Monday, September 22, 2014

Apple Juice Canned & More Wild Mushrooms Found

I was pleased with today's work-I prepared the apples for the juicer, then juiced the apples, and canned up 7 quarts with a glass left over to drink 
     Over 30 years ago we bought a champion juicer-best on the market in my opinion-you can process a glass at a time or bushels at a time-the set up and clean up is so easy-love it-I don't know if these are still made in the USA but if so they are just the best for juicing large amounts. They have an industrial motor.

Hubby just got back with more coral mushrooms-they are gorgeous and plentiful this fall. I said he could gather one more bag and he brought back 2-lol  Also more trumpets (chanterels)-those only show up every 5-7 years here so we grab them when we see em-and these are really a delicacy and can up really nice too. I also like to saute them in butter, cool down and then freeze-they hold up really well in the freezer-taste like fresh when you use them

The trumpets are a little less prep work than the corals but it is already after 3pm now so don't think I am up to another 5 to 6 hour task. Yesterday was a 12 hour day so I better slow it down a bit. lol

Off to finish cleaning up the kitchen and figure out what to do for supper.

Are you ready for the Voice and Sleepy Hollow to return??

Happy First Day of Autumn and Giveaway Results

I will have to say this is the absolute lowest turn out for one of my giveaways-so I guess you all are getting bored with them-lol  This giveaway was to help promote my new Seller's and Artist Blog here on Blogger. 

I thought I would post here in case the winners are not following my other blog.

Since I only had a small handful-3 to sign up I will send you each a little something in the coming week. So if Gene, Barbara of Pineland Treasures, and Carol in Missouri would send me your address again I will get a little something from my shop in the mail to you. Those of you that quilt and sew would prefer one of my hand dyes let me know.

I do still have in the running a free bar of soap for my 25th follower in my seller blog-see link in left sidebar.

I have been busy busy with canning applesauce and wild mushrooms over the weekend. More to can up this week. I will be canning the delicate chanterele or trumpet mushrooms next, a few more coral mushrooms and more apples. So a busy week ahead.

I need to rinse out the rest of my alpaca fibers that were dyed with pokeberry too. I did rinse out the wool fabric piece-and really wierd on that one; after much rinsing-all the pretty dye just washed right out I ended up with a molted brown color. So there must have been something on the fibers that the synthropal soap did not remove. It will work fine for applique though. I washed the handful of alpaca fibers that were beige in color and I lost very little color. So I will show photos once I get the rest all rinsed out and dried. This color is a little different-has a little orange showing through-really love it.

Enjoy your week!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Busy Busy Here-Alpaca Dyed with Pokeberry, Apples Picked, and Wild Coral Mushrooms Too

I finished up the pokeberry dye pot this morning. If interested more about it here

We just got back from picking apples at a neighbors. We picked a bucket full for the deer and Mr L's horse, and we picked 4 buckets full for me to make into applesauce and perhaps a pie-we'll see about the pie lol  I think my bad hand can handle cutting these into quarters better than peeling them. They are perfect since the owner did not spray them but they are pretty nice considering.

Yesterday Mr L brought a huge bag over of the wild coral mushrooms-these are excellent eating fresh, but also excellent canned so I will be doing that this weekend too-I gave about half of them away to our neighbor that gave us the apples, and the guys will be going out later today to hopefully pick more-I need allot to make setting up the canner worth it.

This will be a glorious last weekend of summer too-in the 80s and perhaps just a little rain coming in tonight.

Have an awesome weekend!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Happy Thursday and Sharing Other's Etsy Shops

  Good morning everyone. Much needed rain arrived here yestereday. The day before I finished pulling all the spent tomato plants etc, just need to pull the pole beans, and I still have pretty flowers blooming around the edges near the fence-zinnias, marigolds and nasturums. 
     I had purchased a bag of lime in the spring that didn't get put out so I spread that all over the garden and then started using up the last of the compost-got one side done. So the rain came at a perfect time to soak in the lime for next year's garden.

   I am still working on getting enough pokeberry stems and berries to dye another batch of wool. I have collected 15 ounces now but need double or triple that to make it worth the 2 day process and the long cooking times. I have one large plant in the back food plot that is mostly all green so I go back and check every couple days or so. Mr L also has a plant that is mostly green too.

  Next big project is getting our firewood in-this is getting more difficult as we get older-we just have be more careful, work at a slower pace and I am thinking only 2 hours at a time tops.

