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The Market

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The Market dyefeltsool.com

Ecodyed – Art Top

Ecodyed - Art Top

raw silk eco dyed top, one of a kind – red2white

Spring!

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It’s been a long time coming but I think Spring may very well be here.

Not that we can plant anything out of doors until the full moon in June {local wisdom}.

A farmer recently told me “it isn’t spring until the frogs freeze over 3 times”. I’d never heard that way of telling spring, but we’ve had a foot and a half of snow and a good frost last night so sooner than later spring will be here for good.

Side Yard last fall

Lovely trees … lawn – no gardens!

I love our new place but unfortunately the previous owners were not gardeners. Not a speck of garden anywhere! I find that horrifying but I suppose some people like lawns. However I’ve read some interesting articles lately about turfless-ness and the effects of lawns on our fauna.

Populations of all of our migratory song birds are dropping and there is no end in sight. American Goldfinch populations have dropped 6.2% per year during the last 30 years. Swainson’s Thrush populations have dropped 8.4% per year over that same period. These declines are not exceptional, but unfortunately, representative. Similar declines are being experienced by all of our migratory song birds.”

Plant Native

Restoring the Landscape with Native Plants

Native Plants and Wildlife Gardens

{Most of the pages are for the States and don’t really apply for here though. If you know of any local pages please leave a link in the comments}

So seeing as I don’t particularly care much for lawns and noisy mowers {the town won’t let me have a goat mower} I’ve decided to try my hand at Native plants for the garden. This also will contribute to the dye pot in new and interesting ways.

Up here I’m a Canada Zone 2, basically sub arctic, which is not very promising. I’ve been researching plants that will survive up here and hopefully I’ll be able to add some native plants through out the year.

I found Andy’s Northern Ontario Wildflowers, an extensive list of native plants that grow around here. I don’t know how they’ll dye up but I enjoy a good experiment.

Do you have any suggestions for my new dye garden? I’d love to hear what’s worked for you.

“Steal Like An Artist”

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dyefeltsool:

Interesting thought to share …

Originally posted on Dee Mallon and Cloth Company:

beginning

select subject and materials

The book “Steal Like an Artist” is a great and inspiring volume. You can read it in an hour and a half, and should, many times.

Here are a few of artist/author Austin Kleon’s liberating and clarifying concepts:

  1. “Nobody is born with a style or a voice… We learn by copying.”
  2. Copy your heroes.
  3. Copy from more than one source.
  4. “You don’t want to look like your heroes, you want to see like your heroes.”

In that vein, today I celebrate a cloth face put together in preparation for an upcoming children’s quilting workshop that I’ll be teaching at the Boston Center for the Arts.*  This exercise served two purposes. One, it acquainted me with the project on the tactile level – obviously important when teaching. Two, it gave me a chance to express something, so there is less chance I will insert myself…

View original 462 more words

Turning over new leaves

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odds and ends 024

I thought I’d show you some of the differences in our personal care routine now that we’re trying to make it more natural. 

Natural Toothpaste

Natural Toothpaste

I don’t know how true it is that conventional toothpaste actually helps to destroy your teeth with all the nasty chemicals etc.

What I do appreciate about natural toothpaste is that I know what everything is in this toothpaste, it’s cheaper, and my teeth are whiter. I don’t appreciate the saltiness but what can you do :)

The recipe is super simple

50% baking soda to 50% coconut oil

50 drops peppermint essential oil

10 drops clove bud essential oil

I also added some “real salt”. Apparently it has 60+ trace minerals etc that are good for your teeth. And salt is supposed to be good for sloughing off the gunk too.

More info here:

http://www.keeperofthehome.org/2012/04/rethinking-oral-health-care-a-homemade-toothpaste-recipe-for-tooth-remineralization.html

Natural Deodorant

Natural Deodorant

Also super simple to make. Some recipes add arrowroot powder. I never have had any on hand so instead I used corn starch which was suggested for a substitute. This recent batch though I cut out the cornstarch and basically made the toothpaste, 50/50 baking soda to coconut oil and added essential oils to kill the bacteria and provide a nice scent.

