In the last month, I have dyed a wide range of yellows, oranges, and pinks, using plants that grow wild in the park at the end of my short little street. This summer I learned about using an afterbath of baking soda dissolved in tap water at a pH of 8 to 9, and it … More Pickled Pink, Pots of Gold
I started August with a very seasonal plant-dyeing agenda: another go at dyeing with dried dahlia blossoms, this time adding calcium carbonate to the water in hopes of approximating the conditions that produced orange for my friends dyeing with dahlia in the UK; dyeing with phragmites, which flower in August; and dyeing with Maryland’s state … More Questions Asked, Questions Answered
Over the last several months, I have accumulated a growing pile of yarn that I dyed my favorite way: using plants that I didn’t pay for. Spring came, spring turned into summer, plants grew, plants died. We had dinner. I went for walks. People gave me their dead plants and trimmings. It was all fodder … More Foraged, Donated, and Saved From the Drain
Ever since I started plant-dyeing a lot, I have thought of travel as more than a chance to see my friends in other places or to sit in a sardine tin of a seat eating airplane food: it has become a chance to see what plants are growing wild in other environments and to collect what my … More The Witches of Warwickshire
My sister Nancy is a jewelry artist. She has mad OCD technical skills and a brilliant eye for color and design, and luckily for me, she’s very generous to her sisters. She sent me a necklace that she made after she saw photos of my January Swatchathon pieces, the ones made from my plant-dyed yarn, … More Swatchathon Postscript
I have a collection of Wollmeise lace yarn that is several times beyond SABLE, a useful acronym in knitting jargon that breaks out to “Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy.” I use this yarn exclusively by choice and necessity, since I have so much that I can’t consider buying other kinds of yarn. I love Wollmeise because of the … More Don’t Just Live– Dye!
As soon as my daughters were old enough to walk a mile or two without needing to be carried or running off on their own, I started taking them on walks through our neighborhood, during which I would stop very frequently to observe and call their attention to the details of the things we encountered. … More Look and Notice
The phrase I have always used to explain why I knit is “to answer a question”, but I’ve had trouble putting the question into words that express what I’m trying to find out. On one level, the questions are simple. Maybe I want to see how a certain set of colors work together, what happens … More Manifesto: The Nature of Nature