   I have done more swapping for my etsy items and other's wonderful handmade items-I will be sharing soon.

   I also wanted to share some of my blog readers Etsy shops, I will be sharing more shops in the future. Go here to read about them and to visit. Also next Monday my giveaway will be drawn-and sadly I only have about 3 people in the draw-so if interested go to above link and then look at August's posts to find the giveaway.

   Enjoy your Thursday.


Sunday, September 14, 2014

I made Herbal Balms Yesterday

 I thought I would share here as well, that I made a couple herbal balms yesterday-mostly from my own herbs

  If interested I just offered them for sale in my seller's blog and also on etsy. These are limited offerings.

  I made violet leaf lip balm-that is the one I made early spring and gave away and everyone loved, cold sore healing balm, and I designed one for me for sore arthritis hands and sore muscles-so decided to make a batch to sell.

And  if you missed it and want to participate I have a giveaway going on here

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Feels Like Autumn Has Arrived Today

  No sunshine, lots of clouds, a little rain, and only in the 60s today-yep feels like fall.

  The two skeins of wool that were dyed with the pokeberry were dry this afternoon so I rinsed them gently in lukewarm water and--- happy dancing with the good results-lost very little of the color depth-just a bit-so I guess I did this right.       Any of you reading this and would want to do this some day or if you have done it and did not get the color to "stick" to the wool-I would highly suggest using the recipe I had posted a link to by Carol Leigh-she has the method figured out-especially needing an acid dye bath and an acid mordant-and I think not rinsing right away at the end of the dyeing-which is usually done for other natural dyes, leaving the yarn in the dye bath over night or til the bath cools down-and then squeezing out the excess liquid and laying out to dry first before rinsing really adds to the color set. 
   So I am very pleased with my first attempt and am ready to do another batch. My friend Mr L has a large clump of pokeberries that he is watching for me to get ripe.

   A friend of hubby's-the one he met and visited with in Pennsylvania sent me a fleece bright orange backpack to dye for him-he wants to tone down the orange. There is no fiber content at all on the bag, so I am really assuming that it is polyester. I have procion dyes on hand that is a chemical dye for cotton, wood, reeds, and it did say possibly polyester-so I decided to give it a go. I had a chocolate brown that I thought would really tone down the color. I went through the whole process-scoured the bag with a special soap, soaked in soda ash, made the dye up and added in non iodized salt. With gloves I smooshed the fabric into  the dye after pouring it on the bag to really saturate it first. This is to set for 24 hours and then rinse and wash again with scour soap. I checked a bit ago and really doesn't look the color is going to absorb into the fabric. It did absorb pretty well into some of my fingers though-apparantly my gloves had holes in them-lol   I will bumbed if it doesn't at least absorb some of the color to tone down the bright orange. I am thinking this may have a flame retardant on it or scotch guard type chemical to keep it from taking the dye.
    Have any of you dyers used the procion dyes on fleece-polyester?

   Update on my silk blouse that I put into the goldenrod bath. 
       At the end of the first dye and when the bath was cool I added in the blouse-next day I loved the color-so when I did the 2nd batch of goldenrod I decided to add the blouse back in-then after washing it in the scour soap-I discovered I had several tears from the seam line around the sleeves-bummer. then I noticed I had a little blotchiness too in a couple spots-definately can not offer this piece for sale. 
     So I decided to try and salvage it enough so I could wear it around the house-the silk just feels good next to my skin-the silk has weight to it and just feels nice wearing it. So I had some yellow varigated thread that I zig zagged around the sleeve seams-managing to try and go over the bad spots. Now I am using some vintage silk thread to hand sew X's around the seams-to help cover up the zig zag a bit and give it a little design. Now I noticed I have a tear on one of the cuffs-I think this shirt didn't handle the final machine washing well-even though I had it on the silk cycle and it did not have a hard spin-so I will be mending that cuff too-I think though that this shirt will end up being a comfy shirt to wear around the house once we have the wood stove heat going, and I will know that I dyed it with the pretty goldenrod

How is your day going??