The essential oils I used were

Sweet Orange – because it’s cheery

Lavender – for skin soothing and antibacterial

Tea Tree – more antibacterial

Clary Sage – great for the skin and an awesome green scent

Chamomile – also good for your skin and I love the smell

Black Pepper – to ground the scent more than anything

For more information:

http://www.theeverythingsoapblog.com/2012/03/recipe-best-natural-deodorant.html?m=1

http://www.keeperofthehome.org/2011/09/gentle-all-natural-deodorant-stick-recipe.html

Natural 003

Natural Moisturizer

I also really enjoy coconut oil as a moisturizer, so I made up a batch of straight coconut oil with the same essential oils as the deodorant {minus the tea tree}. Slather it on while you’re still wet from the shower and then dry off as you normally do.

Natural Hair Care

And then of course the natural hair care – baking soda cleanser {clear liquid} and herbal rinse {brown liquid} for a conditioner. I also added some honey to the rinse for added conditioning.

From my previous post:

For my hair, all I need is a bottle of

1 tbsp of baking soda {otherwise it’s too drying}

to

2 cups water

I add a couple drops of Peppermint,

Lavender

and Rosemary essential oils.

I pour that onto my scalp and really massage it in.

Let it sit a couple minutes, then rinse.

After that I have, premixed in a bottle,

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

to

2 cups water

with the same essential oils

I pour that through the entirety of my hair and then wash it out immediately, or, I find it weighs my hair down too much.

 I’ve also started using herbal rinses more often then the baking soda.

My hair was super dry before at the ends but now they are manageable, and not frizzy, and I still have that awesome volume at the roots.

My every day I need it Nourishing Rinse

What?

Why?

1 small aloe leaf peeled

  • Makes your scalp feel amazing and can help with itchiness and flaking

  • Makes your hair beautifully shiny, strong and just plain awesome

  • Helps new hair grow

  • Balances hair’s ph levels

  • Great conditioner

1 tsp basil

  • Stimulates follicles

  • Promotes growth

  • Nourishes and adds luster

1 tsp ground flax seeds

  • Great conditioner because of the mucilage

  • May help prevent hair loss

1 tsp ginger

  • Increases scalp circulation

  • Great for thinning hair

1 tsp parsley

  • Super rich in vitamins

  • Makes your hair look and feel awesome

1 tsp rosemary

  • Great for your scalp and thinning hair

1 tsp thyme

  • Ditto above

Add herbs to a bowl and pour 2 cups of boiling water over them.

Let sit over night.

So how do you use it?

It really depends on how much benefit you want.

  1. You can just pour it through your hair in the shower and let it sit while you soap up, shave and do whatever you need to do. Then rinse out at the end. This doesn’t really let it sit in your hair though so it won’t provide the most benefit.

  2. Or you can bring a bowl with you, sit it in the bath tub, pour your concoction in and then sit your whole head in it until you get dizzy :) Ok, not dizzy but for 5 or 10 minutes. This lets it really sink into your hair.

I poured about a cup into the bowl and filled the rest with warm water. Then let my hair soak in it for several minutes. I knotted it on top of my head and had my shower, then rinsed it out at the very end and let it air dry. My hair felt amazing afterwards. No dry frizzy ends like before.

I’m still fighting frizz with the hair. Hopefully the honey will help tame it. My scalp still feels amazing though. I also got a Denman boar bristle brush to help properly brush my hair. Maybe that will help.

I’m loving the whiter teeth with the toothpaste so I’ll put up with the saltiness.

As for the deodorant, so far it has worked. I have no idea how I’ll fair come summer though. We shall see.

Mending by the Artist to Inspire

Posted on

Some art to inspire mending…

mend

“Make Do and Mend”
Screen printed limited edition by Clare Owen

art mending6

“Mending Dress” 1904
at Old Picture of the Day

art mending5

“Mending”
at Dove Grey Reader

art mending4

“Girl Mending” by Edmund Tarbell circa 1910
courtesy of The Athenaeum

art mending2

“Mending” by Daniel Garber
courtesy of The American Gallery

art mending1

“Woman Mending Clothing While Sitting in a Chair”
courtesy of Clip Art Etc

art mending3

“Love is the Thread”
courtesy of NotOnTheHighStreet.com

More Mending

Posted on

A follow up to my previous mending post,

mending8

origin unknown

mending9

origin unknown

mending7

French Mending from Mrs Easton

mending5

Make Do and Mend from Coletterie

mending6

origin unknown

Mending – A forgotten art!

Found some lovely instances of mending – an absolute necessity for the slow wardrobe.

