Friday, July 19, 2019


Whew - thanks for the run on Dirty Threads. I've packed up the orders and will get them to the post office in a while.

This lot here is fresh. I'm struggling to get the range of greens I want for Night Gardener. Working outside in full sun and high humidity has a way of stupefying me. If I put up the umbrella (now dead) or pitch a new tent, I can't get the truth of the colors to my brain, so there's a lot more serendipity than color science. Still not happy, although some interesting things have hatched. These will go into inventory soon.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Time out of time

Wednesday mornings time stops the moment he pats my arm always awakening from the kind of dreams I have when I can go back to sleep after getting up too early.

He has a lot on his mind. A worrier. I hurt my back and alarmed him with some pain noise. He asks if I'm going to die. I really hate burdening him with 'someday'. Small friends distract and soothe.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Fish too.

There are fish in the clouds over the garden.

I'm going down to the dye deck to make more of what I'll need here. Cloth too.

I've a headful of dreams to study, and record. Some incredible music to work to.  Must only guard against the heat/humidity today. Kinda hellish out there.

Sunday, July 14, 2019


Mercury, his head up his ass, doing his thing.
The other day, I threatened my printer with death and dismemberment. After a night's reprieve, it got its act together.

 I'm going to have to dye some more thread.

Back to the Night Gardener

 This has been on the design wall watching me work on other things.
 It holds no overt judgment, but smug up there in its dark patience, knowing I'll be back. That I'm already in thrall to it.

In some places, it's four layers thick including the fleece base. I won't stress my grandma's small embroidery hoops that way. The big, FA Edmunds holds it snug.
Some test stitching went through it all like a hot knife through butter. Or, I'm just a brute.

Saturday, July 13, 2019


All I need now is a good, firm pillow. I got a beaut from IKEA a while back. Feathers. That's what this one needs. Something with some weight.

Less than an hour ago I was drifting in the pool under a blue sky, editing a scene, listening to music. Summer noticed.

and here are the missed moments from earlier in the week. We were kinda busy. I was a bad nana and allowed Charlie to get a bit poached while we were at a friend's pool. He was so entirely freaked out when I split open an aloe leaf and slimed him. I don't know that this will become tan. His skin is like his mother's fair on fair, the whitest little white boy. My bad for his night of mild discomfort.
Thursday night I ventured across town to a bookstore where Chuck Wendig, (a pen monkey, I think he calls himself), was giving a yak about his latest book, "The Wanderers". Aside from the gorgeous cover, I was quietly excited to see a publisher take a chance on a big one, 800+ pages. In time, you'll understand.

I got there a few minutes late to find the place was packed with fans, CW just stepping up to the podium. I couldn't hear him so rather than stand there like a dummy for however long, I bought a copy and scuttled off. Now to soak it up and hope it's a good one.

That's the library's copy of "Where the Crawdads Sing" under it. I found a typo - a wrong word actually - in the first thirty pages. Reading as a writer can be a pain in the ass.

Tuesday, July 09, 2019

In the greenworld

My sprawling suburb calls itself  "the Crepe Myrtle City".  They are everywhere.
 I am going to have to go back  and get a better picture  this red one .  You don't see too many  of this color- astonishingly  rich  and bloody .  White,  lavender, and the ubiquitous  fuchsia are common and sums up  the struggling gang of four in my front yard. Struggling because we pruned them late and badly.

The sampler is almost finished and I'm still thinking about how stitched secret messages will figure in to the next book.

Sunday, July 07, 2019

Saturday, July 06, 2019

Do overs

 While I wait for the sun to come to the stitching chair, a few volunteers take a dip for stronger, overall color.

No clue if this will work.

Friday, July 05, 2019

business as usual

A large bag of scraps from the studio. I sat in the car and made up fat baggies to ship before noon so I could get in the pool with a good conscience. 

I need to find some old damasks. The pickings are getting slim.

Wednesday, July 03, 2019


I spent the afternoon observing the pure joy of a child soaking up the pleasure of being 'of' the water. His phrase.

He willingly shed the floats for a while. No fear in finding his own buoyancy, the power in his arms and legs. True child of my clan.

Another roadside rescue

He won't need much...

Found on the side of Buford Highway at the entrance of the Car Wash From Hell. (It's a fun place but post-wash, the exterior of my car smells distinctly like dogshit soup, per my co-pirate, but I agree with him.)

Anyway, this guy has not seen any real weather, but he's been rolled around on the highway a mile or two. Dingy as if he's lived with smokers, but not smelly.

I'm going to open a few seams, take out those frigging plastic pellets and hope it's not a package of crack. Take out his old fluff and give him a good soak.

Tuesday, July 02, 2019


It's a good thing I'm not a purist. I don't have enough of any one color for this project, so I'll be sneaking back into the inventory.

When I take my first dibs from a dye fest, I only take one of a particular colorway. Next time around, I'm going to be a little more greedy.

Planning on some purple-gold-brown, gray-gold-blue and other threeway sets soon.

Anyone have any suggestions or requests?

ps..I named this image for the cursing I was doing as I came to the end of a thread and had one more letter to do with that color. 

Sunday, June 30, 2019 field of fvcks

Just what I need. A little diversion.

I love the imprecision of the original lettering. You can bet I'm going to do my best to duplicate it.

