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Friday, December 26, 2014

Ballerinas!

This design you see I am naming 'Tutus'. There will be a third ballerina on the far right. This is an enormous rug measuring 60" x 30".  So, what inspired me? A foreign shampoo advertisement I saw of little ballerinas. I admit! I am a bit overwhelmed with the size of this design but I also admit- I am enjoying every bit of it!

For the sashes and slippers, I hand dyed pieces of an ivory colored silk shirt I bought a couple years ago at a thrift store. Both girls have different sari ribbons I used in their hair. My favorite is the one on the left. The sari ribbon on that one has gold in it and it is just so beautiful!

I have been having a difficult time deciding my background but have settled on a very light, LIGHT barely there grey-blue which I will spending some time over the next few days dyeing.


I have been working in my Etsy store at 'spiffing' things up- I have added a couple things you may be interested in. One is my 'Marie, the Rose of France' and the other is my most popular, 'Lamb and Crocks'- both I am offering in different sizes now. Here are links to those two listings!

Marie the Rose of France

Lamb and Crocks

I realize that I never shared a finished picture of my rug 'Mariam', named after my youngest sister. So, I will leave you with a picture of 'Mariam.' Right now she is hanging in my living room where I enjoy looking at her and wondering what she is thinking and how many stories she has to tell. She is lovely!




I wish yo a wonderful Holiday Season! I have had one of my very best!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Snow Days

It feels like January here in Idaho. Snow is not supposed to happen till next month. Just two weeks ago, I was running the air-conditioner! And here we are at 1 degree and more snow than I can describe.

Now what??

 As I was muttering and sputtering two evenings ago- in absolute disbelief- I remembered! That snow thing I wanted to try. I am CONSTANTLY thinking fiber. Somewhere I had read about it and now I could try it. So, remember, I am only two days into this, OK? But, I will share with you what I have been playing with and what I have come up with. This is turning a snow day into a play day, you know?

I am NOT a professional 'snow-dyer' - I am merely a woman who feels 6 again-snow, color, playing, and wonder.

So, start with, of course, soaking your wool. My favorite result that you will see was actually an old skirt. The others are 'dud' colors that I botched up on another dye day.

Wring out your wool and scrunch it up and lay it to one side of your big pan. I used an old turkey roaster. Remember, you will want a pan that is big enough that as the snow melts, you won't risk it running over. You will be adding a 'dye/snow' mixture on top of this so cover your wool over with clean snow!

That old pink skirt being covered with snow.


OK- so I tried this two different ways. I will show you the results of both with the understanding that I am NEW to this and am not claiming to be an expert- LOL!!

I am going to start with my latest first as I think it will be easier. I think. LOL


Above you will see that I am dissolving my dye in just enough boiling water to dissolve all the dye particles. This is a raspberry color, one of my favorites. Stir and dissolve.The idea is, at least to me, is that I want to add snow to this concoction to make it frosty cold so that it does not immediately sink down into my wool. Right? Right. Right? LOL You are probably asking how much dye? I had about 2/3 of a half yard in this batch and I used a heaping and generous tablespoon size scoop of my dye. Same with the lavender color I used. I mixed my dye and snow in a separate little pan- adding snow until it was like a 'frosty.'

Are you getting the idea? I have to say that at this point, I was 'in my element'- giddy with having way too much fun! Now watch....
Pat these colors now onto your snow.


Can you stand this? My hubby thought the 'maple seed' was a nice touch. I kept it in there- you never know..........

For this batch and because I am impatient, I put my roaster in the oven with the lid at 300. I checked it every 10 minutes.I probably had it in there for close to an hour and toward the end, I carefully added a vinegar/water mixture to set it.
The above is my absolute favorite piece.Look at the far right- could that be where the 'maple seed' laid? I don't know, but it's a neat thought. So that is that batch, but below, I want you to see my first.
My artist son loved it, "Cool Mom! Wow, like, you are turning into a hippy! That's like a galaxy!"  LOL



So, what was done differently with this 'galaxy' piece? Unfortunately, I did not take pictures but it's pretty easy. These are the things that were done different.

1) I propped my turkey roaster up on one side so that as the snow melted, it drained away from the wool.

