Sea Green and Sapphire

A blog about a love of colour, addiction to fabrics and joy of crafting…

WIP Hunt

16 Comments

The pace of crafting has slowed down somewhat over here. My ME/CFS has gone downhill in recent months so my energy levels are pretty low now and I can only manage a limited amount of things on any given day.  Also, as it is such a busy time of the year in the garden, whatever energy I do have has been spent there. But I am nevertheless managing to do a bit of knitting in the evenings and some slow progress is being made on various other fronts.

But rather than wait for some finished and complete work to show you, today I thought I’d go on a hunt with my camera looking for some evidence of whatever Works-In-Progress there are. Here’s what I found during my hunt.

Knitting WIP Linen T-shirt (1024x683)

On the living room sofa I found a knitting WIP, a V-necked raglan sleeved T-shirt from undyed linen yarn. I started this last summer, but it has recently come our of its winter hibernation.

Knitting WIP Peasy (1024x683)

On the kitchen counter I found my Peasy cardigan that is nearly there, only one sleeve and the button panels to go. Why it’s in the kitchen I have no idea…

My sewing room (1024x683)

And this is my little sewing room in the attic. As I have never had my own craft room before, this is a great luxury even if the room is so small you can only stand up right in the middle and there’s no room for tall shelves for storage so it is constantly completely stuffed with things. Lets have a closer look at what we can find here…

This is where I am currently making lots and lots of small skeins for the summer dyeing season.

This is where I am currently making lots and lots of small skeins for the summer dyeing season.

Some of the skeins I have already can be found on the arm chair. The poster by David Hockney also counts as a WIP as it is waiting to be laminated  so that I can hang it on the wall of my dyeing area in the outbuilding

Some of the skeins I have already made can be found on the arm chair. Most of these are fine silk yarn for my embroidery thread collection (yes I do need another stash, in addition to all the other ones I already have). The poster by David Hockney also counts as a WIP as it is waiting to be laminated so that I can hang it on the wall of my dyeing area in the outbuilding

This is my current carding/spinning WIP. I have been blending Shetland wool in various shades of grey, the next step is to blend it with some angora wool. Eventually, hopefully by next winter, it will be turned into a beanie and gloves for hubby.

This is my current carding/spinning WIP. I have been blending Shetland wool in various shades of grey, the next step is to blend it with some angora wool. Eventually, hopefully by next winter, it will be turned into a beanie and gloves for hubby.

A few other random things can be found here, for example the results of my silk "paper" making experiment (although I don't know if it counts as paper given the number of wholes in it, but I still like the texture).

A few other random things can be found here, for example the results of my silk “paper” making experiment (although I don’t know if it counts as paper given the number of holes in it, but I still like the texture).

stitch experiments (1024x683)

And here I have been practising different kinds of embroidery stitches in different kinds of yarns. I started making them very even and neat, but soon I felt I had to abandon such neatness and start playing around, varying the width and length and the overall shape.

Moving on to the garden, here's my new pride and joy, a brand new border for my dyeing plants. As I need to be able to walk around there to gather the plants, I've put some pavings slabs in the middle as stepping stones.

Moving on to the garden, here’s my new pride and joy, a brand new border for my dyeing plants. As I need to be able to walk around there to gather the plants, I’ve put some pavings slabs in the middle as stepping stones.

My black hollyhock that I grew last year is already growing there, being a biennial it should flower this year. I am so looking forward to seeing what kinds of colours I will be able to get from it.

My black hollyhock plants that I grew last year are already growing in the new border, being biennial they should flower this year. I am so looking forward to seeing what kinds of colours I will be able to get from it.

Some of my dye plant seedlings, such as these Black-eyed Susan and Purple Loosestrife seedlings here, are still only germinating now, so they may not be ready to be harvested this year.

Some of my dye plant seedlings, such as these Black-eyed Susan and Purple Loosestrife seedlings here, are still only germinating now, so they may not be ready to be harvested this year. Judging by the amount of moss on the tray, I may need to fine tune the watering regime…

But my Japanese indigo is doing well, even if only less than half of the seeds germinated and the seedlings didn't get quite enough light on the windowsill back in March when we had very little sunshine. But they are in the greenhouse propagator now, so they have been growing sturdier.

But my Japanese indigo is doing well, even if only less than half of the seeds germinated and initially the seedlings were very thin and leggy as they didn’t get quite enough light on the windowsill back in March when we had very little sunshine. But they are in the greenhouse propagator now, so they have been growing sturdier.

