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Our Projects

We have a group project every year and each of us creates a wide range of individual projects. This page is where we show off some of the things we are doing.

Note: Occasionally we have a program that is only open to members or guests who have pre-registered. The meeting on August 21st is one of those times. Those attending must have registered and done the preliminary assignment in order to be present and participate in the activities we will have that day. The results of the workshop/meeting involving dyeing fibers will be available for viewing on the website later in the month.

July 17, 2016 – We Are Ready to Dye!

On a perfect summer day we met at Phyllis’s to prepare for our dye workshop next month. We needed to mordant our yarns and fabrics to prepare them to “take” the cochineal and osage orange dyes we will use next month. For dyers a mordant is “a substance used in dyeing to fix the coloring matter“. In our case we are using alum.

After weighing all our fibers, we soaked them thoroughly to ensure they were wet throughout:

fiber soaking in water

We measured alum by weight, using one-tenth the weight of the dry fiber, and put it into a small bit of water which we heated to dissolve the alum. After removing our thoroughly wet fiber from the pot and wringing it out, we added the alum and fiber to large pots of water, heated it and simmered it for an hour.

moving soaked fiber to simmer in alum water pots

And then we hung the fiber on the fence to dry.

fiber hung on the fence to dry


While all this was happening, we had plenty of time to talk and show each other our latest projects.

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April 17, 2016 – More Shibori

We had a lovely meeting with just a few choice members showing up: Sharolene, Frank, Lotus, Marcia and Phyllis. We continued with our indigo-dyed shibori project. There are some interesting comparisons of wet versus dry indigo in these pics. They are duplicated to show how much darker the wet indigo is.

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This is Lotus Baker’s handspun handmade beautiful vest that she made for the CNCH fashion show a couple of weeks ago.  You can’t tell by the look of it but it has a wonderful feel and drape. She made it using plain weave on her rigid heddle loom. These photos don’t do it justice.

March 20, 2016 – Egg Decoration

We had a fun meeting yesterday decorating eggs. Attendees were: Sandy, Marcia, Phyllis, Sharolene, Frank, Sage, Aviva, Ann, and Elaine. Sharolene tried some unsuccessful indigo dyeing on some mystery fabric, Aviva and Sage knitted, Sharolene and Sandy did egg decorating.  Sandy dyed one egg in some older yellow dye, which worked fine, although the dye itself was not reusable any longer. Sharolene and Sandy experimented with a new to them method of dyeing eggs with fingernail polish. It was quite simple. The fingernail polish floated on the surface of room temperature water and the eggs laid on top and the polish stuck to the eggs in delightful ways.  Ann used a silk transference technique where she tightly wrapped an egg with silk and then boiled in vinegar water for 30 minutes. This process transferred the dyes from the silk to the egg. Beautiful.


Easter Egg Dyeing

We are planning to dye eggs for Easter at our meeting tomorrow. Although we have done this before, sometimes the hard boiled eggs have not fared well. One of our members has given us a tip on how to prepare our eggs for a longer lasting outcome. Here are her instructions:

I do a larger hole on the big end and just a little hole on the small end of the egg; scramble the yolk with the needle, and blow things out the bottom. We always rinsed ours. Bring copper wire to make a ring-and-handle big enough to press your egg down into your dye-cup while it fills with liquid, and to hold it up while it drains again.

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We will be posting our results!