Monday, March 30, 2015

555,555 Blog Views

Numbers, you know I love numbers.
At 3:07 on 3/3/2015 I reached this interesting number with six 5’s!
I know, this is my 3rd blog post today but I couldn’t help myself!
I started this blog in September 2008 and had no idea what I was going to do with it.
Now it is my personal diary that I share.

Jessica Sorensen I Gos

Florida Fun With Friends, Family, Fun And Food

Yesterday my friend Sally and some of her family came over. It was the first time she had seen Greg since he was 3 weeks old!
Jared is riding the I Go Robot. Nick and Jessica also enjoyed riding it. I took mostly videos of them so this is the only picture I have to share. I have not figured out how to add a video from my phone to my blog but I’ll keep trying!
It was a lot of fun just watching them all try it and mastering it in minutes.
We also did a lot of eating… no food pictures! We had appetizers, a spaghetti dinner made from Andy’s secret recipe and finished off the party with a birthday  cake for Drew along with ice cream.
It was a great day with friends and family in Florida.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Debbie’s Departure

You are thinking I never shared her arrival!
We were so busy talking, eating and spending time with friends I hardly took any pictures. Sorry.
My friend Debbie Jones spent a month in Florida teaching her fiber art techniques to many different groups. She is one of the most in demand teachers you will find today. What she has to share is something no one else does anything similar too.
She arrived Tuesday evening and we went directly to Eaton’s Beach for dinner. The wait was an hour (actually I think it was really less). We waited downstairs with a glass of wine from the Beach Bar and enjoyed the lake view sitting right next to the sandy beach…spectacular.
Our dinners were wonderful as they always are at Eatons Beach and we actually we able to get a table right outside, although they did have the clear windows closed to protect us from the wind.

Soon after we arrived home we finished the last two slices of the Key Lime pie I had been saving for us. We talked until the wee hours.
Wednesday we were invited to Beth Sherman’s lovely home for lunch. My “separated at birth twin” Carol Gordhamer also was there.
We had a lovely lunch and we chattered non stop and enjoyed seeing all of Beth’s wonderful new Santa’s and dolls.
From there we went up to the Horizon Center where I was giving a presentation on a very simple way to create a tessellation to the Quilters and Needle Artists group.

These are some of the Tessellations Debbie made. I am quite anxious to see what she does with them. I know I’ll be excited to see the results.
We came home and relaxed a while before heading up to our clubhouse for dinner. The weather was perfect for us to enjoy our dinner outside.
Soon after arriving home I got a text from Drew wanting to come over as he “hadn’t had anything to eat for 3 days”!  Of course it probably had only been 3 hours but he and Andy arrived and I fed them and Drew had his butter pecan ice cream.
Andy was too busy naming and pricing Debbie’s quilts she brought in to show me to even have desert! He’s actually getting pretty spot on with prices after having a bit of experience.
After they left Debbi and I again talked for hours. Knowing Debbie had to get on her way early we did turn in before midnight.
It was hard to let her go this morning as we have so much to talk about and share.
Next year we plan on her spending more time here.
Safe travels, Debbie.
I do want to share her website with you. I know you’ll love her work. If you have a guild in Florida that is looking for a really great class/classes get in touch with here quickly before her schedule for March 2016 fills up.
You will find that her classes are really special as is Debbie herself.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

It’s All About Color- My Closet That Is!

