start your needles

Fine threads, thick threads, wool and cotton, it’s all becoming strands of delish.

I was hesitant for the longest time about the wool, as i figured it was too “fluffy’, but have now fallen in love with it. I experienced “not all about sweaters and warm slippers” after working with it 🙂 Depending on your tension as you stitch, it can be more raised, more taking acceptance of the loft, but you can also draw it slightly tighter and end up with finer lines, whereas medium tension will give a fuller appearance in stitches that fill more space. The wools i’ve been using are classified as lace weight, which means while they look downy, they are as easy to use as cotton. (But i do recommend shorter lengths, not the longer than fingertips to elbow *i* normally use!)

The cottons have been a joy also, as they are easier (for me at least) to get a variegated dye happening. From a weight that is like using 2 strands of conventional embroidery floss, to one that imitates a full 6 strands, the colour variations are wonderful.

I decided too that labelling them only needs the type of dye–i’m not about to add all the mordants and modifiers, as it could get rather wordy!–the length and the type of fibre.  Some of these are also shorter lengths than i had intended, as i learn about tension on the niddynoddy as i wind the skeins, pre-everything! Prices will reflect that, but all are still worthy and long enough to be treasure. In the future, i intend 10 yard and 20 yard pieces, depending on the thread. (Most of these vary from 7-18 yards, though i erred on the side of caution: some may be slightly more than indicated, but none will be less. And the “20 yard” ones will be having their labels changed to reflect that they are more likely a generous 18!)

There are many more to wind still, and yes i kept some for myself, though none of the above, so it’s not a tease with any of them. 🙂 🙂 🙂 I still have indigo, potassium permanganate and a mix of the two to complete, so there will be those as well.


I’m still deciding on pricing and packaging, as with the cost of shipping, it’s probably better to sell these in sets of 2, 3 and/or 4. I want them to be something you can work with together, rather than just a “one off”. So far too, i am doing small lots, as i am only a one woman show,  so you’ll have to bear with me for availability! Pricing *will* reflect the hand dyed/naturally dyed “point of the exercise”, but will also be more than fair for the amounts (and the work involved to do them!). I hope to add these to the shop on the weekend, October 30th the latest.


becoming a purple thread

Certainly a vanity, thinking one knows everything, but i’ve always subscribed to “Learn something new everyday, and you know you’re not dead” — i *don’t* know everything, but i do my research and i’m happy to not only do the correct thing, but to riff on that once the lesson is learned. If i need an affirmation of something i’ve done or a puzzlement needs solving, i’ll ask, but i don’t JUST ask and expect the whole answer “with 8×10 glossies and paragraphs and arrows on the back” to be handed to me on a silver platter.

I remember asking a Contextural member a long time ago how she achieved a certain shade in her natural dyeing/ecoprinting, and she sweetly and truthfully replied “Every dyer has her secrets” with no smugness, and in all honesty. I took that to heart, learning what i could and often failing because i didn’t follow the basics first.

I’ve got that part well sussed now, and am quietly thrilled with the tried and true, and the experimenting. All of this past week’s naturally dyed threads here have notes on each as to what it is, but you’ll have to figure out certain parts for yourself 🙂

And the details in close-up:

Where these threads go next will be “the long white gown”,  metaphorically speaking.

first figure done!

Sweating bullets when it was done.

You can see how much the figure disintegrates as memory changes, diminishes and fades. But would it survive, maintain its integrity after being removed and transferred to the actual background?


I’ll mop up the bullets, and move on confidently to the other figure now.