Ode to Woad!

The last quadrant of the Souvenirs de France was the upper left section called “Ode to Woad.” It rather eluded me as first of all I was concerned that if I didn’t count the Rhodes stitches correctly, it would need a lot of restitching. And then the fabulous sequence of stitches that Tony designed, what if I? Well you know all of that self doubt that we all have. Much to my surprise it all fell into place just as he designed it. I was thrilled to say the least!

So you ask what is Woad? Well let me tell you! Woad is a yellow-flowered plant of the cabbage family. Grown as a source of blue dye extracted from the leaves after they have been dried, powdered and fermented.

Before we left for our trip, we were told to bring some piece of fabric, clothing, etc with us to dye. I really didn’t have time to look for anything, but I was reassured that we would find something at one of the brocantes or flea markets that we would attend. I was told that they do like to barter, but this gentleman that had this linen that I wanted, well he was hearing nothing of it. I did pay his 8-10€ and glad that I did!

A very fun day that we had with this lady dying our fabrics as you submerged it a vat of Woad water. When you looked at the fabric in the water, it looked yellow, but the very moment it hit the air, it turned blue. So the longer you left it in the water, or the number of times you placed it in the dye vat, the darker it became. After you got the color that you liked, it was hung on a clothes line to dry. And then laundered. I still have to figure out what to do with my piece, which is a table runner with lots of cut work. I just remembered that I didn’t get that picture for you…next time!

So you wonder what the glass container that’s full of threads in front of my piece? It’s a crystal jar that I bought at a brocante specifically for my orts. I should probably add a few beads to it.

Headed back to the south of France 🇫🇷 soon with Tony Minieri led by Frances Jue for another stitching trip, so it’s time to look for another one!

AlleyCat loves sitting on my lap while I’m sitting here stitching or working on my blog.

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About Vicky

Needlepoint, morning noon and evening! what could be better than this? I work on the computer in the daylight hours editing stitch guides and drawing stitches that you will see in the next Needlepoint Now for your stitching pleasure! In between this, there is time for taking pictures of my stitching adventures, Facebook and writing stitch guides for canvas that I am stitching for Needle Deeva, Maggie, Ruth Schmuff and others. Mostly needlepoint you ask? well we will talk about my cats Sylvester and AlleyCat, better known as "the brat". Of course I can't forget Felix who was the love of my life for over 14 years. He broke my heart as he departed for the Rainbow Bridge last year. Oh did I mention baseball?

2 thoughts on “Ode to Woad!

  1. Vicky, your needlepoint of France is spectacular! You do such amazing work. What a beautiful picture of kitty. I almost lost my kitty this winter. She had a neurological event or mini-stroke and things went downhill from there but now she has recovered for the most part even though she is 17. She loves my lap also and is so loving. Enjoy your next trip to France. I loved France and the food is to die for.

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