Monday, October 5, 2009

This is Sooooooo Your Fault!

Okay, listen up, all you organizational stitchy divas out there (and ahem, that especially means YOU, Miss Coni J.!)

I was planning to spend the weekend serenely stitching on a variety of projects, but Noooooo... after reading the blogs of stitchers reorganizing their stitching spaces, I got bit by the reorganizing bug too. Maybe it's this time of year, when the seasons are changing, and that cool nip in the air gets us all restless to cozy up our nests before winter sets in....(Or maybe it's watching the squirrels in the neigboring trees scurrying around burying their stash of nuts in the ground).... whatever it is, I got caught up in the frenzy.

I decided my solid color stash needed a bit of reorganizing:

So I sat on the floor, watching Ken Burns' National Park series, and organized all my colors into color bouquets, so that now my thread drawers look like this:

The next morning, I decided to tackle my variegated pearl cottons so that they too would be organized in color bouquets.... like this:

Okay, before you start jumping up and down and hyperventilating about ALL the threads I have in my stash, let me explain. Every summer for the past 14+ years, I've dyed a bunch of thread - mostly #5 pearl cottons, but I've branched out into #8, #12, and #20 pearl cottons too. I learned how to do it from a fiber guild up in the Gold Country. (They were interested in dying yarns for weaving and knitting -- I was interested in dying threads for stitching.) I started by dyeing multi-colored threads, but at the end of the process there would be dyes left over and I would play around with solid color batches, just to see what fun colors I could create - hence the assorted bunches of solid colors.

My justification for doing all this was: at the time I was going to craft and quilt shows to sell my stitchery patterns, and I wanted to have all the materials to get people hooked on stitching. Well, it worked! But I also got hooked on hand-painting my own threads, and have done it every year, including this year. I don't travel to those kinds of shows any more, but sometimes I take threads to the local guilds when I teach there.

In any event, you can see that I've accumulated A LOT of thread to do A LOT of stitching projects... Oh yeah, and after sitting on the floor for many, many hours of fascinating thread organizing, my back was just a tad sore the next day (ouch) but man, it was worth it! Now my threads are organized by color and I should be able to find what I need. But did I stop there? No. Stay tuned for my next installment of organizational frenzy...

[NOTE TO THOSE OF YOU INTERESTED IN DYEING THREADS: Please visit Yarn Barn of Kansas for their excellent assortment of pearl cottons, Procion dyes, and various books on how to dye yarn.]


LivnLaf said...

Me likey all the pretty colors!!!!

Coni said...

Bwa ha ha ha ha! My evil plot worked! Now the whole stitchy world can delight in your threads! My mouth waters just looking at these pictures!

P.S. Sorry about the sore back.

Anonymous said...

I don't know about #20 perle. I thought the smallest was #16. Please tell.
Carol Toll

Donna said...

You've given me a revelation.

Now what I need to know is when you dye your own #8 and #12, do you usually start with white?

NCPat said...

Wow! Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! Cleaning out makes one feel so good when it is done!!

Susan/CqLily said...

Your threads are beautiful!
What type of thread do you start with to dye? (the perles I mean)...What brand?


lewmew said...

Love all the threads - and now you've given me even more projects to work on - painting thread, organizing it. Do I have to work still?