I have recently done some reorganizing in my closet.
I did my best to take pictures in the closet which doesn’t have a lot of light. This is one of the sections where we lowered the shelf and hanging bar considerably. It makes it so much easier to reach things. I did eliminate a long hanging space where I kept slacks under this section.
In this section I hang “suits”! Suits to me mean a matching casual jacket or top and a pair of slacks or a skirt.
You can see you I hang everything in color flow order. It makes it so much easier to find what I am looking for and also to put things away.
It also is more pleasing to my eye!
This section is a full length hanging area. Here clothes are arranged more by purpose than color which allows me to see if I have something appropriate to wear for special occasions or just plain relaxing.
Basically I have paired my closet down to only the clothes I wear. To some it may look like I have a lot of clothes. I have clothes here for a variety of seasons. I did not buy all these clothes recently. Some of them are teenagers and some might be even older than that. I have favorite brands and when I buy something from one of those companies they generally stay in my wardrobe for a long long time as I know they work for me.
I have two bags of still great clothes ready for donating. I actually have some empty shelves in the closet…the result of the rearranging of the shelves, the reorganizing of the clothes and the fact I am getting rid of quite a bit. A few special clothes will eventually make their way to eBay.
I find the Elfa closet systems perfect for me as I have rearranged this closet several times to better accommodate my needs as I figure what works best for me.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

The Latest On My Florida Ice Journey


I had an idea in mind when I dyed this but the result was far from what I envisioned.

You would think by now I would be able to create similar works on demand?


There is nothing wrong with the result.

It is just not what I thought would happen.

And that my friends is why I find this so intriguing and why it is holding my interest as I continue to work with it and it works it’s own magic.

Monday, March 23, 2015

A New Twist With Florida Ice


I continue to try new ideas when creating my Florida Ice.

This one used two new ideas.

I learned a lot from doing this one.

I will use what I learned in subsequent work.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

My Sewing Cart Is Proving It’s Worth

This is an almost straight on side view of the sewing cart. It is a perfect place to keep my cutting matts and rulers handy. It the past they were either in the former studio/office/second guest room closet or on the kitchen counter.
I thought the idea of storing the rulers upright where one might store bottles of wine was genius on my part!
That round white item next to my rulers is a lint roller and it fits perfectly into an aluminum vase I found in a cupboard.
This slightly angled view from the top shows bobbins, my sewing glasses, fabrics that I will be using to finish the quilts I have layered and some projects.
I am using assorted trays I found in the house to keep items contained, yet accessible.
The drawer is the perfect place for scissors, sewing implements, thread and other assorted small items.
This by no means holds all my sewing supplies. It is just meant to have the things I use often or will be using soon close at hand.
Tonight we will have a celebratory dinner for Andy's birthday and he and Drew's picking up the cart, delivering it and unpacking it on Andy's actual birthday.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Florida Ice Variation

This variation is something new in my arsenal of design folds.
It was a hard one to photograph for it doesn’t show as lovely as it really is.
It’s another one that is about 44 inches square.
Not only did I try a different fold idea, but I tried some colors and color combinations I had not used before.
It is like a gift each time I open the package of ice dyed fabric as I never know what to expect.
It is like I have a ghost designer helping me with these serendipitous results.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

How I Came To The Point Of Creating My Ice Dyes

These are 3 of my experiments on the journey to create the BEST. I consider the above so-so but it takes a lot of these to achieve the best.

Thanks you to everyone for all your comments about my most recent piece which I consider the BEST of the best Florida Ice.

This never could have happened without a lifetime of learning involving fabrics and color.
Many have asked how I do this and it is not something I can share.

For one thing, the results are serendipitous.
And the other thing is unless you have lived the same life I have for 75 years you will never achieve these results.

I am no longer teaching, but am pursuing my own art.
To attempt to share this would not be fair to myself, nor to people who would try it and not get the results I do.

When I was doing one on one teaching for a fee I had a student ask if she could come and learn everything I knew about color from me in a one day session as she would have to travel a distance to get to my studio. It would not have been possible as she had not lived my life. I could have taught her about color theory but even if I did that until she did exercises,etc she still would not have learned what I attempted to teach her.

I can only suggest you take as many color and design classes as possible from the very best instructors and do the work from the classes.
Don’t concentrate only on working with dyes, but with paints, fabrics. yarns, food and papers.
Then play with your chosen materials until you get results that please you.

Devote every waking moment to your art as only then will you achieve your potential. You can multitask and think about your art being influenced as you live your daily life and think about what you want to do and how you will start.