Enjoy :)

by Corinne on exhibition in Mending My Ways

Wolplamuur by Heleen Klopper

Kapital by The Bandanna Almanac

Worth fighting for. Mending is for things worth fighting for, don’t give up without a struggle.

How to Mend Knits at Martha Stewart

Kleidersachen on Tumblr

mending11

Daniel Jasiak on Tumblr

mending10

mending, again. by Shibori Girl

Coffee Dyed

Handmade cotton doilies Cotton doily Doily Coffee Doily Coffee dyed doilies Solar dyed cotton doily using coffee grounds Solar dyed with coffee Coffee dyed cotton doily Coffee dyed cotton Coffee dyed

A little bit of my own boro

I made a hideous dress. One of those no closures but still shapely – or not.

The fabric is a gauzy cotton and so, with boro in mind, I ripped it up to mend it. Here are some pieces.

Stitching with scraps of silk from a cheongsam redo

Stitching to mend the holes

Boro mending on cotton

Stitched pieces

Boro mending on cotton kimono jacket piece

Square placed to be hand sewn onto sleeve for boro kimono jacket

Mending on the inside of the jacket sleeve

Boro Kimono Jacket pattern and sleeve with stitching

Pattern for Kimono style jacket made out of cotton with boro mending

odds and ends 004

stitching up close

Slow Wardrobe Inspiration – Boro

A little slow wardrobe inspiration.

Silk and cotton han juban with some hemp thread stitching from Sri Textilles, New York

Silk and cotton han juban with some hemp thread stitching from Sri Threads, New York

 When most people see a rip or hole in their clothing they immediately discard it, viewing the item as no longer fit to wear.

Hand Stitched Sashiko Farmer's Boro Jacket, handspun and hand-loomed cotton fabrics, early 1900s From Kimonoboy.com

Hand Stitched Sashiko Farmer’s Boro Jacket, handspun and hand-loomed cotton fabrics, early 1900s
From Kimonoboy.com

For the peasants in Japan a couple hundred years ago this was not an option. Clothing was simply too valuable to discard because of a hole.

Rag sellers would travel through rural Japan selling bits and scraps of cotton. The women of farming and fishing families would purchase these scraps and use them to mend their homespun items.

Patch over patch, stitch over stitch, generation passing on to generation.

A sleeping kimono intended for warmth - often lined and stuffed with okuso, the leftovers from the hemp yarn making process. Used like a duvet. From Sri Textiles, New York

A sleeping kimono intended for warmth – often lined and stuffed with okuso, the leftovers from the hemp yarn making process. Used like a duvet.
From Sri Threads, New York

Boro comes from the “mottainai” sensibility, or the idea that the object is too good to waste.

Boro Shimacho

Boro Shimacho - Strips of cloth stitched into an old ledger for boro inspiration.
From Sri Threads

How long will your clothing last?

Antique kimono, boro mending with sashiko stitch

Antique kimono, boro mending with sashiko stitch

For more information and examples of Boro

http://threads.srithreads.com/?s=history+of+boro

http://www.kimonoboy.com/short_history.html

Overload

Too many projects on the brain.

Work room 020

Work room full of items without completion.

box of thread

Sitting here staring at them doesn’t make them move along.

dress with stitches, eco dyed cotton napkin

So many grey days in a row.

so this is Paris, the bag of many pieces

Someone said it’s spring.

I have a 12 foot snow pile in my front yard and my garden’s under 4 feet.

I don’t believe them.

eco dyed silk

Must stop looking and start working. 

Stitches and Hair

Posted on

Some Stitches

Stitches on Cotton

Sorry, these pictures were taken at night so they are not the greatest. 

Stitches on Cotton Stitched

And for any of you that were interested in the Shampoo Free post – I’m still at it.

It’s been about a month now and my scalp feels fantastic. I had to fiddle with it to make it work for my hair. Some suggestions really didn’t work at all. I also had to do some more research because I found my ends really dry and I would get weird buildup at my neckline.

For my hair, all I need is a bottle of

1 tbsp of baking soda {otherwise it’s too drying}

to

2 cups water

I add a couple drops of Peppermint,

Lavender

and Rosemary essential oils.

I pour that onto my scalp and really massage it in.

Let it sit a couple minutes, then rinse.

After that I have, premixed in a bottle,

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

to

2 cups water

with the same essential oils

I pour that through the entirety of my hair and then wash it out immediately, or, I find it weighs my hair down too much.