2) I did NOT use my oven.

3) I just let it melt slowly and as it melted, I scooped water out. I DID scoop a bit of the drained and very colorful water and re-pour it here and there - A LITTLE BIT. So, by the time that the snow had all melted, there was not a lot of 'drainage' left but then I un-propped it and let it sit in what was left of that dye water. I carefully added vinegar and put it in the oven to set it. Again, I am an imprecise soul ,so, maybe a half hour - 45 minutes at 300?



I have decided that winter does have it's perks! Again, I am not a pro- not even-but I love fiber and I had more fun with this- if you have any questions at all- please don't hesitate to contact me here on my blog or my e-mail: yvonne@vintageheartprimitives.com


Thursday, October 30, 2014

'Mariam' and Mom

This is 'Mariam.' This design is named after my youngest sister. I do believe that I love this design more than any that I have ever done. I love her sweet face and I love wondering what hers thought are and where her eyes are looking off to.

This is a first for me as I have never hooked a face before. As I am sure you will notice, every girl I have ever hooked is intentionally not showing her face as I have been so very intimidated to even try! Would you believe me if I told you I have had a few happy tears over 'Mariam?' I have! I feel like knowing I can opens up much more of my imagination. . I am very exited about this!

My mother, a pastel artist, sat down with me a couple weeks ago to demonstrate creating a pastel face. She sent me home with the pastel doodle that she explained things on. So, as I hooked this face, I studied what my mom had showed me. When I was finished and hung my rug up to look at what I had done, I got very choked up. There was a lovely young woman hanging on my easel. Her expression- soft, gentle and full of thought. I admit, I love her to pieces!!

My mother's pastel sketch she did to teach me about faces. Thank you, Mom! I will treasure this.


Today I am making kits for beginners and dyeing wool for 'Mariam.'

A beginner kit coming along for a very tiny 'Lamb and Crocks.'



The sky I used in 'Marie, the Rose of France.' I will use this
for 'Mariam' as well. I will call this color 'Overcast Skies.'


The dip-dyed color I used for the Fleur de Lis in
'Marie, the Rose of France' as seen below. Maybe I should just
call this 'Fleur de Lis?' What do you think?



That's what I have been up to! 

Saturday, October 4, 2014

'Marie, the Rose of France"

A little history on how I began to make patterns. For many years, I painted and most always sold everything I made-occasionally keeping a piece.  I did many pieces of furniture for people and attended many juried shows. Then I met hooked rugs. My paint brushes sit and collect dust now. I learned that anything I sold had to be an my own original design and that I could not simply hook someone else's design and sell it- that is my understanding. Hmmmm....so I started making my own designs and putting them on Ebay. I sold them and was asked many times if I sold patterns. "Uh, no, huh...never thought of that. Interesting, "

Some rugs I make take hold of my heart and I have a terribly difficult time parting with. Then I realized that if I sold patterns then I might not have to part with rugs that were a part of ME! So I started making patterns and selling them.

Now, you have to know something about me- I eat, think and breath my projects. There is not a square inch of my house that does not leave evidence of this. So, would it be odd of me to actually get DEPRESSED over my projects? NO! All summer, I had this inner turmoil and couldn't put my finger on it- all I knew was that I was terribly restless and I felt so sad. I even considered throwing in the towel. Then through a series of little 'hints and clues', I came to realize the problem very clearly. I was feeling boxed in. I had started creating patterns and as I did, instead of just cutting loose, I was always thinking of the design as a pattern- size, simplicity, and keeping at least sort of  primitive! LOL

I really began thinking about art as an expression of the heart. I decided to just cut loose and allow myself to work as though there was no pattern at the end. As I started to color plan this and work on one layer of this design after another, I felt happy again. I felt free!

So this rug I call 'Marie, the Rose of France.' 


I
I dyed a long strand of hand spun wool I had to use in her hair for texture and interest- It gives her hair a bit of 'glimmer' doesn't it?


Rose petals falling into border.


The sky! Overcast, cool and breezy. I smell rain. 

"Marie", what are you thinking? Who are you waiting for? Or have you just said fare-well? Is there a tear in your eye or a gentle smile on your face? There is one thing for certain, you are loved! 


