Hey There! I’m Myra.

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Welcome to my creative corner where I share my passion for natural dyes and all things fiber related. I hope you’re inspired by my projects and think, Hey I can do that. Please do, and share your results!  I’m always learning, and that’s part of the joy.

My passion began by osmosis: My mother is Dorothy Beebee; she illustrated the mushroom dye book Mushrooms for Color, authored by Miriam Rice. I spent large parts of my childhood hunting for wild mushrooms, smelling them drying behind our wood stove, and visiting mushroom fairs with Miriam and my Mom. However, I found most of it uninteresting and grew up hating the smell of mushrooms.

This shifted in my late teens when I finally paid attention to the colors my Mom created. She became my dye teacher. We started dyeing silk together,  and by my mid-30’s I became obsessed with dyeing wool to crochet into vibrant hats.

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Eventually I’d assist her in dye classes she taught for the Sonoma Mycological Society (SOMA) and at Pepperwood Preserve. My hats and scarfs dyed with mushrooms sold at the mushroom fairs next to the newest version of Mushrooms for Color. Her passion had officially passed to the next generation.

My fascination with the dyeing soon extended beyond mushrooms to all things botanical.

With natural dyes, there is no single way to do it. Yes, there are general guidelines, this is chemistry after all, but the variability keeps it interesting. My go-to mantra is “Toss those fun-killing expectations and enjoy the process.” (Then immediately call my Mom and tell her all about it.)

I moved on from crocheting and became an obsessed knitter. When I’m passionate about a subject or craft, I go all in.

Side notes:

-More about me: My dyeing is squeezed in around my day job and my mothering of three kids: a teenager and twin preteens. I’m also a wife to a husband who’s love for me overpowers his frustration of a freezer overflowing with avocado pits and mushrooms.

-My dyeing method: I dye small amounts of wool for personal use, so I say the more dye stuff to fiber the better! In life I believe in moderation.

In my dyeing life: I want BRIGHT, BOLD, VIBRANT. Mix that color in with a neutral and that’s my idea of perfection. (Or close it to. Perfect doesn’t exist.)

– Other life passions: family, travel, and finding moments of humor and joy whenever possible.

 

4 thoughts on “Hey There! I’m Myra.

  1. Hi there, I found your web page by searching for avocado dyes. I boiled an avocado yesterday and to my surprise the water turned pink. Do you happen to know WHY it produces the dye? I can’t seem to find an answer on the internet!

    1. Hi Rooney! Excellent question, and one that I cannot answer. My dye books don’t mention avocado pits and I haven’t found a source as to why the pits have pigment. If you do find the answer, please let me know.

  2. Hi Myra!
    I tried organic gardening this summer. It’s good we aren’t dependent on the garden for food, because I would have perished long before now (unless I turned to eating the bugs instead of the plants). I’m originally from the mid-west (US) and I swear, we just didn’t have nearly as many bugs there as we do on the east coast where I am now transplanted. Anyway, the marigolds grew much better than the veggies (though they did nothing to deter the tomato worms, etc.), so I watched your dyeing with marigolds video. Thanks for the info. When you prepared the dye bath, did you remove the petals from the receptacles, or just plop in the flower heads whole?

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