Thursday, 30 July 2009

Not a barbecue summer

It's official.  The Met Office admits to being over optimistic.
Still grey skies and monsoon rain, with the occasional 
tantalizing peek of sunshine.

Summer workshops for children have started at 
Walford Mill.   I am taking four dyeing sessions - the first
one last week using indigo.  The rain held off thank
goodness.   The children loved it - good old magic
indigo.  Today it's Procion dyes on t-shirts.   I have two
brothers who are moving up to pole wrapping and
stitched resist today.  They are serious dyers!

I was invited to teach Chichester Quilters.  Yesterday
 dawned dull and grey for the workshop. Early start to
drive to Chichester, and the skies lightened,  The
day became more colourful as the delightful students
got stuck into the dye pots.  Samples of stitched 
resists, binding and pole wrapping.  After lunch a
demo on folded techniques.

Towards the end of the day some samples were revealed.
Gorgeous,  I managed to lose, then find, my camera to
take a few shots.  I wish I had taken more.  

A small sample of techniques

Then there was the large sample.
This is going to be a fab scarve.

The swirl proved popular - fast, quick and no stitching. 
This piece was folded into quarters - what a result.

Begone grey skies.   Silk folded in half and 'swirled'.
Plus a beautiful little piece of pole wrapping.

(the white bits are stones holding the cloth down)

Wednesday, 22 July 2009


Colbalt, Ultramarine, Klein, Aegean, Indigo

Feeling Blue

Decorating done; Indian Stitch workshop in the
conservatory on Saturday;  chiropractor on Monday.
The skies are grey, it is cold and very very wet.

Stitching the Blues

Taking it easy after hips, etc put back in place, with
a little catch up on the ironing - do not even talk about
housework, another day.  Sorting out indigo bits from
last year I stitched them together in a somewhat
haphazard (but pleasing!) way and spent the last
couple of days stitching with no preconceived plan.
A slow summer cloth.


Sunday, 12 July 2009

Temporary workstation

Yesterday, Dyeing Day workshop.  Alas, grey and damp, or a
 'soft day' as they say in Scotland.  No indigo vats to go, 
although  there were glorious splashes, unintended or not,
 of colour with Procion dye.  Probably the best way to 
spend a gloomy summer Saturday - with friends, students,
 plus pots of dye.

So, still energized after our Greek sojourn, I awoke bright and 
early ready to dismantle my workroom for some necessary
refreshment, and refurbishment.  Some bits in conservatory, 
the rest covered with dust sheets, in situ.

Pictures removed, holes in walls filled.  Up early tomorrow 
to carry on the good work.  It will be grand when it is done!
Meanwhile, I have my 'new' work area to play in whilst waiting
for the paint to dry.

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Back home

A fond farewell to Naxos and Greece.  Yesterday so hot, 
seeking shade.
A five hour ferry trip to Pireaus, soaking up the sun whilst we can.
A picnic on board, juicy and tasty tomatoes, local cheese, olives,
liberated Greek basil, bread from the local bakery, yum. 

Today, washing and ironing (lots of brownie points).  Good old UK.  
You leave and miss a heat wave.  You return and it's back to
 the grey, with the bonus of the garden, despite said heat 
wave, very green and in desperate need of weeding, grass 
cutting etc.  Temperature difference at least 15c.   
One good reason for tackling the laundry - hot and steamy.


Tuesday, 7 July 2009

A boat trip

As a change from just lazing around we took a day trip
on the Naxos Star, visiting Iraklia (pop.151) and
Koufounisia (pop. 366) - islands of the Small Cyclades.
We were accompanied on our voyage by dolphins.

Golden bays of sand, natural harbours, small white box 
houses, naturally painted white with deep blue windows.
Not many older houses around the bay, although
evidence of what would have been a different life
in the past.

Then there is always the sea.

Fishing boats

and peeps of the clear turquoise waters

 Home tomorrow

Sunday, 5 July 2009


Thick Greek Blue paint curling in the sun

Thin layer of rust brown, overlaying that Greek Blue again

Pink and orange

All colours and textures found on this old boat, slowly
decaying (beautifully).

Thursday, 2 July 2009

lazy days

resting, swimming and sunbathing.  No stitching
involved.  My hands are gradually looking dye free.
Lots of reading.  One book read - The Return by
Victoria Hislop.  Thoroughly recommended.

Today we actually managed some exercise.
We walked a mile along the coast to Agia Anna.
A little harbour, lots of fishing boats, tavernas,
and golden beaches.  The sea is turquoise,
and deep blue, with shades of light olive.
Nice combo - hmm shibori.  

A fine selection of shells - I particularly like the icons.
(but will one fine it's way to the UK? Can I resist?)