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

We Have Color With Pokeberry & Updated: A Lovely Brown

More information here on the process (and check posts just before that one as well)

 I dyed two skeins of wool rug yarn

Today I also over dyed 4 skeins of wool that I dyed with goldenrod last year that did not turn out pretty at all-so I over dyed with a pot full of sassafras leaves and twigs, acorns, and tomato vines. More information here

Sunday, September 7, 2014

We Have Yellow

Post about it here

Do you ever get so grossed in your art-and forget or don't have the time to make supper?? LOL  well that's what I did yesterday-it was a long day-mostly waiting on tempertures as to not hurt the wool.  So tonight I made us a very nice supper-

I have skeins of yarn from last year's goldenrod that came out brownish too so have them sitting in a mordant bath. So I am off to look around near the house for some hickory nut hulls, sassafras leaves and stems, and choose a tomato vine to cut up-put all these together and hopefully get a prettier tan-to brown.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Should be the Last of Summer's 90's and High Humidity Today & Photos of Upcoming Dye Project -Updated on Saturday

 Was outdoors early this morning to avoid the extreme heat. I finished up my other raised bed with more compost-and got both beds planted with turnip tops, beets, mini carrots, different lettuce's, spinach, kale, radishes, and several oriental greens. So if the rain comes through later today my seeds are in-yeah-It is probably about 2 weeks late getting these in, but it has been so hot here the last couple of weeks. I can always cover them on the chilly nights.

  I also went out and gathered goldenrod. This time I was really choosy-no leaves, cut off the spent blooms and took flowers at their very peak. I decided to add some of my dried mimosa leaves to the pot.-I am getting set up this morning-have the wool soaking in a scour soap, getting ready to mordant with alum for wool, and was getting ready to set up the dye pot-and decided to re read my notes on mimosa-good thing I did as I am suppose to soak over night. I have this book-excellent book for your natural dye library and here is an excerpt I found online for mimosa   The mordant process is a couple hours so just as well to do the dyeing tomorrow-the yarn can stay in the mordant bath overnight. 

  I just took a couple of photos-the goldenrod flowers, the mimosa leaves soaking (those two will be combined together for yellow dye) and two skeins of wool yarn in the mordant bath. (click to enlarge photos)

  I have been gathering up all my dye pots and supplies, and found a big pot I need-yeah-I also have a huge stainless steel pot that I love to dye in-gives the yarns lots of room-I usually use that outdoors on the fire-but hard to control temps-so I brought it up to the house and will see if I can use it on my wolf-I have a 10 burner wolf commercial stove-so hopefully it will work-may need a step stool to see into the pot though-lol 

  Happy friday everyone

Saturday update on dye project here 

Thursday, September 4, 2014

I Have Poke Berries

  I went out searching our property this morning where I thought I might have a few plants and only was able to harvest a few stems of berries. I am surprised with the birds and wildlife eating them that they aren't all over the place like the wild blackberries are.

  However, our friend Mr L called and said to come over cause he had picked a few wal mart bags full- I was so excited. I was even more excited as we pulled into his driveway there was a huge stand of poke berries. So with one area being ripe I picked a nice bag full, and with Mr L's I have been going through them and cutting off the green berries and the moldy ones. I left them on the stems-too much more work to get the berries off the stems. 
    Going with the link I posted previously from Carol Leigh's recipe I am going to need a couple more wal mart bags full to have enough, to dye the 8 ounces of wool. Mr L thinks with the 90's we are having today and tomorrow- more of the berries should get ripe. We have a huge cool down coming in on Saturday probably with some rain too. So I was hoping to get what I needed before then.

  I also noticed that allot of the goldenrod is ready to harvest-so tomorrow morning early I will be harvesting a bunch of that and get a dye pot of wool ready to go. I need to get some wool into a alum mordant bath.

These berries are really really juicy so I worked outdoors-so hot out there too. I can see now why it is difficult to get a colorfast color on wool with these berries. I had three fingers that turned into a deep magenta color-seeped through  the leather gloves-but with soap and water it washed right off-easily. Unlike the stain from black walnut hulls-now that's a different story-you will have brown fingers for over a week  yep been there done that lol

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

More on Poke Berry for Natural Dyeing

  I thought I would share some links with more information. Like any other subject there are different recipes and different ways to do this.

   I was given a dye book as a gift a few years ago that I really love: Vegetable Dyeing by Alma Lesch 1970 by Watson-Guptill publications usa.  In this book there are several different recipes depending on mordant. She also says to use fresh berries or can dry them for later use. The dried berries according to her recipe gives browns. In her section about general information on dye stuffs she says that berries can be frozen to preserve the dye color when fresh.

   Going online I ran into an article by Carol Leigh who is out of Columbia, Mo and has done allot of natural dyeing. This was very interesting reading and I have copied this off for me.

