Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Let them out!

Does the artist in you rarely come out to play?
What's stopping you from experiencing the joy of self expression?

We are looking at that very topic today in Our Daily Bread on The Welcome Mat.

Do you dream of artistic freedom?
Everyone abides in a prison of their own making.

Why not try exercising your jail busting muscles?
Sign up for our January Journal project centered on the idea of house and home.
Build a beautiful abode for your heart's desire by painting with wool.
Expand what you can do with your mind, heart and hook.
See you there!

Monday, December 29, 2014

January Journal - A Wonderful Way to Spend the Month

There is light shining at the end of the tunnel of winter I promise!

It's almost January Journal time on The Welcome Mat.
This is a wonderful, yearly tradition, we work around a theme and hooking an "entry " each day.
This year our theme's is House and Home. 
How you explore this idea is up to you.
Artists love exploring the idea of house, home and village.

Uptown By Patricia Keeler

You can be highly organized or incredibly chaotic in this work.
It can be simple or complex.
It is for you and up to you alone how it transpires.

You can dream up your fantasy of a house full of wool or one made of it!
You can create a bunting or swag with 31 different little things you wish your home had.
You can build the cottage of your dreams or a new simple house each day.
You can join us right here, it worth joining up to the Mat for.

I help if asked and encourage as much as I can. Great works have been created in our Journal challenge by wool diarists.

"A page of my journal is like a cake of portable soup. A little may be diffused into a considerable portion."
James Boswell

I love this quote because my own journal rugs act very much like this, letting me get in touch with all sorts of amazing untapped creativity that feed me all year long, a rich and thriving wanderland. I wonder what it will do for you?

So many ways we can to go to traverse this month with our heart filled subject, I can't wait to see what you create.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Dyeing Idea Mash Up

We've all made a spot dye....

Or have  pile of them with nothing to do...

Have you ever thought of making a swatch of them?
I have thanks to clever Sue Hamer.

Beautiful fulsome, something else!
You gotta try it!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Beautiful Greens for The Season

It looks like it might be a green Christmas here!
My friends that's better than a blue one!

Here's are some true greens using Majic Carpet Dyes.
Notice the top one looks a little more yellow and the bottom one looks a little bluer.
This is because we are comparing them to each other. 
They are the same value and will blend nicely.
These are great for landscapes.
Formulas have been mixed together with boiling water, poured in a dye bath over a wet 1/8th yd natural wool. Heat was added, then citric acid or vinegar after about 10 minutes or so. Wait until water clears. Rinse well, dry in dryer or hang to dry. 
To increase to a larger amount of wool go here for my handy chart.

2/32 tsp. Moss Green 
1/32 tsp Turquoise 

1/32 tsp. Bottle Green  
1/32 tsp. Brilliant
1/32 tsp. Moss Green 
1/64 tsp. Seal Brown -it was rather heaping.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Choosing Dyes To Mix and a Beautiful Red

Not all sets of colours make good mixers.
Recently to my surprise I've noticed people employing the red blue green system for subtractive colour use. Don't worry about the use of the word subtractive. That just means using pigments like paint or dye, inks.  It is describing how when we put pigment on something it subtracts some colour from our perception while other colour is left.

The red blue green system is about additive colour. This is the system that operates our computer screens and TV and in stage lighting. These three colours create every colour on a screen. Add them all in and they create white.

We all know when we put all our pigments together in the dye pot we are likely to get black.
These two systems additive ( light ) subtractive ( applied piments)  while both about colour and mixing couldn't be more polar. One theory cannot be applied to the others use.

Using additive colour primaries ( red , blue , green) doesn't get you good full colour wheel results to mix them in a subtractive application, like with our dyes.

If you want to be a full colour array mixer start off with the subtractive primaries that have been successfully in use by visual artists for donkey years.
Turquoise ( Cyan), Yellow, Red Violet ( Magenta) and Black.

The cleaner each of these subtractive mixers are, the better separation you'll get between the colours you can create to make a colour wheel or mix in the dye pot.

