Reflections on Nature Exhibit

Hi folks,

If you follow any of my social media accounts,* you’ve seen my work on this piece over the last couple of months. Now it is finished and it is hanging in an exhibit with work from some of my fellow Kansas City Fiber Artists. Yay!

Harvest Meditation | Annie Webster | Webster Fiber Arts

This piece is called “Harvest Meditation” and it is one hard piece to photograph. I’ve been trying to color correct the photos I took of it yesterday for a while now and I have given up and am showing you that “good enough” one above. Reds and oranges are always hard for me to capture. I wish I didn’t like using those colors so much.

Anyway…I dyed the yarns for this piece with natural extracts and food scraps that I had been storing in the freezer for a few months. I used spent tea bags, assorted herb scraps, red and yellow onion skins, avocado, turmeric, madder, logwood, and iron. I think my favorite yarn is the green, which comes from the red onion skin (weird, I know). I love pulling green yarn out of a pot of reddish-purple water. It is just so cool.

“Harvest Mediation” is on display at the Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center in Kansas City, along with beautiful pieces from other artists in the Kansas City Fiber Artists group. There is some really cool stuff in our exhibit. Please go check it out!

Gorman Discovery Center
4750 Troost Ave
Kansas City, MO 64110
Monday through Friday, 8 AM – 5 PM
Open until 7 PM on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of the month
Open 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month, 9 AM – 4 PM

Our exhibit runs through December 1, 2018. On that day, there will be a “Meet the Artists” reception with some fiber technique demos. That event runs from 10 AM – 1 PM.

Until next time,
Annie

*And you totally should, because I am much better about posting things to them to than I am to this blog because I don’t have to write as much/give it as much thought. Instagram is my favorite, because it is pictures, but I’m on Facebook and Twitter, too.

Honorably Mentioned

You guys!

I was mentioned! With honor! My Crunchy Granola Baby Blanket received honorable mention in the Home Décor & Afghans category of the annual Crochet Guild of America Design Competition. Yay!

Crunchy Granola Baby Blanket | Webster Fiber Arts

I created this blanket as a way to showcase my plant dyed yarns. In this piece there are fibers I dyed with blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, tea, dandelions, and the leaves of violets.

Crunchy Granola Baby Blanket Detail | Webster Fiber Arts

I chose to crochet hexagons with my yarn because I love them. I toyed with doing some half-hexie shapes to make the edges even, but I liked the ragged edge when I put it together, so it stayed that way. I went with a baby blanket size because that’s the amount of yarn I had (some decisions are easy to make).

Until next time,
Annie

Eco Dyeing with Weeds

Hi folks,

I hope spring is treating you well. I have been busy making things and working in the yard. I ended up with quite a few mosquito bites from my weeding and mulching last week. It is too early in the year for the number of bites I have, but I am now the proud owner of two tubes of anti-itch cream (one for the house and one for my purse), so I should now be able to find relief from the itching where ever I am.

I have also been doing some yarn dyeing, this time using nature to get my colors. While I have been weeding, I have been collecting yard waste, and have come up with some pretty cool yarns:

Eco Dyed Yarns | Webster Fiber Arts

I am so pleased with the way these turned out! I have three skeins of 100% wool yarn there, one worsted weight and two bulky. I broke these into little mini-skeins for my dyeing because I didn’t have huge amounts of dye stuffs. I have looked at several books and websites about natural dyeing, but I referred to the directions at The Spruce while I was working this time around.

Some of my plant matter worked better than others, but I had (and am continuing to have) fun experimenting with flower petals and such. All of these colors are very muted, which is what I was expecting. Since I am usually so drawn to bright, vibrant colors, this is a big change for me, but I really do like these shades.

Grape Hyacinth, Tulip, and Tea Dyed Yarns | Webster Fiber Arts

In the photo above, from front to back, I have grape hyacinth, red tulip petals, and a bag of Luzianne tea. Initially, the tea skein was to be dyed with little violets that I painstakingly plucked from the yard before Mike did his first mowing of the year, but those petals yielded no color in the pot, so I threw in the tea bag and I love it!

Dandelion Dyed Yarns | Webster Fiber Arts

These three skeins are from dandelions. I popped a bunch of these babies out of our flower beds, roots and all. I separated the flowers from the greens for my dyeing. On the left is yarn dyed with the dandelion flowers, and the two skeins on the right are from the greens. I did not drain the plant matter away before I threw my yarn in the pot, which may account for the slight color variations in the yarn. I love the result, but cleaning the little bits of dandelion off the finished yarn was a pain.

Daffodil Dyed Yarns | Webster Fiber Arts

Last, I have this super awesome buttery, lemony yarn that I dyed with spent daffodil heads. This yarn was such a wonderful surprise! I love it so much. The color is so creamy.

I have been plucking dried flower petals and weeds this last week and have a bag of them in the fridge ready for more dyeing. From what I have read, flowers in bloom are probably a better choice than dried up ones, but I can’t bring myself to cut down a flower in its full glory to dye yarn. I’m such a softie.

Until next time,
Annie