Monday, September 8, 2014

Rose's Beehive- $10 Patterns

A couple years ago, I came up with 'Rose's Bee-hive.' It was slightly different than this- different colored flowers and a date on top rather than a heart. Other than that, the same pattern. I really like the colors of this one I just did. I plan on taking this with me to a fiber event that I will be attending in October.

I used to offer my patterns on paper and I have seven paper patterns available - I would be happy to sell them for $10 each. This pattern measures 22" x 15" Please contact me at yvonne@vintageheartprimitives.com if you are interested! :)

Saturday, August 23, 2014

A Catalog and A Corset


My best friend, Louise, is the youngest of a large family-nine children- five of them daughters. I am the oldest of fourteen! So, the two of us compare our lives as oldest and youngest. We laugh at how 'careful' our mothers were with the older ones and how as the years passed and our mothers energies faded away, the younger children's upbringing was so much more....lax. Ha!Ha!

I know Louise's mother- a woman in her eighties, Delores. Recently, Louise shared with me how Delores would talk to her daughters on their wedding days. The wedding dress would lay on the bed and Delores would want to have a talk about being a wife. As Louise told me the story, I could hear Delores sweet, endearing voice in my mind and see her twinkling eyes. It was like I was right there. She would say to the bride-to-be, "A lady is to be pure and gentle always."

This is what this design  represents to me- to me, creating brings out my 'inner-girl'- that girl that once was busy with her crayons ans scissors, coloring sheets and stencils is busy once more with her hook....and this time, lace and buttons. Little girls are, by nature, pure of heart and gentle! that, in my opinion, is what keeps our child like wonder and spirit alive.

I am busy at my computer piecing together a catalog. I want it to be so much more than a catalog- I want it to be something fun and looked at leisurely. This little dress will be found in the catalog along with pictures and instructions on how to make your own- what I mean to say is- the pattern is part of the catalog itself- for you to enjoy from me! Be watching my web-site and Etsy store for it to be available! I think you like it. 


~Yvonne



Sunday, August 3, 2014

Character, Mind and Spirit!

"So her needlework expresses what she is, more clearly than her handwriting does. It expresses everything that makes her an individual unlike any other person- her character, her mind and her spirit, her experience in living. It expresses, too, her country's history and culture, the traditions, the philosophy, the way of living that she takes for granted."
~Rose Wilder Lane

This past weekend my family traveled to Seattle, Washington for my son's wedding. As long as we were that close, we decided to stay a couple days on the Oregon Coast. It was marvelous. The highlight of the trip (for me) was being buried knee high in sand by my three teenage girls as they raced against the racing waves. Soon a wave enveloped me as we laughed so hard and I loved every minute of it as I hoped to be creating a memory for my darling girls someday.

The photo above is of a rug I picked up at a thrift store along the sea. It measures nine feet long and three feet wide- a runner. It is completely handmade- probably punched and it is beautiful and mine for $5! I cannot imagine the hours that were spent on this rug- I imagine years really.
Whatever the case, I appreciate that this beauty was made with the fingers and the heart of a lovely lady and expresses who she is or was 'more than even her handwriting' as Rose Wilder Lane wrote.
I also want to share a picture that came through my Facebook feed this week. It is my 'Joseph' design being hooked by Doris of Ohio. I cannot express in words how this touches my heart. When I make something I always hope that it will bless someone, bring a smile to a worn heart or a pattern would give some hours of leisure and contentment to someone I will probably never meet. When I see this-it's like I get a smile back and my heart is so....oh...gratified. So, thank you, Doris! Thank you!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

'A Cat Named Peony'

If there was a rug of mine that reaches back in time for me, it would be this one. I loved cats growing up. We never had them, but I sure liked them. I briefly had two in the sixth grade. I had to keep them outside and I did not have them very long and my mother felt uncomfortable with their presence. But in the few weeks that I did have them, I looked forward to being with them everyday. I read cat stories- my favorite being Beverly Cleary's 'Socks.' I checked stacks of books out of the library about cats- cat breeds, cat grooming, cats around the world.
When I was kindergarten age, my grandmother would walk me to school every morning and we played the game of counting cats- sort of a version she made up of 'Eye Spy.' I loved it. Those cats seemed so mysterious and sweet.
At my grandmother's house was a large pine tree under the kitchen window that I would watch robins playing under. I would stand and just watch them from that window as my grandmother talked to me about everything.
I have this pattern now listed in my Etsy store. It will come with a book that I put together of photographs and color suggestions- a recipe and fun for you.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

