Thread Dyeing and other Fun. Also a Call For:

Yesterday, I was making coffee and who ran past the window? A black Squirrel. I immediately grabbed some granola and put it on the sill. Grey Squirrel quickly ran over and started eating.

It is funny! At our subway stop there is a transgender person and a shoe shine man who both ‘beg’ change, the shoe shine man is new to the stop, he has priced his shine at 1$ hoping his customers will give more. I gave some change to the transgendered woman and she asked me to give the shoulder to the shoe shine man as I walked by!

Grey Squirrel didn’t ask, he just shouldered right in!

I am dyeing a color wheel gradation of embroidery thread in four steps for each color of the color wheel, 48 hanks of thread in total. I am doing this in preparation for the upcoming Boro Bag/Hip Bag class at The Clever Guild.

And Look! what just fell into my cart over at Amazon. I have been doing lots of embroidery over here and I find that I like 6 strand floss the best! I love the look of a single strand of floss, I like the ability to use all 6 strands, three strands, two, I am forming preferences related to embroidery threads.

These ‘100 calorie’ zip tight bags, all in a row, happy sigh. I am so glad you can’t eat the content of these bags! That would be a lot of calories.

I don’t think I got the recipe for the gradation down pat. I will be washing these samples today or tomorrow and I will need to tweek it a bit.

The 4 red thread samples you see here, told me the middle two gradations were ‘too close’. But they are so pretty all the same.

Who doesn’t like a gathering of good stuff to get the juices flowing.


I now have a fascination with breast pockets. I have been making breast pockets, not the blouses to go with them, just the pockets. I am changing my wardrobe to printed, button down blouses and pockets are key! Really, I like the name breast pocket, I no longer have breasts, but I can wear breast pockets!

When breast cancer survivors wear breast forms or prothesis, they need pockets sewn into their bras, camisoles and bathing suits to hold the forms in place. And flaps? Some reconstruction techniques use the word flap in the description of the procedure. I am not interested in any of that, but I like thinking about parallel ideas. In talking about clothing, when breast pockets have buttons, I think of them as nipples. When they have snaps, those too are nipples, with the added benefit of the actual shape (the male portion of the snap is nipple shaped). And with breast pockets on shirts, you can be prepared to stuff them full and change out the size of your ‘breasts’ in minutes flat (pun intended)! It is always good to have some useful pockets! In fact, I was putting embroidery floss in my breast pockets while laughing my head off in this in this post.

Do you know anyone who has had a mastectomy without reconstruction, unilateral or bilateral? Say you or aunt (mother, sister, friend, wife, coworker) was diagnosed with breast cancer and didn’t have reconstruction? In her name or memory, make either a single or a set of pockets and flaps appropriate to her choice, unilateral breast pocket or bilateral pockets and send them to me. I would like a huge pile of of pockets, in effect creating actual ‘awareness’, with a physical object that represents a real person.

And in preparation of the ‘pink month’, I figured I would ask for some help in creating awareness that does not exploit, or misrepresent me as a survivor and to go further, to shed light on us half/flatties! Some of the half flatties call themselves uniboobers! Funny, right? So, I invite you to make pockets and help raise awareness and pride in a choice I hope none of you ever face.

You can make them out of cloth, paper, I don’t care how or what you make them with, just make them. If you are interested in helping me out, please comment on this post. I will let you know where to send your pockets.

Here is a pattern for  a BreastPocket, if you feel you need one.

Edited to add:

Here are a few examples of the pockets I have been making, showing some pockets with flaps and just flaps:

22 thoughts on “Thread Dyeing and other Fun. Also a Call For:

  1. I’d love to see what the breast pockets look like because I’m not sure what to picture after your description! 😉

    Things seem to jump into my Amazon cart all the time! That silly Amazon. I didn’t know you could buy a huge cone of embroidery floss. That is awesome. I love dyeing and despite my numb hands I’ve been doing my best to do some embroidery because I can’t stand not doing it right now. I go in short bursts.

    I helped my daughter’s high school volleyball team tie dye t-shirts pink for their breast cancer awareness game on the 9th. I’ll miss it because I will be in New York but hope to see photos and I will take photos of the girls in their shirts before I go out so I can show you the pictures then.


  2. Reading this post I can’t help but think, “A transgender woman, a shoeshine man and a squirrel walk into a bar. . . ” (grin) I love love love the breast pocket idea and since this is my friend’s first Pink Month – this might make a special gifty!! You’re always so smart! Ohhhh and yeah – those gradated floss are great – along with the design journal!


  3. Thanks for adding the photos! I thought you meant a “regular” pocket but wanted to be sure. I LOVE what you have done with them! So many great possibilities.


  4. I’ll make some pockets for you, Melly! I love what you wrote today. And don’t worry about the middle two hanks. They’ll fit into another project! Dyeing is so much fun once you get over the clean up to dye/have to clean up again to cook thing. But then I tend to dye wool with weak acid dye. And I like Procion H better because I don’t have to mess with the powders that way. It just MIGHT be time to get the dyes out and dye some floss myself, with your inspiration! ;-))


  5. Of course, I am in! First I have to clean up the spurtted coffee after reading Nina-Marie’s joke intro! I didn’t know Amazon had cone thread. Dang!!! Did you know if you take a heavier thread like a Pearl 3, 5, or 8, dye it, and then split it; you can get a thread that is two toned? I had some vintage 8 cord twist that was too heavy for embroidery and discovered the hidden treat when I went to use a single strand. We have a lazy squirrel. We left the walnuts at the top of the tree for the squirrels. My tree climbing days are over (when Carl is home. :)). Most of the squirrels husk the nut and bury it in the flower beds. Lazy Lady just hides them under the plants. I think she is an apprentice for the Easter Bunny. Yes, the squirrels do remember where the buried nuts are, even under a foot of snow. They must have a map in their nest.
    When would you like to recieve the pockets? Wishing you and D a beautiful weekend. I think Arrow is in need of a few extra treats, Bobcat mentioned it. xoxo


  6. I am in too. 3 of my friends from 1 workplace, 2 from my second workpace, and my friend across the street. All are doing well. So far, no-one in my family yet.
    Love the little bird pocket flap.


  7. I’d like to make one in my mother’s memory . . . she became a uniboober. And, she wouldn’t wear clothing without pockets to carry her tissue in.


  8. Your posting was sent on to me by a friend living far from where I do now. I have been a flatty since 2006. First side removed late March 05 and second May 1 06. Got to tell you some years down the way that the thing that surprises me most is the huge number of people who do not notice!!!! Even more surprising because I was not a modestly endowed woman. Even during the year when I was one-breasted!!!!.

    Given a bit of time you will come to enjoy all the perks we enjoy. no bras means lots of saved dollars, more comfort on hot days (and I live where it is perpetual summer). AND BEST ONE I HEARD OF WAS A WOMAN BEING TREATED AT THE SAME TIME AS MY COUSIN WHO CLAIMS HER GOLF GAME HAS IMPROVED TREMENDOUSLY WITH HER LARGE BREASTS OUT OF THE WAY!!! Given time you will find yourself simply making sure that the gap is controlled when you bend forward and buying clothes (T shirts in my warm climate location) that accentuate your trim shape. I will try to get a pair of pockets out to you, But in the meantime I’ll share a thought that ran through my mind while in treatment…I never thought of myself as walking breasts so what does it matter if they are gone. I am still myself.


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