Detail from "Rain Dance," an original quilt by Sherrie Spangler

Thursday, November 8, 2012

My "wisp of color" scarves

I'm done with the fabric bowls, and this week I'm working on another fall ritual: scarves. Due to tendonitis, I had to stop knitting scarves about six years ago, but now I've found a painless way to turn all that yarn and fabric snippets into scarves.

My latest Sulky Solvy scarf, with my yard goddess.
I blogged about this last year, but here's a quickie tutorial on making the Sulky Solvy scarves. This year I'm adding more fancy fabrics.

Step 1: Pull out your fiber ingredients.
First you pull out a bunch of yarn, decorative threads, scraps of pretty silk, organza, lame, painted cheesecloth (above) and anything else you like. Leather and feathers would be fun -- must try that sometime. Make sure the fabric looks good on both sides, since both sides will show.

Steps 2-3: Sandwich snippets between Sulky Solvy and stitch.
Cut a piece of Sulky Solvy (I used the original). Mine is in a 12-inch-wide roll, so I cut a piece 12 inches by about 60 inches. Lay it on your table and cover half the width (6x60 inches) with your ingredients, leaving longer pieces of yarn hanging off both ends to make fringe. Fold the other half over to sandwich everything together. Pin around edges with safety pins, carefully roll it up, and take it to the sewing machine.

Sew everything down in a grid -- I space mine about 3/4 inch apart. You can also sew diagonally or randomly; just be sure to catch everything with sewing otherwise it will fall out when you dissolve the Solvy. Make sure the bobbin thread looks good, because it will show. Gold thread is REALLY nice, but regular old cotton is fine, too.

If your machine foot sticks to the Solvy, blow on it with a blow dryer. I had to do that last year, but this year I didn't have a problem. 

This shows how I sewed a grid and some diagonal lines.
Hold the stitched piece under running water to dissolve most of the Solvy, then swish it around in the sink for a few minutes. Squeeze the little wad (it looks pathetic at this point and I didn't get a picture), then roll it in a towel to get most of the water out. Hang it to dry, or dry on a towel. If you want to iron it because the fabric is too wrinkled, use a press cloth or low heat if there is even one smidgeon of a delicate thread in there.

Wear your colors proudly, with Sheila and Helen!
I took the orange scarf out for a test drive yesterday to the Chihuly exhibit at Seattle Center (those are his Pendleton blankets) and decided that it goes well with the purple jacket. I'll have to make another one to sell at the bazaar.

More scarves from the last few days.

Yarn looks so fabulous in big hanks that I usually leave it that way instead of rolling it into balls. When I knitted, I saw the value of having it in balls so it would unwind easily, but now I love to drape it around the studio. If I lived alone, it probably would be draped all over the house.

I got this display rack last week at Shibori Dragon, which is closing its retail store and selling its fixtures. (It'll still do mail order and sell at the quilt shows. It's a great store, with fabric, yarn, beads, books and surface design stuff.) I also got four nice necklace display busts that'll be perfect for the scarves.

I started buying beads just to embellish my quilts, then I bought so many that I had to start making and selling jewelry to pay for the beads! Does this resonate? Now I finally have a proper way to display them. (No, I didn't make ALL of these.)

Hope this inspires some of you to make scarves. For more details, see last year's posts:

Have a colorful day


Pam said...

I just love those scarves, your color and fiber choices are truly what makes them so awesome! I get the bead thing, too. I have been making bracelets and earrings to sell at recent shows mostly to try to manage the accumulating inventory of stones and findings!! Funny how that happens =)

Diane said...

Sherrie - Your scarves are gorgeous! Yarn and misc. fibers have always been my biggest weakness. Yum! The colors! I'll have to try a scarf this way...Thanks for sharing.

The Idaho Beauty said...

Love that way of displaying your necklaces - truly art that is then ready to wear.

And you DO look so good in orange! I figured you must be busy with something, had forgotten about your scarves. Just beautiful.

As for the sticky Solvy - a long time ago, I watched a demo for using the different Solvy's and one suggestion was to lightly dampen the surface to make it tacky. Doesn't take much and I think it might give you the same edge as the new fangled and expensive sticky Solvy.