Dirty thread is perfect for the job even though I'll have to improvise, colorwise.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Revisions flies

This is the orientation the new owner decided on. I like leaving that choice up to the buyer.

And so, I created and affixed my maker's mark, something that I haven't bothered with since the second baby quilt. Somehow, this one called for it.

Right up until this second, I had the horrors that I'd spelled something wrong. Leaving off the date was deliberate.

A little note about the backing cloth.

'99? At the OHCO fabric warehouse, a man driving a bobcat with a snowplow attached was pushing piles of fabric around on the concrete floor. A length of this was trailing from under the pile. I grabbed it up before the tracks could damage it. Five or six yards of sixty-inch jacquard weave of unknown content or provenance. It's grand stuff.

Here I am all patting myself on the back for finishing, but I forgot to find out whether or not she wants a sleeve for hanging. Doh!

Friday, June 28, 2019

Wet work

 I think I do my best work in the pool. Really, what's the worst that could happen? There's cloth and water.

And no shortage of Good Help.

I made this post with my phone and could hardly see what I was doing it was so bright out there. I need one of those little hats with an umbrella attached.

This is the first time that I've used my own Dirty Thread to do text and I'm tickled at how the color transitions worked out for this size text.

Liz works so much smaller than I do.

I split the six-ply in half, then I double the three strands. I guess you'd call this a split chain.

To give lines clear definition, I usually wrap chains with two or three strands of the same thread, but not this time. Don't want to interfere with the shading on the letters.

Thursday, June 27, 2019


I keep looking at it wondering why I can't see the end of it.

Since when have I ever worked that way?

What's making me try?

It's really early.
I know better, so, pins and basting only.

No more nailing stuff down when it's in this cloudy state. It's hard on the cloth and hard on my patience.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Sunday, June 23, 2019

sunday stitch

Caught just enough morning light to confirm that I was happy with what I was working on last night in not-nearly-enough light and didn't have to tear the whole project apart. It happens.

Whenever I use elements that have a finished edge, I like to nail them down with some invisible stitching well inside that edge, once I'm sure of where they need to be. That way, I can tuck things under that edge. I drag these projects around with me like a toddler does a blankie so, at this stage, my stitching is all about construction.

This piece is already feeling not big enough. I have more of the dark linen background, but I need a good sized piece of black polar fleece to built the whole thing on - adding on as design demands.
I stumbled back through the archives to find a few old tricks, ways of making the cloth and the thread see sense, work together in more than just a construction manner. 

I love the little berry on a plate and the line going to and from nowhere but with such purpose.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

The nightside

Getting up at crack of dawn with the ping of a photo message (below) is not a bad way to start the day. I seized it for a change, instead of pretending that the week owed me a Saturday in a mumu.

There was NO half&half for my coffee!  A provisioning mission was necessary, so real clothing was required.

Home with a ton of stuff, (most of which has to be cooked by some fool) by 9ish.

Then, the studio time I promised myself delivered some much-needed serenity.
 I missed the brief window of first light on the stitching chair, so I took up the darkside cloths again. Mostly sturdy linen and some delicate lawn cotton, they needed ironing.

This time, they had something to say. Even before I chose all the players, the title came: "Raised Beds in Hell".  First in the "Night Gardener" series. I'm off to baste for a while.

sunrise at Brisco Airfield by CCL
  Later - just a sketch. this one is going to be hard to get good pictures of, at least with my cell phone.

Friday, June 21, 2019

something flat

 A Solstice cloth, kinda. I'll make some time in the morning light with these. Try to bring some order. Some purpose.

Editing/writing requires thinking in four dimensions including time and my brain is as tired as my body.

A stint of two-dimensional design is in order, like a lemon sorbet. I'm not saying it's any easier, just different.

All those big dark cloths? (and they really are) they're just laying there, defiant. A cold weather project, maybe.
 Right now I want to make some monsters.

Remember this mess?

I brought them to order.


the blessing.

Truth be told, there's a gang of them. Teenagers fighting over me, as I am considered 'territory'. She on Whom We Perch.

I got to spend the midday seining tree crap from the storm out of the pool. Walking in endless circles to round up the bottom crud for netting.  Then marching the perimeter, scrub brush in hand, annihilating cities of algae. Now I need a nap.

But this is how the summer goes. It was pouring. No thunder or lightning. Only the grownups noticed as we huddled under the shelter.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

the elusive Tazmeena Green

Sweetie was not much help in the search for Tazmeena Green.

It's a color to bask in, mostly.

There were a few that were close, but the color of a cat's eye is like an opal. Are you really seeing that? Take two steps in any directions and it changes.

Saturday, June 15, 2019

raw materials

  All the new dirty threads are up and the fat baggie scrap basket has been replenished.

I'd like to just sit down and make something but I'm still waiting on those dark cloths to dry and reveal themselves. Then, there's the day job to contend with. Quietly, tonight, it seems.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

more changlings

These got left outside in the weather. A clutch of two-inch strips of cotton sheeting ripped up ages ago for some forgotten project. I guess I'll have to wait for them to dry before untangling them to see what's what.

Everything else in that attempt at "darker" was pretty much a fail. Do-overs are easy.


Whew - thanks for the run on Dirty Threads . I've packed up the orders and will get them to the post office in a while. This lot he...

Play it again Sam.