Thursday, March 31, 2011

A Spring Tea Party With Some Favorite Dolls - Remember Story Book Dolls?

My friend Beth featured her story book dolls on her table. I am not sure if she calls them story book dolls, but to me as a child that is what we called them. I envied my friends who had a collection of them.

This doll has her original dress crocheted in maybe the 1950's. What a treasure to still have.

Beth recently crocheted the dress and hat for this doll. It is just lovely.

If this doll isn't a breath of spring, I don't know what is. She models another one of Beth's recent creations.

I can't begin to imagine the amount of time Beth spent crocheting this one. It is amazing and so Southern Belle!

This is an overview of the dolls on display in the stage area. In a future post you will get to see some of them close up.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

My Slashed Coat Pattern - Student Work

I posted today on Quilt Art about a coat I had made from my Slashed Coat/Jacket pattern. The subtitle of mine is "My If I Wanted To Catch A Man In An Airport Coat".

I didn't want to and I don't want to. But everytime I wore it men would stop me and ask about it.

The first time it happened I was on the people mover at the Atlanta airport. A man struck up a conversation with me, which surprised me since I was past the age where men hit on you! He was very interested in the coat and very complementary about it.

It happened repeatedly - always younger men - and that is how it got this name! One of the men was the late Todd Beamer who uttered the unforgettable words "Let's Roll" on 9/11. I didn't get his name, but there was something about him I remembered when I heard the story and saw his photo on 9//11.

Several people asked where they could see a picture of it. Unfortunately I don't have a picture on the computer of it and it is not here with me. In place of showing it to you I am showing you a photo of one a student made. I helped her choose the fabrics. She did a fantastic job and it looks wonderful and elegant on her.

Mine is a lot funkier than hers. It is an olive cotton with red, black and camel peaking out in a variety of shapes from the underlayers of the slashing. I will try to find someone to model it and take a photo in a few months.

Until then, if you want to find a man in an airport, you are on your own!

I do have several copies of the pattern with me here. If anyone is interested in it they are $14.00 postage paid anywhere in the United States. Just email me at kay*at* if you are interested in it. First come, first served.

In response to many questions I am adding this to my post.

1. This coat does use a faux chenile technique.

2. The fabrics are NOT the cottons or rayons normally used for this technique.

3. The students coat I have pictured used a rough silk (linen like) for the outer layer. The inner layer is a wonderful coordinated multicolor Hoffman batik.

4. One layer is wool.

5. I am not sure what the 4th layer is.

The "Airport" coat uses very different fabrics than this one and has a totally different look.

A Spring Tea Party With Some Favorite Dolls

We have so many lovely creative women in our community. These are three of them.
Again, the ladies out did themselves with the Doll's Tea Party.

An elegant setting befitting this lovely bride doll.

I am going to share some of the table settings with you. They were all absolutely lovely. I did a better job photographing some of them and those are the ones you'll see!

I love the way this lady has mixed the depression glass with her china. There are so many other things I also love about this table.

I would guess this was a much loved and carefully treated doll from childhood. What a great combination of the plates, silverware and other items for an attractive table setting.

I have so much more to share so stay tuned for future posts.

While you are waiting think about getting out your best dishes, something to decorate the table and invite your friends over for a spring tea or lunch. You'll enjoy it and so will they.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

What Is So Special About Red And White Quilts?

There is something so appealing and crisp about red and white quilts. They are the second most popular color combination in quilts. Blue and white quilts are the most popular.

I changed the red to magenta and they are not nearly as appealing.

Next I changed it to turquoise and they are still not as attractive.

Even in blue and white, the most popular color combination for quilts, these quilts are not as effective.

Do you agree with me? What is your favorite color combination for a two color quilt?

I have just added this black and white version of the quilts. Thank you for sending it to me Dinaa Feit. I can always count on you.

And last, but not least I was able to change them to green!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Red And White Quilts - Infinite Variety

This is a design I created for a red and white quilt with Corel. Seeing the exhibit makes me think I should create this in fabric soon.

I am guessing many of you have heard about the exhibit of Red And White Quilts in New York, Infinite Variety. This is the collection of 651 red and white quilts all collected by one woman, Joanna S. Rose. The exhibit is her 80th birthday present to herself and a gift to New York. The exhibit that runs through March 30, 2011.

The way they are displayed is a work of art in itself. You can find more about this show at: http://http//

It is also available to download to your iPad or smart phone.

I have made ONE red and white quilt and I can't even find a photo to share with you.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Focus On Fiber Retreat -Part 10 - Underpainting, Dye Rags and Dolls

I did some underpainting on these pieces of fabric.
This is a technique I learned years ago from Jan Myers Newbury.
You paint the fabric with dye concentrates but do not add soda ash and let it dry.

After letting it dry you do a second dyeing with a dark color. I will use a shibori technique - pole wrapping or some other manipulation. The underpainting forms a pattern in the background of the second technique you have done. The resulting fabric has texture and depth that you could not have achieved any other way.

Rather than use paper towels to wipe up spills and clean you tools, it makes sense to use a piece of fabric. This is the piece I used in this class. Usually I continue to use the same piece for several dyeing sessions and get some gorgeous unexpected results.

The markings on this dye rag are fantastic. I want to save them as is. Possibly I will paint this piece of fabric with a solution of soda ash and let it batch. I am not sure if this will allow the markings to remain as distinct as they are.
As I was typing this I had another idea. I may just possibly frame this in a frame I bought yesterday. Time will tell!

