Threads of Thought

Janet’s musings on dyes, fabrics and a life of quilting.

Tradition with a Twist!

Tradition with a Twist!

                Quilter’s Newsletter has it’s newest special issue out now and my quilt, Lady in Red, is one of the patterns it contains. As always, the editors at QN have created a wonderful magazine, full of beautiful quilt designs. This is my quilt –         […]

Best Christmas Quilts

Best Christmas Quilts

My quilt in Best Christmas Quilts from Quilter’s Newsletter I’m very happy to announce that my quilt, High in the Heavens, was chosen to be in the 2014 Best Christmas Quilts. The block is a Hunter’s Star and the diamond shapes are repeated in the pieced border. It requires a little skill to piece, but […]

Four by Nine scrap quilt

Scrap quilts in Quilter’s Newsletter

I’m very happy to report that I have TWO quilts in the upcoming issue of Quilter’s Newsletter’s Best Scrap Quilts 2014  which will be on the newsstands soon! The first quilt, Four by Nine, is the result of a Four-Patch exchange with staff when I was working as an editor for QN.  I set the […]

Fat quarters or half yards available.

QN blog tour and New Gradations

The DyeSmithy has been busy making gradations! Once I get started, it’s hard to quit. One gorgeous color after another, most in six-steps. Sometimes it is five. There are many on this site, under the heading of fabric packs and gradations. But here are just a few of the newer ones. First is a wonderful […]

Crazy patch bears quilt

A new baby as inspiration

November 23, 2013 Right now I have a large fabric inventory, so I don’t need to be dyeing. I completed the scrap quilt that will be published in the upcoming special issue of Quilter’s Newsletter called Best Scrap Quilts. It’s gone to their offices to be photographed and patterned. So, I was at loose ends […]

More Color Mixing with Carol Soderlund

October 21, 2013 As a follow up to my previous post, this post is about what we did in class after the dyeing, washout, ironing, cutting and labeling of the fabrics for the book. Carol mixed up a whole new batch of dyes.                         […]

The Sunshine Team

Color Mixing with Carol Soderlund

October 20, 2013 All last week I was in a dyeing class with Carol Soderlund. It was a class about mixing color with accuracy and we dyed 1028 colors. These were done in three color “families” each of which was composed of different primaries. Carol’s organization of this feat was brilliant. Before class, I couldn’t […]

Hiking at Meyer's Ranch Open Space Park

Fires and Floods, Oh My!

October 9, 2013 I haven’t written a blog post for quite a while. It’s been a long summer. Early in the season we had such a drought and the forrest fires were so frightening. So many homes lost in Colorado in several different conflagrations. We even had a fire in our little valley. If you’ve […]

Quilt-A-Fair in Colorado canceled

Colorado has been so hard hit by the flooding over the past few days. The people lost, the homes destroyed and the towns devastated. I don’t think anyone has been left untouched in some way. My husband’s office in Boulder has been closed since last Thursday as water was seeping in. So many friends are […]

Gradations Make the Quilt

Gradations Make the Quilt

Rosie Glow and Peachy Keen Quilts As I’ve said before, I often hear quilters question how they can use hand dyed fabrics. People are particularly drawn to gradations of color, but need inspiration for how to use them. I thought this would be a fun challenge to set for myself. The result was two quilts, […]

Latest Christmas Quilt

My Christmas Quilt Comes Home Following in the tone of my Springtime quilt, I made another Christmas quilt using mostly itajime shibori hand dyes. I love the patterning it gives to the over all quilt. It is being published in Quilter’s Newsletter’s Best Christmas Quilt 2013 and has just been returned to me. This photo was […]

Using Hand Dyed Cotton Fabrics

Using Hand Dyed Cotton Fabrics

April 28, 2012 I’ve been dyeing cotton fabric for more than twenty years, and at some point I had to find a way to use it. The familiar refrain in my retail booths is, “It’s too beautiful to cut up.” Or, “I don’t know how I would use it”. Well, it’s easy, you use it […]

Browns gone wrong

Browns gone wrong

April 24, 2013 Over the weekend I tried to dye fabric brown. I had a recipe for a brown that I had seen and liked, so I mixed some up. It was a combination of turquoise, fushia and yellow. The dye bath look very green, and the fabric in the dye bath look green. The […]

Last Blast of Winter Snow(dyes)

Last week we had a substantial snow here at the DyeSmithy. So what does one do? Why, snowdye of course. I thought I could use a few more mandalas in the inventory, so here are a few of what I made.                             […]

It doesn't always work well

It doesn’t always work well

I have had booths a nearby quilt shows for years, but this year, the first week of May, I am at a booth at the Denver National Quilt Festival. It is my first large show, and I want to have plenty of fabric for all those quilters who attend. Springtime in Colorado is always crazy […]

Snow-dyed Mandalas

So, I snow dyed five yards of bleached muslin that I had folded in a way that I hoped would create a crystal-like pattern. I mixed up several dyes: yellow, red, blue and purple. I wasn’t sure how much of the dye concentrate to use, so I put quite a bit in. I was hoping […]

My Fat Quarter Quilt Comes Home

My Fat Quarter Quilt Comes Home

November 18, 2012 The often asked question is: “The hand dyes are beautiful, but how can I cut them up?” Another issue is that hand dyes so often are solids or read as solids. People don’t necessarily think of them as patterned. I wanted to try dyeing, cutting up and piecing patterned hand dyes into […]

Bee Retreat at Estes Park

Bee Retreat at Estes Park

November 13, 2012 I have been fortunate to belong to the “Over the Edge Quilters” bee since early 1989. Most of us have been in the group for many years, and the friendships we’ve formed are very special. Once a year we go on a retreat into the Colorado Mountains, and for several years that […]

original "ugly" fabric

Internet fiber challenges

October 30, 2012 In the last few weeks I’ve been involved in two internet fabric-related challenges. The first comes from the MX Dyers list. It is an ugly fabric challenge. List organizer Barbara has thousands of yards of fabric that she has dyed. Much of it she considers “ugly”. So, she offers to send a […]