News from Flowerpot

It’s been a while since I last wrote here, and a lot has happened.

In a  nutshell – annus horribilis I think it could be called.

Mid January I had a fall, so easily done, and broke both ankles in three places.  Three months off my feet, no walking, no driving, no sewing. Then learning to walk again after the second lot of surgery.

It’s been hard going but I am getting there.  Crutches gone, one walking stick in the car as my security prop when walking on uneven ground.  The surgeon said it would take 12 months to fully recover, and with the help of much physio-therapy I am determined to make it by Christmas. 🙂

They say retail therapy is good for the soul, well my therapy is doing this in reverse.  The Tasmanian Quilting Guild is having their major quilt exhibition Island Quilts as part of the Tasmanian Quilt Expo 16-18 September in Hobart.  I will be there as Flowerpot Quilts selling lots of fabrics, kits, books, patterns, threads etc.

Tas Quilt Expo Poster a3

More later.  Keep smiling🙂

Summer fabric sale – January 2016

Fabric on sale

Flowerpot Quilts Summer Sale

(to make room for lots of new fabrics due shortly)

5th to 29 January 2016

Tuesday to Friday 10am to 4pm

30% off most fabrics

End of roll prices too

$10 off books

Kits, patterns, threads, etc all at discounted prices.

Phone and mail orders welcome.

Visa & MasterCard accepted.

Phone 0438 674 900

email – dombros2 @ bigpond . com

Fabric on sale 3

Fabric on sale 1

Fabrics pictured above going out at $18/m, $15 for end of roll.

Fun with Indigo

With another Indigo workshop happening this weekend, I made up a new brew, and tested it for colour, and tried out a few what-ifs.

Here are three scarves I chose to overdye, ones which for some reason didn’t quite make the grade for selling at markets.


Indigo overdyeing 2 - clamped and ready to go - L to R pink, orange, dk red

Ready to go – L to R – large pink, large orange/green and fuschia metallic.

And after dyeing –

Indigo overdye 2 - pink, before opening

Unclamped before opening

Indigo overdye 2 - bright pink silk scarf

After rinsing and ironing

Indigo overdye 2 - orange scarf in dye dregs

Orange scarf before opening

Indigo overdye 2 - orange scarf on opening

Opened and resting on gravel

Indigo overdye 2- Large orange silk shawl

Rinsed and ironed

Indigo overdye - Large silk shawl 2

Lovely fan design on end

Indigo overdye 2 - red silk & metal scarf

Fuschia metallic scarf has horizontal stripes


The what-if experiment –

Having carefully removed each bundle from the vat into a large bowl, I had carried them outside to unwrap and hang.  As the bowl had quite an amount of greenish liquid in it, I thought what if I put another bundle in the bowl to soak up the liquid, if it doesn’t work, no harm done and I’ll know that the liquid isn’t viable.

But wow – this is what happened to a small orangey silk scarf –

Indigo overdye - small scarlet silk scarf

Was plain orange/scarlet now beautiful mottled orange/green/yellow.

There might not have been much indigo left in the dregs, but the result really is something.

Now I’m off to try it again.🙂

Indigo Dyeing

The first class for 2016 will be a repeat of the Indigo Dyeing class.  Next Saturday 9 January, 9.30 to 4pm-ish.  We don’t need to worry about the weather as the roof is over the deck at last, working outside is so much better now than it was.

Email me for a list of requirements.

If you have done this workshop before, you will know the procedure, so you can have your fabrics already prepared – stitched, tied, banded, clamped etc.

Remember you can use any fabric for this type of dyeing.

Here are a couple of samples from previous times.

Indigo dyed silk scarf

Indigo dyed silk scarf

Sample quilt

Sample quilt

Summer time is a great time for indigo.

If you’re interested, please leave a comment and I’ll get back to you with more details.

Cheers, keep smiling. 🙂

Happy new year – and summer sale

Happy new year to everyone – may 2016 be a good year for you  :-)

The holidays are just about over and it is back to work again. 
I am having a fabric sale for the month of January –
Open daily Tuesdays to Fridays 10am to 4pm
30% – 50% off all fabrics – prices starting at $10/m.
to make way for lots of new fabrics due end of January.
Books, rulers, kits, threads, and haberdashery are also discounted.
Bundles of hand-dyes, bags of off-cuts.
Special prices for end-of-rolls.
Hand-dyed silk, wool, and cotton scarves are included in sale.
Flowerpot Quilts, 3947 Channel Highway, Flowerpot.
Ph 04 38  674  900.
contact email :- sue  @  quilts to dye for dot com.


Dyeing classes for summer 2015-2016

the grass is riz, the lawn needs mowing, but to the studio is where I’m going! Apologies to whoever wrote the old phrase “Spring is sprung, the grass is riz……”

With longer days and warmer temperatures, I’m spending lots of time in my studio dyeing and painting, and I can’t wait for really warm (hot) weather to start up an indigo vat also.

Dates have been set for my dyeing classes (play days for fabriholics) .  If you are interested in any of them, leave a comment below and I’ll send you the list of requirements.

Dyeing workshops – summer 2015–2016.  Second Saturday each month

October 10 – Dyeing day with Procion MX dyes. Using pure primary colours and not-pure primary colours, we will create some stunning bright and pastel neutral shades. Cotton or silk fabrics only.

November 14 – Painting day. Hoping for a sunny day, we will do some sun dyeing, shibori painting, and sun printing using found objects as a resist. Any fabric except wool will work for this.

December 12 – Dyeing with indigo. Explore this ancient method of changing colours. Try various shibori techniques. Works with any fabrics that are light to medium in colour.

