I have a growing stack of test swatches that served the purpose of figuring out some technique but don't rise to the level of saleability.
My favorite notebook are the cheap, readily available Composition Books you can get at any stationers, drug store or supermarket. I keep a stack in a drawer and use a different one for every project or topic I'm working on. I've got quite a pile in use. Bullet Journal, Branding, Dye Journal, Website, Product Records, Computer Notes, 5247 Remodel, 3448 Remodel, Photoshop Tutorials, Illustrator Tutorials are the ones currently in rotation. My preferred method of identification has been scraps of duct tape labeled with a series of letters and symbols. It's not particularly attractive and as I start thinking about the new studio I'd prefer something I actually wouldn't mind seeing every day.
So I grabbed a couple of test swatches and stitched them into book covers. Two problems solved.
I've finished another new pillow dyed in indigo. I'm really happy with the way the linen takes the indigo. More pictures to come. And coming soon, I've collaborated with my local quilt shop to create kits with my indigo fabrics and indigo dyed threads. I'll be getting a newsletter out about them as soon as we get them assembled, photographed and ready for sales. $45 price for the kit!
As I was wandering through Anthropologie I noticed an "instant old" visibly mended garment. A couple of racks away, there was another. And then another. So, the trend has trickled down to mall shops.
As I wrote back on Day 17 of my Stitch a Day Project, I first became enamored with the art of mending when I saw Neil Young's jeans back in the '70s. At the time I knew nothing about Japanese boro mending, but once I saw it I was immediately hooked. The bag below, available on Etsy sums up just about everything I love - a mix of fabric types, some sashiko stitching and patching on top of patching.
And now, it's modern to mend. Tom of Holland has created a business of it, offering bespoke mending services and classes and workshops, mostly in Europe. He's even come up with a new name for the process, visible mending. His website and facebook pages are filled with great images and info. Take some time and visit.
I was working on some new pillows and used scraps of dyed cotton that I stitched onto indigo linen as a decorative embellishment. In the case of the pillow below it was done to hide some odd spots that popped up after I'd dyed the linen. I didn't want to waste the linen, so I did a bit of artful mending.
Although it's a new piece it has the appearance of wear and fading as a result of the indigo process. To my mind it really captured the feeling of an old Japanese boro piece, but it looks great in a modern room.
I was so happy with the way the pillow turned out that I was inspired to put a patch on an old favorite sweater I'd managed to wipe out with a large grease stain right in the middle of the front.
The sweater was a drab brown color, so I tossed it in the indigo vat for a could dips to give it blue overtones. Then I grabbed a little scrap of shibori dyed cotton and stitched it on using a simple running stitch. On my pillows I've been leaving some of the patches unstitched, but after a few washes I'll need to add some more stitches to this one to keep the edges from curling.
I often like the backside of my work as much as the front
A very linear area today.
Adding more stitches every day, though I haven'e been doing a very good job of documenting my progress. Catch up day today.