The Pumpkin Patch Is Ready


All through fair June the tasseled corn waved forth
In shining green arrayed;
The warm,sweet air that bloweth from the south
It's verdue richer made,
Till now it's ripened husks are gathered all
The granary within;
And harvesters are met this Autumn night
To fill the waiting bin.- 1893

I love how this came out! The colors are great and the design so cheery! This pattern is now available in my Etsy shop along with a book of instruction, colors, and more.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

'The Pumpkin Patch'

Just this morning, in a personal e-mail, I was explaining to a friend of mine that with a creative mind comes a lot of disorganization. So many ideas flying through my mind and I 'zig-zag' through them. I start on something and think of another as I work- I frustrate myself. And when something just jells in my mind, it's ready to just 'become'- no matter what else I may be working on!  So, for quite some time, I have thought about doing another version of my 'Miss Pumpkin.' Miss Pumpkin was so fun to play 'dress up' on- and I have heard that from customers as well. So, I drew up 'Patch' and decided she needed a husband. He will be holding a little sign that reads, 'Hay Rides.'

I ran into a problem as I worked on the background. I ran out of the blue I was using and needed a creative way to make it stretch. Originally I had wondered about adding a hay-bundle, but then decided against it. Well, as my blue came to a screaming halt, the idea of the hay bundle came to be very practical. Then my husband suggested a couple blowing leaves- perfect!

Right now I am trying to decide what color to whip-stitch my edge with.

My favorite part of this is the background blues- I used a Double M Sheep and Wool color, 'Clementine' and an unidentified (LOL) matching gray/blue. I just love how the colors create a brisk, blustery day.

Now onto a little kitty in a bed of Peonies........

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Patch and Jack Pumpkin




A couple years ago, I designed and hooked my 'Miss Pumpkin.' I have her hanging in my work-room and I love her to pieces- I do not know why that she makes my heart smile like she does- but, she does. I have heard many ladies say they have enjoyed hooking Miss Pumpkin because she is fun to dress. And since I have a real fondness of Pumpkin head dolls, I have known I wanted to do another.

So I have Miss Patch this time and she has her husband, Jack by her side. They are enjoying a pumpkin patch and Jack will be holding a little sign reading, 'Hay-Rides.' I am thinking of making a small paper pattern of a 'Baby Pumpkin' to go with this pattern- an idea my sister, who is also a Pumpkin Head fan, is encouraging me to do.

I have heard from many ladies that they would like to see some of my patterns made into punch-needle patterns. That is one of my very next things I will be working on. I have my Cameo needle and we have a long road trip ahead- my son's wedding in Seattle. I will be taking it along to work on as we drive. Wish me luck!

I hope you are having a good summer- I can never get enough of summer- I savor every bit of it!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Sweeter Than Honey


I love summer. I think I am the only one I know that loves everything right down to the heat. I love to feel the warm sun hit my feet and arms as I hang wash or make my way across the yard to the little screened in 'house' my husband made for me a few years ago. I love to take my coffee and whatever I reading and, of coarse, my hooking. I love hearing the birds- this year we have an abundance of doves. We have a family with sheep behind us and I listen to the sheep 'baa.' 

I am a bike rider. Love my bike. During the winter months- cold, wet, bleak- I long for the sunshine and the breeze hitting my face as I pedal. If my legs did not get so tired, I could ride for hours. 

I love summer time memories of being a child- the outdoor vegetable market in Denver, Colorado- the fragrance of tomatoes and onions as I tagged behind my mother and father. I used to spend a lot of time at my grandmothers who had 'Five-O Clock' flowers that she and I would go see hand in hand- oh! and her grape arbor. There was a bed of pansies that I loved- the dark soil and an array of violets and yellows- it was magical to my little girl eyes.


On Father's Day, I sat on our deck talking with my husband and sons while I stitched this little tag for this rug. I kind of like it. 