I was using the baking soda once or twice a week but I got a weird build up at the base of my head around my neckline. My hair felt kind of sticky or waxy. I think this is because the baking soda, for whatever reason, was just staying there once I poured it through at my scalp, even though I really rinsed my hair.

Too much baking soda = not cool!

So I’ve started using herbal rinses more often then the baking soda.

My hair was super dry before at the ends but now they are manageable, and not frizzy, and I still have that awesome volume at the roots.

My every day I need it Nourishing Rinse

What?

Why?

1 small aloe leaf peeled

  • Makes your scalp feel amazing and can help with itchiness and flaking

  • Makes your hair beautifully shiny, strong and just plain awesome

  • Helps new hair grow

  • Balances hair’s ph levels

  • Great conditioner

1 tsp basil

  • Stimulates follicles

  • Promotes growth

  • Nourishes and adds luster

1 tsp ground flax seeds

  • Great conditioner because of the mucilage

  • May help prevent hair loss

1 tsp ginger

  • Increases scalp circulation

  • Great for thinning hair

1 tsp parsley

  • Super rich in vitamins

  • Makes your hair look and feel awesome

1 tsp rosemary

  • Great for your scalp and thinning hair

1 tsp thyme

  • Ditto above

Add herbs to a bowl and pour 2 cups of boiling water over them.

Let sit over night.

So how do you use it?

It really depends on how much benefit you want.

  1. You can just pour it through your hair in the shower and let it sit while you soap up, shave and do whatever you need to do. Then rinse out at the end. This doesn’t really let it sit in your hair though so it won’t provide the most benefit.

  2. Or you can bring a bowl with you, sit it in the bath tub, pour your concoction in and then sit your whole head in it until you get dizzy :) Ok, not dizzy but for 5 or 10 minutes. This lets it really sink into your hair.

I poured about a cup into the bowl and filled the rest with warm water. Then let my hair soak in it for several minutes. I knotted it on top of my head and had my shower, then rinsed it out at the very end and let it air dry. My hair felt amazing afterwards. No dry frizzy ends like before.

So now I’m thinking I’ll baking soda wash every so often but anytime I need a shower I’ll use the rinse instead. Hopefully then no build up or over-dying of my hair. I also found this site, Minimalist Beauty, where she suggests using green or black tea for a cleansing rinse. Haven’t tried it yet but it looks interesting. 

Have you tried anything like this with your hair? I’d love to hear what’s worked for you and what hasn’t?

Stitch Dreams

Posted on

A couple pictures have recently caught my eye and I’m wondering just how brain exploding they would be to turn into some hand stitching.

Echoed Motif by Mobilelectro

Echoed Motif by Mobilelectro

Mind-numbingly difficult, but so very beautiful.

Or this frescoe could be lovely repeated…

tumblr_m2t346xAUe1qb96b3o1_500

Onion Skin

You may remember this picture from awhile ago – part of my Silk Scarves post.

Stitching and Dyeing 017

To see the end result please visit Onion Skin in The Market.

The Market

Hand dyed using wild blueberry juice.

Here is the first addition to The Market, my brand new little shop.

Wild Blueberries and Cream is a gorgeous crepe de chine silk scarf, lovingly dyed and prepared for you.

Spring is Almost Here

I’m hoping at least :)

March 20th technically speaking is the first day of Spring.

Up here we’ll probably still have 3 feet of snow on the ground and it could be -25 again.

However some of you have crocuses and daffodils already.

In thinking happy thoughts, including sunshine and crocuses and rubber boots, I’m opening The Market.

Tune in on the 20th for the first addition.

No-Poo or the Shampoo Free Alternative

Shampoo alternatives recently caught my eye. In researching the idea many people seem to list “no poo” as a mostly a cost solution but I really think that’s the wrong way to look at it. The benefits are what are most important, not the cost.

What you may think of when you hear "shampoo free".

What you may think of when you hear “shampoo free”.

About a year and a half ago I started making my own soap and loved it. I would hate that horribly itchy feeling I got every time I got out of the shower with regular soap. It was as if my skin was so dry it would crack if I stretched it too far. And the scents would give me a headache. That just can’t be healthy.

