Saturday, August 21, 2010

jewelweeds and gemstones

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Late summer finds a bumper crop of Jewelweed growing near my garden. The flowers dangle, like delicate orange speckled jewels that glisten in the sunlight and early morning dew. Other names include (but are not limited to) Touch-Me-Not ... (Balsaminaceae)..Impatiens capensis...snap weed.

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The humming birds love the nectar hidden deep inside the flower, and will use their long tongues to find it. The wasps enjoy their share of the nectar as well, but are known to bite holes in the back of the flower to get at it. This action would seem to side step pollination. Not to worry. Some of the last flower buds never open, but pollinate themselves inside the flower....known as a "hidden marriage"...the plant makes a genetic clone of the parent plant and a seed is still produced for next years plants.

A yellow dye may be made from the flowers, but I have yet to try working with them. I had hopes of trying it out this year, but I am busy with other things. Jewels and Gemstones of another sort...the Endless Mountains Fiber Festival is coming up, and I've been working on making some new thread hooks and stitch markers and buttons for my offerings this year.

Soapstone, Cats Eye, Bloodstone, Mikuki Cubes, and Pietersite...just to name a few, from the Potomac Bead Company. Wonderful quality, color and clairty, lustre and luminescence...they are a delight to work with...

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My camera attempts to capture all the details, I can hear the auto focus changing and buzzing with frustration.

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Moss Agate Rice and Jasper stones from Happy Mango Beads find their way to onto stitch markers...tools to enhance a knitting project somewhere, someday, and will assist the owner in keeping track of pattern repeats..

I enjoy making functional tools that are beautiful to look at...

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...and I hope they continue to bring the same sort of enjoyment after they leave the booth. Hope you can stop by and say hello! I'll be in the Antique Spinning Wheels booth... number 27 & 28....

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11 comments:

~ Phyllis ~ said...

Cyndy, Your stitch markers are beautiful. I love all the many stone colors.
Hope you have a great time at the festival.

DebbieB said...

Oh, my! Such lovely pictures - you have brightened and decorated my Sunday morning. :)

Good luck at the festival!

Cathy said...

Lovely, lovely - so inspiring! Good luck at the festival - wish I could be there.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I wish I could be there too. Best of luck.

Judy said...

I plan to be there....see ya then.

judy said...

I love the jewel weed. As a kid we popped the seed pods. Jewels in themselves. I've had so many in the gardens this year, I've had to pull them out. Sad.

Love the other jewels. Have fun and do well.

Valerie said...

Beautiful!! Love to see jewel weed sparkling in the sun and dancing in the weed.

Those semi-precious stones look so smooth and cool! Lovely tools you are making there.

elizabeth said...

Beautiful! Wish I could come!

The Gingerbread House said...

Beautiful stitch markers..some would make a lovely necklace...Ginny

Kristi aka Fiber Fool said...

Those stitch markers are beyond beautiful! Lovely!

Cathy said...

In the Lacis newsletter - maybe you can find this in the library?

From Flax Seed To Woven Cloth
History, cultivation, processing, spinning, dyeing, weaving, finishing and folklore. (SQ15) $50.00
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9780764334665

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