Monday, October 31, 2011

A Hole In One

Actually they both had holes, but I fixed one.
Can you believe that?
I actually replaced a sock heel!
I am so impressed with myself.
 It looks a little drawn up in the photo, but the new heel
 fits perfectly!
 I am anxious to do the other one.
It wasn't that hard and well worth it
as the socks were not very old.
 I just used the wrong yarn for the heels.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Some of these things are not like the others..

Dorset Buttons
on a printed and stitched piece
used as a temporary background.

Here are several Dorcet buttons. I see a couple of them ended upside down! Oh well. They are all pretty obvious. The multicolored ones are made with hand dyed commercial thread. The pastel pink one and the blue one are made with Pearl cotton that I dyed myself--the pink is with a plant dye of some kind and the blue with indigo. The blue one has a double ruffle of buttonhole stitch. The second row is worked with two stitches in each space. The pink one has a "filler of rayon thread. The plain beige one (oh darn it is upside down also!) is done with this really old Pearl cotton from England that I found in the thrift store. It took me half a day to unravel it and then I got it off center! The thread was so fine it was like doing it in sewing thread. I don't know if I will try that one again!.

Morning has broken...

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

More Toggles

These toggles are addictive as are all the buttons really. I dreamed about them last night and one of the things in the dream was a ball button made out of pieces of left over thread. I had to make that one right away this morning. It needs a little work, but I think it has some possibilties. What do you think? You are probably just tired of buttons. I am working on other things, honestly, and I will show some of them soon, It is just that I have never taken an online class before and it has been so much fun. I am sorry that it ends this week. I will miss everyone!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Who's Got the Button

Are you tired of buttons yet?
The class is almost over, but I had to show you the latest.
We are now doing
These are going to be fun, although they are harder then they look.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Sunday, October 23, 2011

And Then There Were Five

I bet you are getting tired of
I am doing other things
I am really, but these
are very cute!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Button Button

I am still making buttons for Karen's class. I found five embroidered napkins in the linen drawer that I thought would be fun to work with. I think they are from Peru because of the little hats the people are wearing. Each button is an inch and seven eights. Two are finished, one is in work and two to go!
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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Button With Padded Embellishment

Button number three for Karen's class. The center part of this is about an inch and a half.
I wonder what we will be doing next!

B Button

B Button
Needleweaving and French Knots

Sunday, October 16, 2011


OK. I did join the class.
It was not too late.
Here is my first button.
It is an inch and a half in diameter.
It is bright white, but looks grey here!

Thursday, October 13, 2011


And now for something completely different.
I wanted to do something different. I am a bit tired of sewing little running stitches by hand or machine, at least for the moment. I have been following Karen Ruane for some time and I really wanted to take her online class on making buttons and puffs. You can see all this here. However, I didn't sign up and time has marched on etc. The puffs look like they are made from Yo-Yo's. I have known how to make Yo-Yo's for years (haven't we all!) and I recently bought a cute little gadget for making them (I have no idea why!). All this is to say that I decided to make some "puffs" on my own, try out the new Yo-Yo maker while referring to Karen's photos for help. Big mistake. Let me say right here that I should have taken the class! It took me all day to make the ones you see in the photo plus a couple of others that are not pictured. I tried a new method on each one. I stuck myself every time I picked up the needle. My remarks all day consisted of "ouch", #@%*&&" and the like. I think I did everything wrong. One "Puff" is so tiny I could barely hold it. One is too big. None of them are "just right". I don't know how Karen does that wonderful embroidery on hers. I tried doing it before I gathered them and after. I stuffed them too much or too little. What a day. On the plus side, I did learn a lot. One of the things I learned is how much easier it would have been to

Monday, October 10, 2011

Fresh Out of the Dye Pot

My yard is covered with dry Oak leaves. They have blown into the garage as well.
I was sweeping them up a month or two ago and stuffed a bunch of them in my "dye" crock pot
along with a piece of iron. There they stayed, soaking in water (I honestly don't remember adding the water) for many weeks. A couple of days ago, I bundled up some muslin and dropped it in. It took on a nice dark color right away, but I left it there for a day or two. Finally, I decided to turn the crock pot on. I "cooked" it for about an hour yesterday, then turned it off and let it sit until this morning. When I took it out and rinsed it, it was purple. Really pretty, but the purple left somewhere in the rinsing process. I was left with the piece you see on the bottom left and the upper right. Do you see the heart? There are actually two of them, but one is perfect.

Next to that fabric in the same picture, is a strip of muslin dyed in red food coloring, the professional kind. I wrapped the fabric around a stick and left it in the jar for several weeks. Look at that red!  Too cool.

Then, while I was messing around with all that, I thought I should see about the jars I have on the Solar dyeing shelf in the garage. I hadn't messed with them for a while and I was pretty sure they were empty. Surprise! An oak leaf and copper scrap one that has been there for months had a rather large piece of fabric in it. I had forgotten all about it and it was quite dark. I think it is the darkest thing I have dyed with plant dyes. It is apparently a good idea to forget about them. (I hope that bodes well for the avocado and silk I have buried in a flower pot). Anyway, this was a piece of muslin that I tied in knots on the diagonal, wrapped in bailing wire and the circle was made by tying around the plastic cap off a spice jar. If you look closely, you can see the shaker holes. I think I will change my plans for the day and do some more dyeing.

Friday, October 7, 2011

A Prize Winner

My machine embroidery, Butterfly Totem was given an award last night at the opening of the Fiber Arts show in San Antonio. I received the Warrior Award and I have already forgotten everything about it except that it is given by a private individual. I was also lucky enough to get to talk to the judge, Ilze Aviks in person and her opinions were very helpful. It was a great show with interesting work. A piece by Susie Monday took first place.
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Thursday, October 6, 2011

Completed Puzzle

I thought I would show you what I did with the knitted/crocheted "puzzle" pieces that I shared earlier. I thought of several things to do with them, but most of them involved making a lot more pieces and my short attention span did not find that appealing. Also, I don't really need a blanket and I wouldn't wear a sweater or have much use for another shawl. So, a scarf was a good solution. It is funky enough to appeal to me, but not too funky to wear in my small Texas town. It didn't take me very long to complete, so the pieces weren't hanging about getting dusty. I like it. I might even make another. If you would like to make one too, here is what you do:

Collect a basket full of yarns that look nice together.
Pick out a pair of knitting needles and a crochet hook that will work with most of your yarns.
(I used size 3 needles)
Put them in your basket along with some scissors.
Take the basket wherever you go.
Start making shapes. Have fun.
Put them together to make a long strip.
 (A design wall is handy for this.)
Put it around your neck and go out on the town!

I think this is the first time I have written a "tutorial". What do you think?

Oh and by the way, I joined my shapes with a crocheted zig-zag that I really liked.
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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Also Accepted 2011

This stitching, Terra Incognita, made it into the Fiber Arts show as well.
I went to pick it up and found them hanging it on the wall!
Hooray. Three out of five!!

New House

It is becoming a real house!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Accepted in 2011

These two pieces were accepted into the San Antonio Fiber Artists exhibition.
The one on the left is Butterfly Totem, a machine embroidery
The one on the right is Fruit of the Vine (shown here unfinished) a hand embroidered mono print.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Some New Work

Here are a couple of pieces I have been working on. I tried some things that I haven't done before and I am not sure what I think. This time next week, I will probably be cutting them up! But they are moving in a direction I want to go. The untitled piece on the left is machine embroidery on pieced, painted and collaged canvas. The pink and black piece, Terra Incognita, is quilted and embroidered monoprints, arranged in overlapping panels. Both are attached to stretched canvases.