Thursday, September 17, 2015

Center Medallion....Polychrome Indigos

Center for a new medallion quilt. The hex is 1 1/2" with the center portion being DC511N. This is appliqued onto a 43 1/2" X  61 1/2" piece of DC512N. I am currently adding in 1" borders from DC513N...just the gold scroll part. Also building 9" finished Lemoyne Stars for a double row surround!

The icky gold and brass colorations are from my upcoming line...Margo's mignonettes.  I will try to get them up on wish list soon. Delivery expected in October.

We get to see the Broncos tonight...not usually broadcast in Ron is pleased. Will sew while watching.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Polychromes....multi colored

Dargate Polychromes

This outstanding multi-colored indigo from the Dargate book has been beautifully reproduced by Andover Fabrics using modern technology to capture the colors of this c. 1830 fabrics. The entire line, including both red and black color ways plus coordinates, is coming to a quilt shop near you soon. See the full selection at Dargate.
I am currently working on 2 quilts using my early sample yardages. I should have pictures on the next post.

I was, however, curious about the method used in 1830 to produce such fabric. Classic blue/white indigo designs can be printed by resist. This resist method utilizes a resist paste in the area that is to remain white. The yardage is then dyed in an indigo bath, followed by the removal of the resist. Another run through the indigo dye bath would produce a two blue design.


These were the beginning steps to polychrome indigo prints. The original resist paste and indigo dye both produced white and light blue designs on a dark blue background. The old resists were then removed and new areas covered with another paste. The fabric was dyed yellow, giving three additional colors: yellow, green and black. Finally, a pink and red were overprinted. The final product was a dramatic polychrome indigo featuring white, light blue, dark blue, yellow, green, black, red, pink and brown. Wow!


Technical assistance with this history process graciously provided by the Department of Textiles, Fashion Merchandising, and Design, University of Rhode Island: Drs. Bide, Ordonez and Welters.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

California Golds

Chrome yellow is a mineral dye that was used to dye and print cottons from around 1820. An alkaline rinse in the final stages of the process would change the color to chrome orange. (The color could vary from school bus yellow to aged cheddar cheese.)
A fine printed line or a small design could appear almost butterscotch in color. These are often called ‘California Golds’ and were seen from 1840-1890. I remember at least the starting date for these prints...because of the San Francisco '49ers. (We are big football fans. Since we can rarely get a Bronco game here in MN, we are trying to change our colors!)

Dargate Polychromes

The orange/gold dye is also seen in a very dramatic way on a deep indigo blue background through out the 19th century and into the early 1900s.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

A Year

It has been a year now since we relocated to Minnesota. I have a new MN driver's license! new experiences (strawberry picking early early Monday morning) and best of all new friends.

New fabrics with Andover...two lines in production: Dargate Polychromes shipping in August and Margo's mignonettes due in October with another line, as yet un named, in artwork. Plus several scheduled speaking engagements here in MN and one in AR.

I promised my son in law that given a year....I would have all the boxes unpacked. Well...I am close.. everything is unpacked and organized except my sewing room. Now how did that happen?

Best of all I get to see my daughter, son in law and grand children on a regular basis.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Spring Quilt Market

My presentation at School House during Spring Quilt Market in Minneapolis went well. I guess all that fretting before hand paid off.

Picture of Dargate Treasury quilts hanging in the Andover booth. We will have patterns later this month for all.

Sunday, May 10, 2015


I am working on my School House presentation about my new Dargate Treasury fabrics for Quilt Market this week. I should have (during the 30 minutes session) about 8-11 minutes to talk about my inspiration for the fabric designs and show quilts made using Treasury.

I have 17 slides in my that should be about8- 9 minutes...then the quilts.

One of my new patterns I call Symbol.

This fabric design is French c 1830 and it has always reminded me of an Inuckshuk. (Ee nook shuk).

My husband and his best friend from junior high school...always spent their vacations together on  canoe trips. They would drive to the 'end of the road' in various Canadian provinces, hire a float plane to drop them off somewhere further North and then paddle back to civilization! They were usually gone 3-4 weeks.

Up in Nunavik (Northern artic region of Quebec province) the Inuit built these large lifelike stone citadels to direct caribou to hunters awaiting them in ambush. As Ron floated down those rivers, he would see these 'symbols' on the rolling hills above the river.  He brought home this tiny elegant Inuckshuk made by Canadian artist Len Masse using recycled Northern Canadian moose antler.

Inuckshuk 2 1/2" square....a Symbol

Saturday, April 25, 2015

May Day

Then and Now....a new pattern company with my business partner Mary Robbins from Bozeman, MT...will feature both traditional and contemporary quilt patterns using Dargate fabrics. We have started with the Treasury line. Two of my designs (I am very much Then) have made it to the photographer. Here is my first offering...May Day. Patterns will be available thru (retail and wholesale) late May.