January 9 – Create a piece of fabulous art cloth. Explore various methods of transferring designs on to fabric, using rubber stamps, wood blocks, gelli plates, monoprinting, and removing colour from the fabric with discharge paste and/or bleach products.

February 13 – to be decided.

March 12 – long weekend, we may change the date.

All classes are held here in my studio at Flowerpot, 9.30am to 4pm-ish.

Bernina Best of Australia winner for 2015

Bernina Best of Australia 2015 is  Eleanor Jean  by Linda White fromVictoria. It is wonderful hexagon shaped quilt made up of 22,500 quarter inch hexies.

I’ve tried several times to add a photo to show you, but either WordPress or my Tablet are having hissie fits each time I try .

I am sure that Bernina have a picture on their website or facebook page.

Cheers from a very cool (read – cold) Melbourne.


2015 – a new year, a new studio

Hi everyone, to all my readers a Happy New Year for 2015.

I’M IN !! 🙂 yeay.  After a lovely Christmas Day with 18 out of a possible 24 family members celebrating in the new studio,  and once the family had all returned home again, I started the serious (but very enjoyable) job of moving dozens of boxes from the various places I have been working for the last how many years.

Of course I had to start work on a new project before everything was properly set up, and have my first quilt for 2015 nearly done.  All raw edge strips for sky sea and sand, and fussy cut applique plants in the foreground.



Close-up foreground

Photos taken before stitching.  I’m about half done.

Here are some views of the chaos I am working my way through.

Studio front

Welcome sign

Welcome sign

From where I used to work to ...

From where I used to work  …

... to the new work space

… to the new work space

Dyeing supplies waiting to be put away

Dyeing supplies waiting to be put away

Working space in afternoon light

Working space in afternoon light

Afternoon light so bright the camera doesn't like it

Afternoon light so bright the camera doesn’t like it

There might not be a deck with a roof over it yet, but inside as you can see, the space and light are great to work in.

First market of the year next Sunday, and I need to replenish stocks which are well down from pre-Christmas markets.

I’ll keep smiling if you do too. 🙂🙂

The move in to the new studio begins …

I had intended to make this part of my studio update post, but that turned into such a lengthy novel, I decided to post separately.

Tuesday was our regular meeting day for one of the quilting groups I belong to, and as it was the unveiling of this year’s challenge quilts, my studio walls made a great display space.

Here are a couple of photos of the action – typical of when quilters get together – lots of chatting, oohing and aahhing over the quilts on the walls.

Channel Quilters challenge unveiled

Channel Quilters challenge unveiled

Channel Quilters

The little room at the far end of the main studio, directly below the large triangle window, originally meant to be for storage of all things textile, I have decided is a good place to set up the fabric shop and my market supplies.

Not much happening in there yet,

Fabric corner of shopbut in a week or so I will have all the boxes unpacked and displayed on the tables around the four walls.

I have closed the shop until the New Year, so I can get everything sorted before the Christmas holidays, re-opening the second week of January 2015.

I plan to have a relaxing corner at one end, with my bookcases, sofa and easy chairs.  This will easily convert to a guest room for visitors coming to stay, and the first guests will be our eldest daughter and her family, who live overseas, home for Christmas.🙂

Studio building update – dramas and smiles

It’s all happening here now.   The carpets were laid last week –

Carpet and vinyl to the left

Wet working area with grey vinyl surround

Vinyl bottom left of picture with grey and red carpets

Vinyl bottom left of picture with grey and red carpets

All the greys are soft and delicate to go with the colour of the window and door frames.  The red strip of carpet greets you as you step in the door.  It was such a beautiful rich colour that I fell in love with it when I saw it in the shop and had to have it.  Common sense took over of course and I went for the pale grey for most of the studio especially along below the design walls, so there were no distractions for the eye from what would be hanging on the wall, but I did get some red along in front of the doors and windows, I love it🙂

We did get the ceiling fans and lights in place just in time before the carpet was laid – we didn’t want the scaffolds being pulled around on the new carpet!

Installing ceiling an lights

Installing ceiling an lights

Fan blades fold in when not working

Fan blades fold in when not working

Then the plumbers arrived.  Chaos reigned for a few days while new water lines were installed, replacing the old and already existing pipes under the house.  Every now and then the cry would come up from under the floor boards, “Don’t turn any taps on for half an hour!”

Then it was the drainage that had to be changed over – one day we had the toilet in the house, laundry tubs and the shower that we could use, next day it was only the studio toilet, laundry and kitchen and the message would be “Don’t press the button or pull the plug anywhere!”

The last bit of drainage work under the house was changing the pipes under the old toilet, from the old terra cotta to the new poly-pipes.  We were warned what could happen, and of course it did – in chipping the concrete away from the pipe the bowl broke near the base – not repairable –

Broken toilet

There's a hole in the floor, dear Henry....

There’s a hole in the floor, dear Henry dear Henry ….

so it was off to the plumbing shop to get a replacement, actually able to get the same as the one in the studio – we now have matching loos !!

All new loo

While this drama was happening, outside everything went quite smoothly.  The new tank rolled easily from truck to new resting place on its gravel bed,

Manoeuvring water tank

Manoeuvring water tank

Tank safe on new bed of gravel

Tank safe on new bed of gravel

and the local water carrier came with a truck load of water to hold the tank in place so it wouldn’t move in  the wind – tank will hold 5,000 gallons and 2,000 is enough to keep it anchored in place until all the pipes are in place.

Transferring water from truck to tank

Transferring water from truck to tank

New drainage lines with gravel bedding

New drainage lines with gravel bedding

Meanwhile the outside looks much like it did last time I took a photo, still no deck, hopefully, touch wood, and all things crossed, we will have it before Christmas.

Studio today

Studio today

Till next time, keep smiling🙂