Bee happy!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Color




COLOR. I would have to say there is nothing more that sparks an idea in my mind than color or seeing colors together. A few months ago, I was in a fiber shop where I saw a yard of what was labeled 'Charcoal' wool. It was a gray blue and mottled so beautifully- instantly I saw how I would use that. In fact, as my husband and I traveled that day, all I could think of was that color. I cannot tell you what I see because since then, I have scribbled out my idea and it has grown to include valleys and a river and houses and activity. I have it scribbled in my sketchbook, on loose paper and two church bullitans- which all started with a single color on the shelf of a quilt shop.
"What a pretty color I made!"



"Baa!Baa! " Trivia: That center color on the clothes-line is my favorite color on my shelf. 


I cannot decide what I like best about this design- is it the scalloped aprons? The wool hanging to dry on the clothesline? Those little sheep? I think it's all that color!

I did something different this time around. I asked for a rug hooker to volunteer to hook this rug with me. Kim Jones from Nova Scotia came forth with her hook ready. I sent her the design and quickly I 'remembered' how many changes I make as I work out a design. Poor Kim! However, by having her hook the design and giving her the freedom to do as she wanted, what I really wanted took place. Often enough, I will see what a customer has done with a rug and I am blown away with their wonderful choices- wondering why I didn't think of them myself! LOL Kim hooked her ' drying wool' and her colors are different- all of which may spark an idea with someone else that hooks this rug in the future.
Kim's girls! LOVE the colors she chose for her 'Mother'- very Tasha Tudor to my eye.

Wool moving about in a breeze- what cheerful, happy colors Kim chose! 

"Hand Dyed Woolens" will be available at my website- vintageheartprimitives.com or in my Etsy shop, https://www.etsy.com/shop/VintageHeartPrims?ref=si_shop    in the next few days.




Monday, June 9, 2014

Hooking "Hand-Dyed Woolens"




Kim and I are 'hooking' right along. I will be adding swatches of hanging wool from the clothesline and a piece that will hang from the stick above the dye pot. As always, have touch-ups to do- Mother's face needs brightened. Little girl's right shoe needs to be replaced with a dark brown as I have a cream that I stuck on when I was not near my wool supply.

Kim sais she is unsure that she likes her lady- that she may re-do her. The goal is that when she is finished that she loves it. That is the most important thing to me. However! I like her lady. I like the very Tasha Tudor colors that 'Mother' wears as I am a complete fan of Tasha Tudor.

To be continued!!

Saturday, June 7, 2014

A 'Hook-A- Long'


Months ago, I saw an old vintage image that depicted a little girl over a dye pot dyeing wool. Behind her sat a row of her dolls. Immediately, I started thinking of a wool-dyeing rug. As always, it is a process. I started going though images of long ago of wool dyeing over a big pot. I started this rug and it was just not what I wanted as I knew that I really wanted to hang pieces of wool on a clothes-line and I could not figure out how to incorporate it. So, the idea went to the bottom of my 'pile.' Then one day as I looked for something else, I saw it again and instantly, I saw how I could add a clothes-line and keep the whole design 'balanced.' When I am done hooking this, I will fill the clothes-line with hanging wool.

I am doing something fun as I work on this. a few weeks ago, I asked my Facebook friends if someone would like to 'hook-along' with me. Kim Jones of Nova Scotia volunteered. I keep teasing her that I should have warned her that I change things as I go- how could I forget about that?

"Kim- OK- Boy, did I warn you a few weeks ago that I tweek things as I go? Alright, so- this is what I did last night- I moved my left sheep over about an inch or so and I turned the right sheep's head. Actually, now that his head is turned, I do not think that I needed to move the left one at all. Are you able to trace off that pattern? I am thinking of making a minor change on little girl- if you can trace - it will be easy. Gosh, I hope this is fun for you- next time I do this, I must issue a warning- LOL!!!- Yvonne"


After a bit of changing! Baa! Baa!

Kim's little girl- Look at her peer into that pot! I wonder what color she has in there?

Kim's sheep- I am "dyeing" to know what color she will choose for her ground and sky! Kim hooked my 'Here's My Heart!' months ago and she wow-ed me with what she did with it- she has fabulous color choices!