You are all welcome to follow me on my BLOG and sign up to the email list on the page which will notify you each time I post to the blog.  In addition to my art I share parts of my life on my blog. There are times when a week or more may go by with no posts as I have nothing to post. The blog address is:

And in closing I am going to share some not so successful things I’ve dyed recently so you don’t thing I get a winner ever time.
The above are some less than lovelies but it takes creating a lot of these to find my direction to make the BEST!
Even the less than lovelies are useful for backs of quilts or they can be cut up and used in piecing. So all is not lost no matter what happens in my work.
I wish you success on your art journey wherever it takes you.

I have decided to stop accepting Facebook friends right now unless I know you. I have topped 1000 friends and as I accept more people it seems it stops me from seeing posts from my nearest and dearest. I may be wrong, but I am going to try this and see how it works. I also post my work on some Face Book textile, dyeing, fiber, and color pages so you may also see it there.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Best Yet Florida Ice

When I rinsed this piece I thought it was not going to be very good.
It is amazing what happens between the final rinse out and the wash out and ironing.
I’m really pleased with this one.
I’d like to say I am so good at this that I can get results like this time and time again.
Not True!
It’s so serendipitous what happens when I do these.
Some factors that come into play COULD be the amount of dye, the placement of the dye, the amount of ice,  the temperature, the amount of soda ash, and the time.
Will I create another that surpasses this one?
I’d love to, but it’s not really my skills that make this happen.
I’m not done yet!
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again “If you want to do ice dyeing get the basic directions from the Dharma website and then play with your fabrics and dyes and hopefully yours will be as good as or even better than these!”

If you would like to know when I post from this blog just put your email in the FOLLOW BY EMAIL box and you will get a notification each time I post.

You can also chose to Join this site but I don't believe that will give you a heads up when I post. If I am wrong would someone please correct me.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Pi Day

When I mentioned I had a  Key Lime pie for Pi day the birthday boy arrived in record time!
He didn't even wait for Drew to get home. Drew had to find someone else to bring him over.
But birthday boy didn't want Drew to feel alone so he had another piece of the pie with Drew. And then Drew didn't want the Blue Bell butter pecan ice cream to feel neglected so he had a generous helping of that.
Sure glad I have help with the food here so nothing goes to waste.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

My Dye Studio

I’m sure you are all anxious to see my wonderful fabric dyeing studio.
Well this is it! AKA known as the garage and workbench.
It took me a while to claim this space and with a folding cutting table and a sink to get water and rinse fabrics it serves me well.
This is the view of the container of fabrics I am currently ice dyeing. They will batch until sometime tomorrow afternoon.
Every batch is a surprise and some are better surprises than others!

Friday, March 13, 2015

My New Sewing Cart

I found a beautiful tea cart on eBay.


I realized it would be a perfect item to use to keep sewing supplies and small projects close at hand.

It could be moved into another room easily.


It has a pull out cutting board that could give me extra space to put things when I am working.

The lower pull out is like a silverware tray and it will be perfect for scissors, sewing implements and the threads I am currently using.


This is where I will be using it. It fits this space perfectly. I have not put things on it yet.

My friends picked it up for me at the Greyhound station this evening and brought it over.

Drew carried the 58 pound box in on his shoulder all alone. He then proceeded to open it for me. It was so well packaged which meant a long time to get it all open and out of the box.

I sure appreciate having friends like Andy and Drew….I didn’t expect them to bring it today as it was Andy’s birthday.

I LOVE vintage Scandinavian furniture and this looks wonderful in the room.

I sure was thinking out of the box when I bought this. It is so versatile I could use if for other uses too.

Andy thinks it would be great at his house in the pool house for parties! Guess he’ll have to start checking out eBay!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Variables In Ice Dyeing

Someone mentioned the colors could have been stronger on the ice dyeing I posted recently had I let them batch longer.

So I did an experiment.


