Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Flight of Spirit Gathering Grace

April 18 – 25, 2015
Kauai, HI

Join me, Roxanne Evans Stout and Susan Wooldridge for a spirit of Aloha gathering on the Garden Isle of Kauai.

Kauai is the oldest island in the Hawaiian chain and has a rich history, unique from the other Islands of Aloha. Aside from it being the wettest place on earth – with an average annual rainfall of 440 inches (over 36.5 feet) – the 553 square mile island of Kauai is complete with deserts, rainforests, beaches, swamps, and mountains.

The literal meaning of Aloha is “the presence of breath” or “the breath of life”.  It comes from “alo” meaning presence, front and face and  “ha” meaning breath.  Aloha is a way of living and treating each other with love and respect.  It’s deeper meaning starts by teaching ourselves to love our own beings first and afterwards to spread love to others.

Walks will be taken as we gather botanicals to use in dye printing fabric and paper with me.  We'll gather our senses as we take note of our surroundings and make plans for collages and books with Roxanne.  Susan will encourage words and writings to come forth that we'll put down on pages. With grace and island magic we'll put it all together in our own personal books to document our flight of spirit.

The retreat will consist of 8 days and 7 nights on the Westside of Kauai at the Waimea Plantations housed in the Kruse House where all instruction and gatherings will take place.

The retreat will be limited to 14 people.  If you're interested in attending please see my events page for more information events page  or email me at

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Two Days of Solitude

Sunday my husband and I met up with some friends in Monte Rio where they had rented a place.  Had a fabulous brunch at Cape Fear Restaurant and spent the afternoon at Jenner Beach watching whales breach and dolphins swim by.  No cell phones, no camera's, no electronics of any kind.  Peaceful.

We had a lovely dinner out where we were entertained by locals at an open mic evening.

Monday we had a slow morning and then drove over to the Russian river banks and rented canoes to paddle on the clear glassy water.  We spied lots of ducks who swam right up to the canoe, sure that we would feed them but we disappointed them with nothing.  A great blue heron flew down the river and landed on a dead tree stump at the waters edge.  In front of him on another tree stump was a cormorant with his wings spread wide and flapping in a rhythmic motion.  As we glided by the heron kept his eye on us but not moving at all.  The cormorant continued his flapping and I am told he was drying his wings as they do not have oil that sheds the water.

I had not been in a canoe for a very long time and was so happy to get to experience that again.  I'd like to go back and take a much longer journey and feel the sense of time slowing down.

Sorry as I said no pictures only these words and the images in my mind.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Welcome to My Studio "Where Bloggers Create 2014"

I hesitated to participate in Karen Valentines' blog party because when I had the time to take photos I didn't have time to "straighten" up.  I thought about it and realized that this is how I work, how I roll. You may see sewing machines sitting on the floor as I had just come back from teaching and that's where they got put.  You will see steamers on the table and dye stuff on the counters and all sorts of random items that are not "put away".  Sometimes it's even messier than this, this is reality, this is a working studio.

I have been a fiber artist for many years.  I created handwoven clothing for several of those years, dyeing my own yarns and silks for linings.  I hand dye ribbon, lace, vintage fabrics, silks, scarves, clothing, you name it I've probably dyed it.  I use fiber reactive dyes, acid dyes, natural dyes and in recent years I've become enamored with using leaves and flowers to create dye prints on fabric and paper.

I am always on the hunt for vintage laces, doilies, unloved garments to up cycle, and vintage fabrics and linens to incorporate in garments and fabric books.

See my gallery page for samples of my work and see the events page for places I'll be teaching and vending in the USA.

To see other artists who are participating in the blog party you need to click on the button on the right which takes you to Karen's blog then scroll down to the bottom to see all the artists links you can click on.

Without further ado, welcome.

Outside dye tables are set up.

Entering studio dye station on left.

The door directly across from the entry goes into the storage area and then out the back.  This space is   for storage of props for vending and tubs of equipment for teaching.

Entry to the right you see a work table and a view into the main studio area.

sewing stations

Views from other angles.

Entering room addition where the clothing lives.

Bins full of lace and doilies

Back outside and headed to the house

I'm so glad you stopped by and please feel free to leave comments!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Vintage Finds and Rust Dyeing

This last Saturday I attended the Remnants of the Past show in Santa Clara with my friend Wendy.  These are my finds:

I've already soaked the soiled and musty smelling pieces and hung them out to air a few days.  Now they are ready to use in some creation, probably a garment for upcoming Art Unraveled Shopping Extravaganza vendor day.

The last few days I've been experimenting with rust dyeing and love the results I'm getting.

I have the next few days to work on garments, dye ribbon, and prepare kits for teaching as I am going to Oregon on Monday for the week.  Michael is flying me to Klamath Falls where I will stay with Roxanne Evans Stout for a couple of days.  Susan Wooldridge will join us so we can "scheme" about our plans for the Kauai 2015 retreat the three of us will host.  My sister Jan will also join us and then I will go to Medford where she lives and stay a few days before I get picked up on Sunday.

After I'm home there is only a short time left before I take to the road and drive to Phoenix for Art Unraveled.