Summer is not over yet...but some projects that we have been working on this summer have come to a halt. This summer I have made two paipo body boards, a new non-traditional alaia, some body surfing paddles. I was fortunate enough to find some pre-joined paulownia at Redbrook Lumber in Cville for relatively cheap. It was really a pleasure to work with the sustainable yet invasive paulownia and it is really light and easy to carve with the hand tools. I cannot wait to see how these things ride.
We also spent a long time growing and cultivating the small harvest of safflower plants for dye and oil seed. We realized through this experiment that it is necesary to grow a larger crop to increase the pigment & oil yeild. We grew about 40 plants and we only got a Quarter to an Eighth oz. of each. It would be worth much more if it was weed. It will make us a small batch of oil and pigment. Although we both feel that the labor in both growing and hand cultivating the thorny safflower plants may not be worth all of the hard work considering the seed and petals are cheap on the market. Although it has to get flown in from canada or india and that is not very ecological on our behalf... but I guess it is better than supporting petroleum based dyes.
Another project Allyson had going on was her margiold dying frenzy. We got so stoked on that dye this summer. She decided to dye these cheap canvas shoes. What a beautiful canary yellow!
Last but not least our molting horn worm...so beautiful that we relocated it instead of killing it. Man organic gardening can be brutal with the killing of insects:( I do not feel vegetarian friendly at times. After we released it we wished we had kept him inside and fed him tomato leaves till he molted into the infamous hawk moth...they are so beautiful. Hopefully some more stuff on the way! Stay tuned! ~j