 Northern Naturals Guest Soaps

My soap is all natural and as environmentally and animal friendly as possible. I chose not to use things like palm oil in it because of the Orangutans in Borneo and elsewhere. I also didn’t use “fragrance oils”. Seriously what does that even mean? Only essential oils went into my bars. And only natural colourants. Be careful of what people call natural in their advertisements – do a bit of research first. If it’s metallic green, I’m sorry there is absolutely no way that’s natural :)

My skin felt incredible and I will never go back to regular soap after this.

But then I started having issues with my scalp. It was super itchy and flaky and had little itchy bumps all over it but felt waxy and nasty at the same time. My hair looked fine but I was a little worried. I realized I had been taking great care of my skin and horrible care of my scalp.

My sister sent me a link to a “no poo” recipe for curly hair that she was interested in. I thought that looked pretty interesting but also slightly weird.

Not “washing” your hair?

So I did some research and, of course, this has been done for as long as humans have been around. Shampoo is really a very new thing compared to what people have used for centuries, if they bathed at all :)

So I thought I would try it. If it made my scalp feel better then that’s pretty sweet.

I am just starting out so here are some links I found for and against the idea just to give you as broad a perspective as possible.

See what you think and let me know in the comments. Is this something you have tried? Are you considering it? Never would consider it? Why?

Against Baking Soda and Vinegar and for Wen: http://www.futurederm.com/2012/06/20/3-reasons-why-baking-soda-and-apple-cider-vinegar-destroy-your-hair-and-what-to-use-instead/

Against Wen:

http://jillipoo.blogspot.ca/2009/01/weird-product-wednesday-wen-hair-care.html

Over a year of “no-poo”:

http://www.keeperofthehome.org/2009/07/no-poo-update.html

2 years of “no-poo”:

http://simplemom.net/the-oh-so-important-hair-update/

Almost 9 years “no-poo” and dyed. This is an amazing resource for more than just “no-poo” recipes. She has recipes for natural hairspray and extensive information:

http://babyslime.livejournal.com/174054.html

Sorta Crunchy Why and How:

http://sortacrunchy.typepad.com/sortacrunchy/2009/05/shampoofree-why-and-how.html

The Amazing Oatmeal!

Posted on

I thought I’d share my new favourite breakfast with you today.

I’m not much of a breakfast person, I’d rather eat lunch around 10:30. But my Mum always told me that I needed to eat my breakfast. She was the one who introduced me to this.

When I was in school we had oatmeal basically every morning. Water and oats, some brown sugar and usually canned peaches on top. Not the most appetizing and by high school I hated it. But it was good for me.

So as soon as I was a grownup and chose my own own breakfast I just stopped eating it. Or ate it sporadically. Not good, I know.

This winter I was cold and starving quite a bit so breakfast became a necessity. Enter the Amazing Oatmeal.

I’m serious, it’s stinking awesome!

Plus I’ve been having some issues with too much milk consumption and this only has a dash while still being incredibly creamy and delicious.

I make mine in the microwave but I’m sure you could do it stovetop.

For 1 serving

 Amazing Oatmeal

1/4 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup + a bit water

Microwave for 1:30 minutes

While that’s in the mic

1 egg

dash of milk

In small bowl beat them well.

When the oat mix is done it should be a little runny, stir well and add the egg mix. Stir well again.

Put back into the mic on half power for another 1:30. I don’t know how to do half power on my microwave so I use Speed Defrost and that seems to work just fine.

While the egg mix is cooking pull out some craisens, brown sugar, ground flax and my Crab Apple Butter-ish.

When the oatmeal is finished cooking pull it out and stir well.

Then add

1 tsp brown sugar

1 tbsp ground flax

a handfull of craisens

a scoop or two of Crab Apple Butter-ish, or Canned Peaches if you want to be traditional :)

 Oatmeal with ground flax and crab apple sploosh

It is delightfully creamy and kind of desertish without having too much milk in it. I love it!

I hope you will too.

Enjoy!

Silk Scarves

Crepe de Chine scarves in the window, utilizing the sun for solar dyeing.

Stitching and Dyeing 009

Stitching and Dyeing 017

Above: Red and yellow onions skins wrapped tightly in the scarf and then stuffed into a Mason jar.

Below: Pomegranate to the right. Cranberry to the left.

Stitching and Dyeing 018 Stitching and Dyeing 010 Stitching and Dyeing 011 Stitching and Dyeing 012 Stitching and Dyeing 013

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