The piece on the left batched 24 hours and the one on the right batched 48 hours. The difference between them is not as it looks like in the pictures.

It was hard to get the dye even on both pieces as I don’t measure.

I think I had the ice too thick on both of them and it was old ice.

The dyes were a little on the old side, although last year they were fine when I tested them.

It was cold both days.

Since the ice covered the pieces so thick and thoroughly it was hard to put the ice on both pieces in a similar arrangement.

Red colors strike faster and give stronger colors and blue/turquoise colors strike slow and work better with warmer temperatures.

So the time might have had some effect, but I still expect better results next time.


I also did these two which were just scrunched. Again similar results but not definitive when it comes to time batched.

I do believe I will get better results when I dye in warmer weather…’s here…and use less and fresher ice.

To me ice dyeing is an adventure and I always love the serendipitous surprises.

Since I am a person who likes strong color I have a hard time including lights and pastels in my palette of fabrics.

These might not be what I had in mind, but they are what I need!

A friend said these recent pieces I posted were reminiscent of Monet.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

More Florida Ice


This was probably the strangest folds I ever did when I ice dyed.

The folds created an interesting design.

It is something I’d never be able to recreate even if I tried.

But….recreating is not my goal.

I love to try many different designs.

This is why when someone asks me to tell them how I did something I can’t as I can’t remember how I did each piece!

So it you are interested in ice dyeing just fold, twist, or do whatever for your own original designs.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Waiting For A Name Quilt!

I finished quilting this one and it is waiting for it’s name.
We had another brainstorming quilt naming session over the weekend.
My unofficial quilt name authority friend suggested “Splendid Shades”.
Other ideas are “Illusions” and “Swirly Twirls”.
Do you have a name for this?
Do you like any of these names?
Your opinion is being solicited!

Saturday, March 7, 2015

We Have Ice In Florida!

We get that ice from our freezer and proceed to dye fabric with it!
This is the first of the 3 pieces I dyed for the last two days.
Day 1 – I started the procedure by putting ice and dye on the fabric.
Day 2 – I rinsed, washed out and ironed the fabric.
The results are always such a surprise, a pleasant surprise.
In the past I’ve done many more pieces at once. This time I only did three which made it easier to finish the process.
The colors are not as vibrant as they have been before. I am guessing it might be because it turned COLD while they were processing.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Another Beautiful Day At The Beach!


Eaton’s Beach that is! 82 degrees today!


A perfect day with my BFF’s Robbie and Nancy! we had a little sharing of what we’ve been up to and then went to our favorite beach for lunch.


The view from our table! Look at that gorgeous sky and the fluffy clouds. What more could anyone ask for?

Robbie took all these pictures and I am just borrowing them from her!

Monday, March 2, 2015

My Lucky Stars


Finished at last! I started this quilt in the late 90’s!

I developed a way to piece 6 pointed stars without having to sew into any corners. I have done several quilts with this technique and this is the last one to be finished.

The stars are done with hand dyed fabric.

The black background was sprayed with a bleach and water mixture and then neutralized to keep the fabric from disintegrating. I used several different black fabrics which gives a lot of variety to the background.


I love the fabric I used on the back of this quilt. II t was a special piece I had been saving for just the right place. I used every single bit of it for the back of this quilt. I always choose pretty backs for my quilts. It doesn’t matter if no one but you sees it. When you use your best things it inspires you to do your best work.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Silk Quilts


When my BFF Lisa mentioned making a quilt from silk I thought this would be a good time to share some of my silk quilts with you.

This Trip Around The World quilt was made with various types of silk. Silk takes colors so beautifully, unlike any other fabric. This is a perfect quilt to hang in a dimly lit area as it just glows.


This fused quilt was built in layers with various different silks. the patterned silk is hand painted.

It is not poor photography, it really is an askew shape.


Crystal Clear is silk that I painted with watered down paints. The edges were appliqued down with visible stitches. That is a lot more hand sewing than I usually use in a quilt.