Tuesday, January 03, 2012


A mixed bag of blues and blueish from the red cabbage dye pot.  I will try this again at a later date, but I wanted some blues for my prayer flags, and really, I'm pleased to acknowledge that red cabbage does produce blue.

The gauzes took the blue better than the large piece of dupioni, each gauze took the blue a bit differently, and the small strip of dupioni has a much deeper blue than the larger piece.

They were all a lovely light purple at first, but the blue took over as the dye pot cooled after the simmering.  I rinsed, washed with Eucalan, then dried them, and the color lightened to (approximately) the above shades.

The first stitch for TAST is the fly stitch.  I know everyone who is participating in the TAST Challenge was excited to finally begin stitching, and the fly stitch is very versatile--the kind of simple stitch that can be soothing work for the hands while listening to music or watching television or Netflix streaming.  (My current Netflix love is Kingdom with Stephen Fry, and last night I stitched on the first prayer flag while watching the lovable Fry and the eccentric inhabitants of  a small village in Norfolk.)  I started with some simple fly stitches just to get the feel, and then began working some variations, and developing a pattern.

I'm still not certain how many prayer flags will be the result; I simply can't see myself as disciplined enough to make a new flag each week.  That would be 52 prayer flags!  I'll just see how I get along in the first month or so and hope for a pattern to arise.
Uh, oh.  Now there are a bunch of blog posts about pantry re-organization.  I'm always enchanted with the way some people's pantries look so beautiful, so homey, so designed to make you want to live in a house with "that" pantry.

 I haven't even organized the bedroom closet yet, and now I want a gorgeous pantry! Sigh.  "I want" does not, however, mean much.  I only want a gorgeous pantry if someone else would do it.  I definitely do NOT want to do it myself.


  1. Oh! What lovely soft blues! Who would have imagined...from red cabbage! Ok, I just cannot even talk about my pantry... I only bought cereal and soup and some kind of crumpet-y things this afternoon and I had to rearrange to fit them in...sigh...which do I do first, take down the tree and all of xmas or the pantry, which, believe or not was on my January to-do list...it's never going to be fancy, though, just emptier...

  2. Pantry organization? That comes right behind cleaning and jogging.....not gonna happen! Thank goodness for a cleaning hubby and bad knees! :-)

    Love those beautiful blues. If my stash is any indication, blue is my favorite color....have have twice the amount of blue. I'm curious how you managed to get blue from the red, but I have a feeling that red cabbage has both blue and red.

    I'd be so tempted to leave a fabric swatch in the water overnight, just to see what happens. Isn't it interesting how different fabrics take the color differently? And of course, I'm dying to know whether you can get red from the same cabbage.

  3. Good for you! Those blues are incredible! Nothing like the results that I got with red cabbage. I seem to remember getting a purplish color. I'm going to have to try again!

  4. Nice! Makes me think of summer skies. My pantry has been well-stirred over the past week with the GK; thank goodness for doors! Can't wait to see what you did with the prayer flags!

  5. DebbyMc - I'm really pleased with the colors, although I was preparing myself to be sort of pleased with purple.

    I actually did clean my pantry out a couple of weeks ago, but I'll never go the extra mile that some people do. Like you, I need to be able to fit things in and be able to see what I have to avoid duplications. :)

    Mary - You made me laugh with your priorities! I'm with you, Mary!

    You can get purple and pink as well as blue with the cabbage. I added salt to enhance the blue, but you can add vinegar or lemon juice to rev up the pink.

    Valerie - After straining the cabbage out, you can add salt with your fabric to get the bluer tones. Still, I thought I was going to have purple until the very end!

    Judy - I appreciate doors for lots of rooms. Although I love open spaces and cabinets in magazines, I have to be able to remove the chaos from view!

  6. Those blues are incredible! I would love to know more about the dying process. I recently added Kingdom to my Netflix queue but haven't yet watched--thanks for the recommendation ;-)

  7. Sophie - I like India Flint's book Eco Colour and Sasha Duerr's The Handbook of Natural Plant Dyes. Duerr's is especially good for beginners like me.

    I love Stephen Fry and Phyllida Law, who plays his aunt. Hermoine Norris is a bit weird in both appearance and behavior in the first season, but gets much better. Hard for me to see her in a comedy after seeing her in MI5.

  8. Such beautiful blues...like the sky on a soft summer morning.

    Would you show us the fly stitch? I know zip about stitching and couldn't find it on the TAST site.

  9. Jenclair, the blues turned out beautiful!! They remind me of a Carolina blue sky!! Just gorgeous!

  10. Rian -Thanks, Rian! The blues did come out looking soft and summery.

    Here is a link to Sharon's stitch dictionary and the fly stitch.

    Sherri - I could use me some of those North Carolina skies about now!

  11. These blue fabrics are so beautiful, so soft. I would have thought you would get purple with cabbage...

  12. Francoise - Thanks, Francoise! I think you can get shades pink, purple, or blue according to acidity or alkalinity of the water. I added the salt hoping for the blue!

  13. Look at that! Lovely. I had no idea about this.

    Lol about your "things quilters say". You need to keep going on that. "It was on sale" is always good, but of course it applies to most walks of life.

  14. Kay - Oh, yes, "on sale" is a great one. Who among us can resist a sale?


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