You can read more about the comparisons right here.

And that said you can get even more beautiful and expansive colourations by employing the addition of orange, violet and green to these 4 basic colours. Most artworks are reprinted using a 7 colour printer because the colours are more accurate to the original creation.

This full colour use is what I like to employ as a dyer and now a mixer of dyes for sale.
More mixing choices means better colour up to a point.
Our 14 Majic Carpet Dye colours are a great system for artistic and beautiful colour mixing.

They are a bargain right now for US customers because our Canadian $ is weak.... it's like getting 20% off!

Here's a beautiful colour to get your in the mood for Christmas.

Hanchett's Vermont Barn

Hanchett’s Vermont Barn
4/32 tsp. Red
2/64 tsp. Moss Green

1/64 tsp. Chocolate Brown

I dyed this sample over 1/4 yd unless otherwise stated in the recipe. 
I immersed the wet wool in a generous dye bath with the dye solution ( formula ) already added. please add 1/32 tsp of citric acid at after the wool has been swimming with the dye solution for 5 minutes. Heat until water is clear.

Please note red is also very difficult to photograph accurately. I’ve done my best but for certain reds the richness, nor the relative cool or blueness  of them does not show through. 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Print This Increasing Chart For Your Dye Journal

I've just made this chart to help you increase the amount of wool you dye with my small sample formulas in Rug Hooking Magazine and The Welcome Mat and The Majic Carpet Club. I'm usually dyeing 1/8th yd. of wool for these endeavours.
Now dye the same colours over 1/4 , 1/2 or 1 yd. pieces easily, I've converted my most popular measures.

Here's my old rug colour Blue and Grey dyed over 1/8th yd of wool using Majic Carpet Dyes
1/256th tsp. Blue
1/512th tsp. Seal Brown
1/512th tsp. Black

This formula was dyed over 1/8th yd of natural wool using a Microwave Dye Bath as follows.
Add 6 cups of boiling water in a microwaveable safe vessel, I use an 8 cup measuring cup because it has a handle that does not heat up. I like to boil my water on the stove, it is a lot faster for me than using the microwave.
Wet wool in synthrapol or jet dry.
Add dyes to boiling water stir very well, add wool to water, stir for 1 minute.
Place in microwave for 2 minutes.
Remove, stir, add acid in the form of vinegar (1tbsp.) or citric acid, ( 1/32 tsp.)
Stir more, place back in the microwave for 1 minute, remove and stir, repeat until water is clear.
 By all means use a conventional dye bath to create this color.

Using the chart below the Blue and Gray Formula for 1 yard of wool would look like this:
1/32 tsp. Blue
1/64 tsp. Seal Brown
1/64 tsp. Black 

Increase 1/8th yd. dye samples to dye a ¼ yd-  multiply by 2
1/16th tsp increased from a 1/8th yd sample to a ¼ yd = 2/16  or 1/8th tsp.
1/32 tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd sample to a 1/4 yd.  = 2/32 or 1/16th tsp.
1/64 tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd sample to a 1/4 yd. =  2/64  or  1/32th tsp.
1/128th tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd. sample to a 1/4 yd. = 2/128th or  1/64 tsp.
1/256th tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd  sample to a 1/4 yd. = 2/256th or 1/128th tsp.
1/512th tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd. sample to a  1/4 yd = 2/512th or 1/256th tsp.
Increase 1/8th yd samples to dye a ½ yd-  multiply by 4
1/16th tsp increased from a 1/8th yd. sample to a ½ yd sample = 4/16th  or ¼ tsp.
1/32 tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd sample to a 1/2 yd.  = 4/32 or 1/8th tsp.
1/64 tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd sample to a 1/2 yd. =  4/64  or  1/16th tsp.
1/128th tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd. sample to a 1/2 yd. = 4/128th or  1/32 tsp.
1/256th tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd  sample) to a 1/2 yd. = 4/256th or 1/64 tsp.
1/512th tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd. sample to a  1/2 yd = 4/512th or 1/128th tsp. 
Increase a 1/8th yd. samples to dye a 1 yd  - multiply by 8
1/16th tsp. increased from a1/8th yd. sample to 1 yd= 8/16th  or ½ tsp.
1/32 tsp increased from a 1/8th yd sample to 1 yd = 8/32 or ¼ tsp.
1/64 tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd sample to 1 yd = 8/64 or 1/8th tsp.
1/128th tsp increased from a 1/8th yd. sample to 1 yd = 8/128th or 1/16th tsp.
1/256th tsp increased from a 1/8th yd sample to 1 yd. =  8/256 or 1/32 tsp.
1/512th tsp. increased from a 1/8th yd. sample to a 1 yd = 8/512th or 1/64th tsp.
Please print this out for your dye journal or reference book.

