Saturday, May 30, 2009

The final task...

Yesterday, I got together with Joyce and Evalyn, the other two ladies I worked with on the Golf shoe bag project. We met at Joyce's house to put together 80+ sets of golf shoe bags, tissue covers, eyeglass cases and Evalyn's 'Cool Collars', plus biz cards and collar instructions. What a blast! We had it all done in a little over an hour and it is now ready to be picked up by the client. Here are some pix of the three of us and the bags:

These are some of the bags before we 'stuffed' them.
That's Evalyn on the left, Joyce on the right, and me hiding in the back. Joyce's husband was kind enough to man the camera.

Joyce is playing 'Vanna' here...

Don't we look happy? We are! We're done!
Here are the bins of 'Stuffed' bags, waiting to be picked up.
What I didn't get pix of is the three of us moving down the assembly line and stuffing the bags. We didn't run into each other even once! Way ta go, gals!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Shibori experiment continued

As promised, here is a picture of the stitched shibori shirt I posted about yesterday. The sleeve on the left of the picture and the body of the shirt on the right side are done using the mokume stitch, which resembles woodgrain. Diagonally down the center, I used the karamatsu stitch, which is concentric circles stitched on a fold. The rest of the shirt is scrunched, and I dyed it using low water immersion. Below are some closeup shots:

My impression overall is that combining the patterns made the shirt too busy. However, I do love the individual patterns, and will be continuing to experiment and improve my skills in these methods.

Friday, May 22, 2009


As promised, I am posting pictures of my next experiment with karamatsu and mokume shibori. I used the methods on a t-shirt:

In this picture, I have already begun to pull the running stitches taut. I created a series of concentric circles on a diagonal fold (see the 'scalloped' area to the left). Then I stitched rows of running stitches from the side of the shirt to the circles.

This is the sleeve on the other side, before I pulled the stitches to gather them.

We've had rain all day today, and by the time I dyed and washed the shirt, it was too dark to take pictures. So I will try to get some taken tomorrow and post them.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Karamatsu and Mokume experiment

Well, now that the last bag has been sewn, and the thick layer of fur vacuumed up, I am back to my shibori experiments. I received the book I ordered on shibori, read through it and found good written and visual instructions on a number of techniques. So I am back to trying them out on scraps of old t-shirt. Here is the latest:
The pattern on the left is mokume, a series of parallel running stitches. On the right is karamatsu, created by folding the fabric and using a running continuous stitch to form concentric circles. Hard to describe, and I will post pictures of the process as I go along. Right now I am using these stitches to create a design on a t-shirt, so I will post pictures of the various steps.
It's good to be back dyeing again! Of all the creative techniques I have learned and used over the years, I think dyeing is the one I enjoy the most. It's messy, and at times frustrating, but I love the many different ways I can use it in my art... and it satisfies my constant craving for color more than any other medium!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Chicken Feathers?

Whoa! My workroom looks like someone has been plucking chickens! I've been cutting the linings for the golf shoe bag project, and the last batch is long-haired and white... what a mess!

This is a picture of my friend Joyce, who started this whole thing and me holding the last bag cover for the project. On the work table to the right, you can see a couple of pieces of fur lining, and ALL OVER MY BROWN CARPET are shreds of fur! Needless to say, once I am totally done (I'm thinking by Wednesday), the whole room is getting a thorough cleaning! Hard to believe that we've only been working on this project since April 24, and we should be completely done by the end of next week... 90 bags, 90 purse-sized tissue holders, 90 eyeglass cases, and 90 'cool collars' ... two weeks ahead of schedule! Woo-hoo! By my count, I've gone through close to 12 sewing machine needles and about 4 rotary blades, and countless bobbins-full of thread, and close to one cone of thread for the top of the machine. Oh, and over 60 yards of webbing for the zipper pulls and bag handles... good grief! I'm thinking I will enjoy a little kick-back time after this, and Joyce promises that lunch is on her! Oh, and for Evalyn too, who did all the zippers, and is responsible for attaching the linings to the bags... we BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAD!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

My next attempt

I did another attempt at mokume shibori yesterday on a scrap of t-shirt fabric, along with a medallion just to use up some of the fabric. Here is the result:
I'm still not getting the look I want, but I am enjoying the results I'm getting, even so. And I'm loving the colors! I'm using Dharma's Plum Blossom, Lilac, Golden Yellow and Sage Green.
And I'm sure I will get better results once I have received the Shibori book I sent off for and have a chance to read through the various techniques.

A little experimenting

I've been a busy bee, stitching away on my golf-shoe bag project for over a week now, and we have made great progress. Woo-hoo! The client saw the first completed bag yesterday, and loves it... another woo-hoo!

I especially liked this pattern:

This is a pattern I have been crazy about for a long time, but never figured out how to create it. Elizabeth talked about how she created her samples, and based on her description, I tried two versions: first accordion folding the fabric, then sewing a running stitch across the folds; the other version, I sewed a series of rows of running stitches, then gathered them up and tied off. Here are the results:

As you can see, neither experiment came close to replicating the pattern. I found a website that gives a little more information here, and have another experiment batching that might come a little closer. I sacraficed one of my hubby's old t-shirts and cut out a square of it to use, since I really want to do this pattern on t-shirts. We'll see...

Meanwhile, I ordered a book on shibori which was recommended to me by someone on my dyer's forum... can't wait to get into it!