, paint, cut, fold, sew, mark with pen, pierce, punch, perforate, glue, couch, stamp, create mark making tools, collage, DESIGN. These will be the springboards for further work.
You don't want to miss this event

June 22,23,24
July 20,21,22


 First layers

 resolved pages

2 page spread

2 page spread

2 page spread

Three page


Two page 

Two page


30 January 2018

MidSummer Maine 2018

Announcing the new MidSummer Maine Event, June 22,23 and 24.

Our Visual Taproot

This event will center on mark making, textile process and spontaneous improvisational creation. We will be experimenting with mark making tools and a wide variation of fiber, in woven and non-woven forms, to create a visual bank for reference. The main thrust is on experimenting, playing, looking, and learning, taking our imaginations and creativity to places we have never been before. Although the main focus is on process and experimentation, we will explore and exploit these experiences, in creating an array of works on paper and fiber culminating in two books.

On day one we will make paste paper, to cover a traditional coptic stitched sketchbook, for documenting our experiences over the three days, and beyond, followed by two days of unbridled experimentation. These creative experiments can be bound into a book of many fibers as a potential resource for further work, our visual taproot.

Next year, we will be building on these processes and more, going further in the exploration of mark, materials, and creation. I hope to share this experience with you.

Class is limited to ten but a second event covering the same material will be offered  July 20,21 and 22 as well.

The three day workshop is $150. and there is  a materials fee of $75. Lunch will be served all three days and there will be a dinner Saturday night here for $10.  I have 3 rooms available to stay in for each event for $50. a night.

If you have ever considered coming to mid-coast Maine for a workshop this is the one you want to attend.Are you interested?  Please contact me using the Contact Form at the bottom of this page.

26 January 2018

I should have left it alone

The first shirt was gorgeous. Look at those fabulous colors.

 But the second shirt, the one in my size................

I should have been happy. I should have left it alone but noooooooo!!
It was too green and not as purple as I wanted it. I have only myself to blame. Instead of mixing up "Grape", I mixed up fuchsia and intense blue. My hand should NEVER touch a bottle of fuchsia ever again.

I ruined it. Now I am trying to come up with way to get that color out without destroying the fabric.