The tagetes however are growing strongly, so they should definitely produce enough dyeing material later on in the summer.

The tagetes however are growing strongly, so they should definitely produce enough dyeing material later on in the summer.

And tickseed (coreopsis) is doing well too, they are ready to be transplanted very soon. These came from the seeds I gathered from last year's coreopsis, I am really chuffed they worked out.

And tickseed (coreopsis) is doing well too, they are ready to be transplanted very soon. These came from the seeds I gathered from last year’s coreopsis, so I am really chuffed they worked out. There are lots of other trays of seedlings too, but I am sure you’d be bored to tears if I showed all of them (especially as a worrying number of them do not show any sign of life), so we’ll leave them for now…

Advertisements

Author: Heidi

I love colour wherever I find it, in art, photography, gardens, nature. I also love all kinds of fiber arts; spinning, dyeing, knitting, felting, sewing.

16 thoughts on “WIP Hunt

  1. I have a count of 4! japanese indigo that have sprouted, out of the two bags I bought. I love your plant circle!

    I forgot to ask in my own post which silks you are buying for your plant dyeing, could you throw me a link or product number if it’s handy?

    • I wonder if you were sold some old Japanese indigo seeds, apparently they don’t last that well? I think I got 11 seedlings out of 20 seeds but a few of them are not growing much, but I am hoping I’ll have perhaps 8 plants in the end, not sure how much colour you get from them. But if nothing else, perhaps I will get more seeds to grow more plants next year!

      Yes indeed the silk was for dyeing. I wanted to try dyeing silk this year, and I thought I might just as well build up an embroidery thread stash while I am it, as it is a perfect way to use small skeins in a multitude of colours. Not that I do that much embroidery, but it’s yet another thing I’d like to do a bit more of, as it fits in with the making textile pictures theme. The ones I bought were:

      SS60 Pure Silk (3000m per 100g cone)
      SS30 Pure Silk (1350m per 100g cone)

      • I’ve bought seeds from the same source 2 years ago and they all sprouted, so it’s really a shame. Back then I had too many plants, you only pluck off the individual leaves and the plants just keep making new ones very fast. But 4-5 plants were a little less than I hoped for.

  2. A wonderful, inspiring post! So many beautiful images, lovely ideas! This puts together lots of stray ideas I’ve had in my head but haven’t done anything about….thanks for the charming post in which you put it all together.

  3. Take care and go at your own pace just now. Your seedlings look nice and healthy, you are taking good care of them. I have never done any dye work but with all the sheep around me here in Shetland and the wild flowers you are inspiring me to think about this!

    • Well in Shetland you of course have one of the best traditions for using wool in lots of harmonious colours so I’m sure it would fit very nicely with your fair-isle work. It’s a perfect summer time outdoor activity for colour lovers (assuming you prefer to do your dying outdoors rather than in your kitchen). Do you know which dye plants were traditionally used in your island?

      • Hello Heidi,
        I know some of them to see – especially the mosses that near the autumn will go different shades of yellow/green/burgundy red – I have been told in the past were used for dyeing wool. I think the seaweed also might have been used – but I really don’t know exactly, I would need to find out! The pure bred sheep are in different colours so that has reduced the need to dye I would have thought at some times as they can be white, black, moorit (shade of brown), fawn and many other dialect descriptive words are used for the shades of greys and browns.

  4. Well, Heidi, if this is what you can do when you don’t have much energy I wonder what kind of rocket you are when you do have energy … 🙂 Amazing!

    • When I was writing the post it was nice to notice that, actually, there has been quite a lot of progress, even if it has felt like a struggle at times and I would always love to get more done, see more of my ideas come to life… I admit it’s a form of greediness. I suppose I should stop comparing myself against what I could do under ideal circumstances and just accept what I can do now (after all, not many of us live in those ideal circumstances).

  5. I agree with indiedyer – that’s a lot accomplished for anyone! Just think of the wealth of knowledge and skills represented here in your work!

  6. I love your crafting spaces! They look so cozy and full of possibilities!

    • You are right, a craft room to me represents very much the idea of creative possibilities so I feel really blessed that I finally have a room of my own (the advantage gained by swapping a city life in London to the spaciousness of country living).

  7. Lovely blog post 🙂 Love seeing your room and the garden!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s