Sea Green and Sapphire

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

About Me

I remember my mum teaching me to crochet when I was about 5 years old, and since then I have loved all types of textile crafts; knitting, crochet, sewing, embroidery, weaving – anything with colour and lovely textures. When I was a teenager I made a lot of clothes for myself. And one summer, when I was about 18, I decided to learn how to dye wool with natural dyes, and I loved that too.

Unfortunately by the time I left university and started working, I no longer found the time for crafts. I worked in IT for about 10 years, first in a training and support role, then as a software consultant and finally as a IT business analyst in an investment bank. All of my roles involved either a lot of travel, long hours or both. I just didn’t have the mental space for any arts or crafts. And sadly, over time I almost forgot that there used to be a creative side to me, once.

Then, when I was in my mid 30s, my health collapsed and I became disabled with M.E (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome). Although the last few years have been very tough, from a creativity point of view getting ill was in fact a positive thing. When most of my normal activities suddenly just came to a stop, I found my creativity started waking up again. At first I was too unwell to do anything with my new ideas, but gradually I was able to start doing simple things like knitting and crochet again.

During my illness, I have found that spending time on various creative pursuits (such as photography, writing, crafts) has been really therapeutic. At the moment, I am very slowly improving and so I am gradually able to increase the amount I can do. After several years of being able to do very little, every new project I can complete is a real joy to me. I am really grateful to have the opportunity to re-discover the creative me again.

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27 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Love the blog so far! Keep posting!

  2. Heidi, I’ve really enjoyed reading this and seeing your magnificent photos. Also, lovely to see the embroidery of your dad on the wall. You’d told me about it.
    I’m letting Janet know about it but she’s seldom up to using her computer these days so may not see it. She’s always been very keen on textiles, especially batik.
    In beauty! Carolyn

  3. Hi, I am so glad I found your blog. I look forward to reading more of your posts

  4. Hi Heidi

    I found your blog whilst looking for plants to dye with…. I can resonate so much with your about me page I too have ME and have found nature, plants craft very satisfying in the dark days. I will be keeping up to date with your blogs. I noticed the last comment was in 2011 does this mean you haven’t written in a while?? I have started a business from these small beginnings whilst it is incredibly slow being August I am hoping it will bring in an income but I am so enjoying it and you sound as you are too.I would love you to Check out my website and feel free to pass any constructive advice!! LOL Take care for now keep up the lovely blogs! x Pam x http://www.pottingsheddirect.co.uk

    • Hi Pam, thank you for visiting 🙂 I’m glad to hear you have been able to start your own business, it gives me hope too that one of these days I might be able to do something similar. I do still write this blog, although this year has been a bit slow as I have gone down hill quite a lot, but I do write whenever I feel up to it.

  5. Congratulations on a fascinating blog, I’ve really enjoyed reading about dying naturally and am so happy that you’ve managed to rediscover your creativity despite all the difficulties.

  6. It is quite a seamless pleasure to read your blog, that you found a natural art to translate your personal agony into the benefit of all those love colours,nature…. in a pleasing manner. congratulations.

  7. Hello, Thanks for your reply. Right now I feel very strongly to give you information about this web site. ( http://www.aranyanatural.com ) . I believe you would ‘say it (about this web site) with poetry “Byrdes of on kynde and color flok and flye allwayes together.” ‘

    And a request: Would you mind to name a good starter-book on natural dyeing for me anyway , pal? ………Roy

  8. Thank you for recommending that link. It is a beautiful website and seems a very worthwhile organisation.

    Wild Colour by Jenny Dean is the best and most informative book on natural dyeing that I have come across. It will contain everything you need to know to get started, so I wholeheartedly recommend that one.

  9. Its after a long break….. I hadn’t got time to do away with Jenny Dean book as i am a bit busy on the construction of a small-Eco friendly cottage in a high altitude tourist spot. Whats new brewing there up in your natural dyeing laboratory? Hope you are doing fine. Hmm winter is around and so is the Xmas….Roy

  10. Hello, I hope you are fine ….. may read this – http://www.ittybittyimpact.com

  11. I have got a good amount of berries. Around 1 Kg. Exactly, Duranta erecta berries. Orange colored, rosary bead sized, in pomegranate shape. It gives deep brown stain to clothes. I hope I can use it to colour cotton shirt. Please suggest either salt or Alum-which I should use?And total process in general…. If you dont mind …………..Roy

    • Hi Roy, I’m afraid I have never dyed cotton so I don’t know about that process at all so I don’t really have any advice I could share… I’m sure Mr Google will be much more knowledgeable!

      Heidi

  12. Best wishes – hope you feel better.

  13. I found your blog while looking for images of the colors one can get by using dye from the madder root. I’m visualizing the story of Lydia from the Bible…and I appreciate not only your variations in color, but also the descriptions of how you got each one.
    I do hope your health improves… and/or that you find ways (like this creative outlet?) to live with it… Best wishes.

  14. I love your sweaters… I specially love the t shirt. How would I get the pattern to knit this plus the yarn.

  15. I love all the pictures of your projects! I learned to knit about 12 years ago but have never done more with it than a rare blanket or scarf. I would love to learn to make raglan sweaters and cardigans. Do you have a YouTube channel or any video tutorials? Knit or crochet would be awesome. I learned to crochet about a year and a half ago and while I can do more with it so far than I can with knitting, I want to learn to crochet clothes as well. Would love to see any tutorials from you.

    • I’m afraid I haven’t really gone down the tutorial route, so I haven’t ever done any 😦 – sorry! But I’ve no doubt you’ll find plenty of excellent ones elsewhere…

      If you want to learn to knit raglan sweaters/cardigans, look for top-down patters knitted in the round, they are easy to knit and also relatively easy to adjust to your own size.

  16. Hello – your blog(s) are gorgeous. Would you be willing to share the changes you made to clearwing? I’d love to knit what you did…

    • This is becoming a very frequently asked question 😉 but I’m afraid I never wrote down what I did, so it would be a bit too time-consuming to reverse-engineer exact instructions now (sorry!). But here are the main principles:

      – I left out the lacy bit at the neckline (knitting the equivalent number of plain knit stitches instead)
      – I adjusted the stitch count to the different yarn I was using as well as make it fit my body better. It’s a top down pattern so you don’t really need the decide the exact stitch count in advance anyway, you just keep knitting and trying it on until it’s the right size for your own body (it did take me a few goes, unravelling and re-knitting until the fit was right).
      – The body was knitted slightly A-line to make it more flattering for my body, rather than narrowing it at the waist. So just after the bust area, I narrowed it down a little bit and then increased the stitches very gently towards the bottom.
      – And of course I didn’t knit any sleeves, so the length of the cap sleeve is simply what you get when you knit the upper half of the main body.

      I’m afraid this is as much detail as it is feasible for me to provide! 🙂

  17. Just read your blog and can’t say how gorgeous I thought your dyed yarns are. Very inspired. Wow!

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