   More information here   and this one has allot of photos.

 I think after reading several articles that the key is to have enough acid in the water and just regular vinegar was not enough acid to get the bright reds. I searched online for the 56% acetic acid- sounds hard to find and pretty strong too. So I went to my go to place for dye stuffs Dharma Trading and found citric acid powder that they said dyers use in place of the 56 % so I just ordered some. (and I just got an order in from them last week-and thought I was set to go-oh well)

  I welcome more information on recipes and techniques from anyone that has dyed with poke berries and would like to share.

Awake Most of the Night-Early Morning Lots of Booms Out There

  I started to pull up veggie plants, a couple days ago I pulled up all the plants in the two raised beds. Yesterday I decided my back could handle another morning-so I was out in my little garden patch pulling-and pulling lots of plants and weeds-and hauling off to the compost pile.
   I am so bad on myself with these projects because I need to time myself to work at this for only one hour now and then stop-but I never do-I just want to get the job done, and I do enjoy the process as well.
     Sooo last night I paid for it-on the heating pad for my lower back, and taking homeopathic meds too. ugh and I know better so no sympathy for me.

  pokeberries from here

  Early this morning I dug out a couple of natural dye books to remind myself what I need to gather up. So glad I did, as the pokeberries are ripe now, the sassafras leaves and stems need to be collected, and I need to watch the sumac so I can harvest those pretty red tops with berries.
     I also got reminded about chopping up one tomato plant-stems and leaves to get a pretty tan. These are all new plant materials for me to work with. I have lots of wool ready to go into a mordant bath, and I have one or two silk blouses I wanted to do as well. I also have several cotton blouses to dye.
   I already have madder, goldenseal, and bloodroot, onion skins, annotto seeds on hand, as well as indigo. I purchased an indigo that was already partly processed so I can try that out with less time involved. I can also get pretty tans with acorns but I think I will try the tomato and sassafras first. The goldenrod is coming on too-thought I would do some of that and then over dye to get other colors like greens Lots of dyeing I want to do-so will just see how all that goes.

   It is still thundering out there-has been for several hours-but no lightening or rain yet. and the weatherman said a clear very hot today-lol

I need to process one more batch of tomatoes this morning, not sure yet what I want to do with them. I  may just cook them down and freeze these as I have plenty canned already with different recipes. 


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Saori Weaving Findings on Etsy

I made a treasury on Etsy with beautiful items of saori weavings for sale-great inspiration and wow blogger brought it right here to my page- you can click on each photo-and there are more photos in those blank squares-so just click on link to see all

you can view here

Monday, September 1, 2014

Was Able to go Around the Facebook Tech Problem

  I woke up this morning, and one friend had sent me a link on how to like a page as my business page-one of my problems-from this though I discovered that my business page being trapped in this Business Manager program of fb had my shop pretty much useless.  

  Then I remembered I still had my old soap page their getting ready to be deleted cause I had combined my etsy shops into one shop-soooo I just re activated that shop and changed it over to my new shop--So now things seem to be working again. I have my shop that is trapped in the business manager program set as not published-so I will just leave that there and wait for when I come across how to get rid of that.

  I am only blogging about this-to let any of you that may be considering using that facebook program-not to-I talked with a computer tech friend of mine-and he had no clue how to get out of that program, and I ran into a question page-with my same problem of many people that wanted out but couldn't.

With this problem I realized there is no direct connect with a facebook tech person for help-you are on your own-which I think is the case here on blogger too.  If one is not up on computer tech stuff-these problems are really troublesome.

We finally have rain moving into my area-a really good thing. We got a down pour this morning and more rain to come. I did get myself outdoors yesterday and pulled all the veggie plants that were in my two raised beds. They need to be filled back up with more compost and then I want to plant kale, swiss chard, spinach and other fall type greens. Sometimes we have really warmish weather with no freeze til almost the end of October-so worth planting a few salad veggies.

I am thinking for supper tonight to inside grill two beautiful large portobello mushrooms and make them into sandwiches I also have a very large onion-like really large-that I may just go find my gluten free onion rings and make some of those tonight. 

I am off to work on my bear piece-I just fused down one of my own hand dyes for the back with the mistyfuse-and left plenty of material on the edges to bring forward and make into a binding-will see how that works for hand sewing down though, as the front is really stiff-may need to think up another idea for finishing.-Later


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