Have been on the lookout for ‘dodder’ for several years now….. this year, after the mild Spring and higher moisture, I found many clumps scattered here and there. Exciting!

Here is a link for more info about dodder… if you are interested.



Little granddaughter sized tee shirt…… using dodder as an eco print element along with cotinus leaves.

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Shirt dyed in a dodder dye bathe …..


Fun find….. and even more more experiment!

The last of the Persian Berry….

Not sure when I will decide to splurge on more Persian Berry. ALTHOUGH a little does go a long way!

Dyed three shirts this time. Two for the rug rats and one for me.

The two for the girls were pretty basic. Dyed the shirts with the Persian Berry then overlaid them with smoke tree  leaves and ‘flowers’, guava and some little dried out eucalyptus leaves. The smoke tree leaves printed green!! What a magical delight!

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Then I went on to make my shirt. A little more complex process.

Took the Persian Berry dyed shirt and shibori dyed it in Black Walnut. It was not quite what I wanted…. not enough contrast. So while the tiles were still clamped on, I dipped it into an indigo* vat. Yes! Contrast!!

I then took smoke tree leaves and flowers and printed them in the yellow resisted areas. I am pretty happy with the outcome!

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*This is the last time I will use pre-reduced indigo. I had no idea that it was synthetic, and not just indigo made easy 😦  So this summer I will make a fructose indigo vat….because I have many ideas percolating in my head that need indigo.


Shibori Number 2……

……. I can honestly admit that I am not very good at this! Just need to practice and practice.

This tunic was first dyed with Persian Berries….. a delightful yellow! IMG_3769.JPG

Then I folded and clamped it and dropped it into a madder bath. Since I didn’t use a resist, other than the clamp, I was afraid that the madder would seep too far into the folded areas. But no, it didn’t even travel into the fabric as much as I had hoped/planned.  And the handles of the clamps left dark spots here and there (that, or there were undissolved clumps of madder at the bottom of the pot).

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Not so great. I will wear it as is for now…… but when the leaves are finally out and I can do some contact printing, I may play around with it again. OR my mind has been wanting to do some screen printing with natural dyes, so this piece may turn into the guinea pig for that.

I dyed some linen pants and a tee-shirt in the the same madder pot…. to wear along with it ….. but wasn’t thinking ahead, to correctly have them blend with the tunic I should have dyed them with the Persian Berries first, then over dyed them with the madder. But luckily they look nice with another tunic I already had.

Then….. as Josephine’s 1st birthday is coming up…… I made her a Raggedy Josephine doll.


Looks a lot like her cousin’s doll. This one has a dress made out of one of my favorite linen shirts that was getting too raggedy to wear…. but her apron and panties are eco print, as is her body. Her hair is madder dyed wool and her face embroidery is using naturally dyed silk thread.

Playing around with Shibori

I think of this as my Rorschach Clown dress….. didn’t quite turn out as my mind’s eye saw it.

Dyed the linen with madder, then folded the fabric, used old C.D.s  as a resist, and dipped in indigo. I either used too much fabric, or the rubber band ties were too tight, but there are not as many round shapes as I was expecting/hoping for.

It’s a Sonya Phillip’s pattern

,with added internal pockets (somehow external patch pockets seem too juvenile for an old lady….. meaning me).

Dipped a tee-shirt in indigo to wear under it.



Lilly walked me through a more complicated method of getting my photos into a format where they would once again upload….. Thanks Lilly!!

Time to start again

Let’s see if I can remember how!

When I closed my FaceBook account, I promised to start writing my blog again, to keep in touch with my friends…… and to share what I am doing in my ‘creative’ life.

A quick start. Two little organic cotton tee-shirts for my grand-daughters.

My stock of leaves in the refrigerator were all moldy…… my sinuses were not happy! The only leaves that weren’t, were my liquidambar . Luckily, my geranium outside, which hadn’t even been watered in months, still had a quantity of leaves on it (why it wasn’t dead is a leafy miracle!) And of course the guava is evergreen. And I still had maple leaves in the freezer from a couple of years ago.

I dyed with shirts with lac. Then a layer of leaves. Sprinkled with logwood and turmeric and covered with a rust cloth. Steamed for an hour.

I’d forgotten how frustratingly slow the photos upload here 😦 And not only that….. I keep getting an ‘error’ message, and am told to ‘try again’….. sigh. Will post this for now, and try to go back and edit some photos in later.

For Josephine I used geranium and guava leaves. This photo was taken by Lilly and sent to me 😀


And for Eleanor I used maple and liquidambar.

Where does the time go?

I seemed to have disappeared into my self these last several months. No blog posts, not even the thought of it!

Hopefully that will change. I mean it to, but you can never tell what will happen in the future.

I’ve been doing some eco printing. Not always successful, but don’t let the ‘failures’ keep me from trying again.

My most recent experiment came after reading a post on Facebook about using alum acetate followed by calcium carbonate for cellulose fabrics. Had a linen shirt that needed a facelift….. it’s eco prints were fading out. So decided to try this new method on it. I was very happy with the results! Definitely not as messy as my usual technique.

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There is more color than shows up in the photos. Also was intrigued by the guava prints….. have never gotten the rusty orange from them before!

I also made four “West Fork” tee-shirts for the guys in my life…… should have made 5, sorry Corey!….. didn’t realize our time in Portland would overlap by a night. Should’ve made one for you too 😦

West Fork is a side canyon in Oak Creek Canyon…… a beautiful place to hike!  I gathered leaves from a day excursion there and printed some tee-shirts. Oak, walnut, wild rose, blackberry, cranesbill, fern and some other plant that was perhaps meadow rue. The blackberry left no prints, much to my surprise! And neither did the meadow rue.

The shirts are pre-mordanted like crazy. First alum acetate and washing soda, then tannin, then the first combo again…….. then as a final hedge, soy milk. Have to admit, it was worth it! For the first time ever I got great oak leaf and fern prints!

After the eco print simmering, they went in for a quick indigo dip (while still bundled) to simulate the water in the creek.

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Was going to show photos of two of the West Fork shirts…… but it’s taking too long for the photos to upload.

I have errands to run….. my last day off before I leave on my grand adventure! 😀

Two weeks in Portland. Now that might not sound like a grand adventure to many….. but during that time I will be attending a 5 day workshop with Irit!!! I am SO excited!! My eco printing will definitely change after this workshop, for the better I believe.

Am hoping my arm will hold up to it. Remember when I broke my arm/elbow a couple of years ago? Well, a month or so ago I fell on the stairs at work……. and where did I land? You guessed it, my arm! It was not broken again……. although amazingly swollen and bruised. And ever since then it’s been bothering me. Went to the chiropractor two days ago (had gone when it first happened too)….. she put everything back in place (muscles and cartilage were out of place, shoulder was not quite in it’s socket). She knows about the workshop I’m heading to and told me to buy an elbow brace for it…… no heavy lifting, or wringing out fabric with that arm……yeah, right.  But even if it pains me, I will do it all! I’ve been looking forward to this for over 6 months….. won’t let a bit of pain keep me down.

I’ll post photos of the workshop when I get home! Promise!!