Friday, July 18, 2008

~*Make It Do ~ Or Do Without*~

Hello Dear Friends! Yes, our parents & grandparents were RIGHT ON when they told us this! "Make it do or do without" is something good to learn..... especially in this day of rising gas & everything prices.

As many of you know, I live in a small town near a not-so-big college 'city'. We have a small mall & discount store close to home, but nowhere near here can I buy embroidery floss. The one store that did sell it... stopped several months ago. So now when I need a particular color of floss, I have to drive an hour away. That isn't so terrible as I'm in that area every other week. BUT, I've noticed too that the price of floss at those stores has gone up. It could be because everything is going up.... or it could be because they also know that the large discount store is no longer stocking it. Whatever the case may be.... it was/is due time for a change.

My good buddy, Ginger, was so kind to share the instructions for over~dyeing floss on her blog.... Primitives By The Light of the Moon that I was truly inspired! (Thank you Ginger!) I had to give it a try. Thus began my hunt for 'cheaper' floss..... starting with online auction listings. I also went through my own stock of floss to pull out the 'brights'.

I didn't have any commercial dye other than the dyes I use for wool. Not knowing if they would be good on cotton or not, I choose not to use them. Yes, I could have just made a quick trip to the discount store (and use more gas).... but I thought I would try my walnut crystals first. It worked!

Here is how my kitchen table looks right now....

The floss is still wet, but the colors are so much more to my liking. Would you believe these colors were once pinks, baby blues, yellows, 'Christmas' greens, and purples (for the most part)? WOW! Right?

My kind Brother-in-law gave me a box of vintage, wooden spools found in his Dad's barn. (Thank you Jimmy!) I've cleaned them up & plan to wind the floss onto them. Yes, that will be a chore..... but so worth it!

Now... it looks like I've got enough floss to last awhile. Guess it is time to get to punchin' or stitchin'. Oh.... I hope the cat can stay off the table until I get this all put away! LOL

Many smiles to you,



  1. Way to go Betty! I have used the walnut crystals, tea, and cushing dyes....Glad you gave it a try and the spools will work great. Can't wait to see what great pieces you come up with!
    Ginger :)

  2. This is such a great idea!! Goodbye, ugly pastels!!

  3. I can't wait to dye my old stash of threads. Love those old spools!!!

  4. Betty, love those spools. I probably wouldn't want to use the spools with floss on them. I can just envision them in a wooden bowl....

  5. Great job Betty. Isn't dyeing floss fun?? I love the spools, they are lovely!!

  6. Betty what a clever idea! Bet they are beautiful in person!! What's the first project you'll use these on?

  7. Betty, I don't know anything about dyeing floss, or wool, for that matter. But I like that you decided to take it on yourself.

    I did want to ask, though. Were you driving to Topeka or Wichita in your hunt for floss? I can't believe that there isn't some place in Emporia that sells floss!

    Good luck on getting all of your floss wrapped on those spools. But now really, do you honestly think you can keep your cat off the table while the floss is drying? SILLY GIRL!!

    And we try it with 6 cats. No matter how much we yell, pound on the table, air-swat at the cats, there's always at least one cat who thinks they belong on the table. Phooey!

  8. Thanks for such a great tip! Definitely have to do with what we already have on hand. To expensive not to even try. I am eager to try this!


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