Monday, December 8, 2014

How to dye by eye - Formula free

You can make a real difference in your hooked rugs by dyeing.
You'll make colours only you can.
It's a special realization when you know you can make any colour you wish.
The world is your oyster then.
Here are some tips:

Each of us has looked at something and wanted to create the color we see in the dye pot. What do we need to really SEE when we look at our inspiration to get going  ?

The color:
What color family does this item belong to ?
This first question lets us know what dye to start with as we start our new formula.

The intensity of the color:
Is the color dull, bright or somewhere  between ?
This reveals what to add to the first color to create the proper intensity.
You might need to add the opposite color, or if you you desire a deadened or very calming color you need to add black. If you want a brighter colour you need to look at colours that surround your colour family of your item. eg Yellow will make red, orange, and green brighter.

Is this color warm or cool ?
The color you seek has a temperature.  You may need to add a warmer compliment or a cooler compliment (opposite colors on the color wheel) to get where you want to go. To explain, if you needed to reduce the intensity of a color but still have it be rich, you use a complimentary color to reduce it.  A purple that is vibrant but needs to be calmed down and warmed at the same time would benefit from the addition of yellow orange rather than yellow, it’s true compliment. If it needed to be reduced and cooled, adding yellow green rather than yellow would aid you.

The value of the color : 
Is the color light, medium or dark valued ?
 This tells us how much dye to use. Of course the amount changes according to how much wool is dyed. If you dyed 1 yd. of wool with 1/32 tsp of dye and you dyed 1/4 yd. with 1/32 tsp of dye  the two values would be quite different.

Here are some colours I matched of beach treasures. I know you can do this too!

Friday, December 5, 2014

What I might have made today but....

 I made all of these two weeks ago and aren't they delicious?
I used the Zero Waste rule and there were no remnants to toss into landfill.

They are all for sale at Wandaworks. These one of a kind garments are hand dyed and sewn by me, I can't tell you how wonderful these all feel, made from the same piece of 100% wool jersey from Italy. They look great on everyone! They are on a size 18 dressmakers dummy and look good right down to size 4. Can you imagine swanning around in one of these joyous beauty this winter? Put it on your wish list!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

What I didn't make today!

I made this a couple of weeks ago and I'm so pleased with it!
Using a wonderful Italian knit wool in a lightweight with a great soft hand, I cut and sewed these gorgeous jackets, they can be worn many ways including upside down. And then I dyed it.
It will be for sale soon, I have two colourways right now, each one I make is wonderfully unique, just like you.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Don't Make A Thing Girl!

Traditionally this is the time I start my "Make a Thing A Day" for the month of December.
This year I don't want to.
It's as plain as that.
Instead I'm getting ready for our International Hooking Day celebration on December 4th and I'm doing my favorite job:

I have this effect on all the men!

I'm also getting my home studio back in shape for my bevy of rug hooking beauties to return. Thank goodness I have my Miss Watson to help me!

We will be posting though in December.... don't you wonder what we will be showing you?
Stay tuned.
Oh... are you looking for dyeing info?
Away you go.... straight to The Majic Carpet Club or look at our boon for this week in The WandaWay Studio