And then it was time for moving around again inspired by Linda!

Yes, the group moved right into the other studio where Kathie Briggs was teaching a doll class. That is Kathie at the far left.

These are the parts of a doll being created by one of Kathie's students.

This is another work in progress being created by a student. She had so many fantastic fabrics to draw from.

Another fantastic doll!

Here you get to see two dolls.

It is quite evident Kathie had a very talented group of students, and it is also evident Kathie is a master teacher.

This concludes my coverage of Focus on Fiber. The actual retreat portion ends today so it is only fitting I am ending my coverage of it today.

Thanks to Mary McBride for making this retreat possible and thanks to Linda Dawson for an exceptional class.

Thanks also to the other students in the class for being such a great fun and creative group.

I hope to see you "Same Time Next Year"!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Focus On Fiber Retreat -Part 9 - Permanent Pleating and 3D Sculpture

I showed this lame melt-off piece on a previous post. I had no idea what I was going to do with it. When I opened it and looked at it I realized it could be a great 3D sculptural piece hanging on a wall. I found a perfect spot for it. I only needed 4 dressmaker pins to hold it on the wall.

This is the piece of sheer polyester I pleated on the pleating machine.
After I pleated it I boiled it in water for about 30 minutes to set the pleats.
In the background you see the fabric I started with.

I ironed this design on one side of the pleated fabric using one of the pieces of paper I had painted with disperse dyes.

I turned it over and ironed a different design on the other side.

After removing the threads I used to pleat this I have a piece of pleated and printed polyester that is now 8" x 32". It started out 8" x 72".
I can finish the edge with my serger.

This is a closeup of the piece. There is not as much design as I expected. I can see some great possibilities for this technique. This was a good learning experience creating this.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Focus On Fiber Retreat -Part 8 - Color Comparison - Silk vs. Cotton

I have been using pure dyes and mixing my own colors recently.
In this class we used dyes that were mixed colors.
I wanted to do a color test with some of my favorite mixed colors on both silk and cotton.
I laid a piece of the cotton/linen damask and the silk next to each other on a sheet of plastic.
I then squirted dye concentrates on each of them.

This is the result on the cotton/linen damask. It takes colors the same as 100% cotton.

There is white between each color on the cotton/linen.
I thought the colors would run together more but there was not enough dye liquid to make that happen. It actually is a better sampler of the colors since they are separated.

This is the silk scarf I dyed with exactly the same colors. The dyes migrated together more on the silk.

The colors I sampled were Chino, Chinese Red, Curry, Kiwi, Mustard, Raspberry, Bronze, Loden, Marine Blue, Hot Chocolate and Chino, not necessarily in this order.

In addition to each fabric taking up the dye differently you can see that the results of some of the exact same colors were different on the cotton and the silk.
That is the nature of these dyes.

Colors are flatter when used on cotton and more vibrant on silk, that is the nature of the fabric.

Another observation I made is that some of the colors had a haloing or fade out on the edges as the colors in the dye attempted to separate out.

Feel free to click on any of the photos for a larger view.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Focus On Fiber Retreat -Part 7 - Carter Smith style

The first project we did in Linda's class at the Focus On Fiber Retreat was this silk scarf. I had no idea where I was headed but just did what Linda told us to do.

Each one of these photos can be clicked on to see a larger photo.

When I opened the bundles after we had done our three different processes I was absolutely amazed at what had happened. Each process made something different happen and together they made a work of art.

This is a closeup of one section of the scarf.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Focus On Fiber Retreat -Part 6 - Indigo Dyeing

I mentioned previously that I was not at all excited about doing indigo dyeing.
Now I am in LOVE with it.

This is one of the small pieces I did. The texture I got from simply scrunching and dyeing this is absolutely amazing.
This is Kona cotton.

I dyed this piece of Kona in the same scrunched bundle and the shading is quite different.

This was pole wrapped to get this texture. The fabric is a cotton/linen damask.
The damask adds another dimension to the texture I got from the pole wrapping.

This silk scarf was also pole wrapped. I did some folds before wrapping it.
My girlfriends said this is my new best color to wear.

I have plans to wear the scarf this week when I go out to dinner.
I am anxious to work with the other fabrics to create something quite wonderful.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Focus On Fiber Retreat -Part 5 - Disperse Dye Printing and Melt Off

I am continuing blogging about Focus On Fiber and hope you are enjoying it.

Thank you for reading my blog. While you are here feel free to look around at many of my previous posts. The column on the right lists various topics I have discussed. If any of them interest you just click on them and the posts on that topic will appear for you to read.

I want to share some more of the work I did at Focus On Fiber with you.

This is a piece of paper I painted "Jackson Pollock style" with the disperse dyes.

This is the print on a piece of fabric. You can print several times with one painting. I printed this 4 times and then did a few more partial prints with it on the this same arrangement. I will still be able to use it quite a few more times.

We also worked with lame. This is Gina's lame neatly wrapped around a pole.

This is my lame wrapped not so neatly on a pole.

We melted out some of the metal and then dyed the nylon that remained. This is an overview of the piece I did. Had I wrapped it as neatly as Gina did I think it would have been a lot more effective!

This is a closeup of the processed lame. It is hard to really appreciate in a photo. It has a lot of texture.

I can't wait to share more of the things we did with you in more posts!

Linda H made sure we got up and moved around to keep in shape!