Each year I volunteer during the setting-up time at the Textile Center Garage Sale and manage to come home with useful items, bought at a steal. The different thing this year was the accompanying snowstorm! So dire were the predictions (which came true) that the sale was postponed to next Saturday, April 23. YOU SHOULD GO.
I bought three jumbled bags of natural-dyed wool for a total of $4. I dumped out the small skeins to sort and examine them. They each have labels on crusty old masking tape or more formal cardboard circles listing the dyestuff and mordant, like carrot tops/alum, oxalic acid + tin/cochineal, and indigo osage orange/alum. Some just list the mordant, like copper or alum. I thought this pack of delights might work well for a small tapestry of flower shapes similar to those in Scandinavian tapestries. That tapestry will certainly include yellow flowers!
A volunteer in that area said that I should be sure to wash the skeins before using them. Since I will use them for tapestry, which is not washed, I think I won’t wash them all, but will try the paper towel dye-fast test (see this post) on skeins I choose. If they bleed, I’ll wash them. I learned about that in connection with linen, but it should work with wool, too–right?
My true found treasure was a small embroidery of a deer and bird in the woods. It’s beautifully done and very sweet.
I bought some Indian fabric to try out a pattern for lightweight summer pants and some pillow forms. I also bought, for $2.00, a packed bag full of various pieces of interfacing and fusing web. It’s something I look for every year, and I now have a place in my stash where I am always guaranteed to find what I need along those lines.
If you planned to go to the sale, you can still go. And if you haven’t gone in the past, it’s a great experience!