Friday, July 27, 2007



coreopsis with alum

more dyeing stuff

so...i'm taking fiber out of dye jars and getting lovely and interesting results. I have learned that if you go into natural dyeing with few expectations you'll be happier...sometimes results are not at all what you expect. this particular silk is using a combination mordant (alum and copper) and dyed with daylilies. For people who asked...pic daylilies as the day that they bloom ends...
Here is an example of rather odd results. Marigolds are supposed to yield bright yellow results...this particular marigold look fairly green to green-ish yellow. ODD.

Here i have some silk dyed in an unlabeled exhaust pot (oops!). on the right is the silk rinsed right out of the dye pot. middle, a vinegar dip, left amonia dip. i took the silk out of the dye pot and divided it into 3 parts, so this is the same dye pot even! wild...

i don't use distilled water (which is bad i know :-)
this makes me suspect that black hills water is somewhat acid.
Here's the same thing with silk dyed in Poppies. Not as wild a difference, but definitely a response.

Here's Daylily directly out of the dye pot. Here's some of the above daylily separated off...right vinegar, left amonia.

so cool! here they are...left, ammonia; middle, vinegar; right no dip!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Daylilies do the coolest things...

when used in dyeing! YAY. so today my bump of silk arrived and i mordanted some and am now dyeing it in various flower dyes. OMG, I love dyeing, i love silk...eeek.

so, I'm putting alum-premordanted, wet, unrinsed silk and it did the totally coolest thing. Here's pics!
Here you can see the dye without the silk in it...bright red-wine kind of red! PRETTY!!!

Now, I put in the silk and ...

OMG...BLUE! eeek!
More and more and more blue as the pH changes to basic!
It changes gradually until it is all somewhat of a blue-purple!

Here's all the newest silk...on the right we have the jar of red-daylily dye turning blue, then the orange-y yellow coreopsis, then hollyhocks, then rose (don't know if that will do anything!), then petunias, then another daylily jar already turned all the way blue! YAY...Can't wait to see how they turn out. Plus i went and got stuff to try iron and copper mordant as well! HEHHEHEHE!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Dyeing Season

I love summer...i love the flowers, gardening, the sun, etc., etc....but most of all I LOVE natural dyeing. For two years now i've been doing solar dyeing with flowers. so it begins. I am steeping dye on my back porch...poppies, day lilies, marigolds, coreopsis, etc. I can't wait to see the colors of fiber!

This jar is filled with rose petals...i'm not sure it'll dye a darned thing, but my MIL saved them...and boy it smells super.

This jar full of Marigold from my garden is looking rather pink...which is weird. usually marigold give a rich golden yellow...I guess we'll see what happens.

Coreopsis are a new dye plant that I'm trying. I love the pretty yellow and red flowers and the dye is already looking quite promising.

Of course, tons of stuff is looking awesome. My MIL's marroon day lilies which are gorgeous alive are promising a beautiful color of are poppies, and other day lilies and more!

Can you tell I'm excited? It's Dyeing Season!!!!!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

new bunny pictures

Unfortunately today two more bunnies died :-( It would seem that they are ready to be out of the nest eating and such. these two tried to get down off the porch and hurt themselves enough so they died.

the other three are doing well...we decided (saps that we are) to feed them at least for the moment since apparently they are not ready to leave mom yet. the book said a month or so...

anyway, so we picked dandilions and clover and a little lettuce and put it in a basket, which they readily hopped into...then cover them back up! But not before we took pictures!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

no more carpet

at least not in the bathroom. for those of you who have been to my house, this picture will look a little odd, for those who have not, let me explain. We bought an older trailer 2 years ago. For reasons beyond all reason, the owners before us, carpetted the bathrooms. yes, that's right, that place where the floor gets wet everytime you take a shower, and unfortunately, when the toilet overflows occasionally, (YUCK). So on Monday, I made up my mind. I knew there was old linoleum under the carpet. No way of knowing how good/bad it would be. I decided to pull up the carpet. I've been planning on tiling the bathroom for, oh, like 2 years now!
so, after lots of heaving and pulling, up comes the carpet. then there's all those silly tackdown strips, and the staples, and nails and such. Finally the carpet is gone! YAYAYAY. Today i bought paint for the walls...a sort of ivory color, tile for the floor, slate blue and grey. Tomorrow...i'm painting... Tile after.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

yard work

so the kids and i spent the afternoon (it finally cooled off enough so we could) working in the yard. I've been working on a dye garden and am making more space for it!

this raised garden was created last summer. it started out as a huge patch of weeds surrounded by some landscape timbers. It got cut in half when we put in the fence for Tuck and then i rebuilt it, pulled out all the grass, planted a variety of flowers, which are starting to do well...marigolds, coreopsis, poppies, and more. there's also 4 tomatoes back there in the back and some radishes and lettuce and spinach (which the Bun family and relatives ate).
Here you can see where we removed tons of gravel (creating the little path you'll see later) in front of the shed behind the big tree. the plan is to plant this area with various flowering dye plants! (mostly wild flowers that are drought resistant and don't need lots of care!
I also plan to add a bench out here to sit...and a trellis over the end of the path with something flowering growing on it.

I'm thinking some kind of decorative fence here from the edge of the trellis that will go over the path past the tree..

Clearly i need to put something different around this little bed...I've been recycling existing materials!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

bun family pics

unfortunately one of the little bunnies on the back porch fell (through the slats that make up the floor) and died so i felt required to attempt to rearrange the wool enough so the rest wouldn't do the same. i did grab these two pictures whilst taking about half the wool and putting it away, and mounding the rest up on the table cloth that had been holding it before mommy bun rearranged. Hopefully now the rest will be safe for another couple weeks, until they are old enough to start eating my lettuce & their mommy!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

the road home

The rockies were amazing...the drive home was interesting. Between the semi trucks, the campers and the 80's red escort, the uphill grades were pretty tough...but it was in the end worth it.

we're home safely...Route 66 has effected my life permanently...I'd do it again tomorrow. but there's dozens of other places i want to see too...

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

there's more bunnies!

the wool was blocking me from properly closing the door, in attempting to move a the edge a little...oops! i uncovered more bunnies...

one looks older than the others...not sure what the deal there is!

i just covered them back up and decided i didn't need to close the door...but not before i grabbed the camera... and snapped a couple more pictures.

bunnies on my back porch

I was drying wool on my backporch (like i always do) and apparently my wool is really lovely and soft and bedlike...because these cute little guys invaded... i'm sure hoping their mommy comes back to feed them soon.