The Shop

A Place Where You Will Find Loveryly Gifts and a Few Personal Opinions

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Process of Creating Silk Scarves~~~MysticSilks

For me, each step of creating a silk scarf is comprised of intense moments, and I think that's because I want each piece of silk art to be just what the buyer is looking for.

OK, I have layered and rolled all the dyed scarves onto a wire roll( see photo to the right). Just layering each scarf and then rolling the batch of layered scarves is a 2 hour process. You don't want any scarf sticking out and overlapping onto another scarf. After I've rolled the batch onto the wire mesh cylinder, I set up the steaming pot. (See photo to the left).If I would have purchased a pot from a catalogue I would have payed close to $300.00.This steaming pot saved me about $280.00, because I bought a clam chowder boiler pot. Then a friend rolled a piece of sheet metal to fit inside the pot leaving about 2-3 inches away from the sides of the pot. He popped it with some rivets to hold its shape. On the bottom of the pot sits a raised round metal pan with holes cut into it. This is where I set the cylinder of scarves on top of that metal pan which is 7 inches above the water

I always set up the steaming pot inside the garage. I pour 4-5inches of water into the bottom of the pot. The water never, NEVER touches the cylinder of scarves. All you want to have circulating around the scarves is steam, never water. Before the cylinder is placed into the pot I wait till the water is at a low boiling point.

The cylinder is placed onto the metal pan, careful not to touch the sides of the rolled sheet metal. I then cover the top with a couple of braided rugs, 2 towels, and heavy cotton sheet, which I tuck around the side of the pot to hold the steam in.

Then comes the waiting game; usually 2-3 hours. It takes that long to allow the steam to set the dyes deep into the fibers of silk. I am up and down the two step into the garage maybe 30 times in that 2-3 hour period of time.

I am making sure the pot has not tipped over. I am checking to make sure the water is still at the right level and slowly simmering. And that the steam is pouring through the rugs, and towels I have placed over the pot: These are all good indications that everything is coming along just right!

The time is finally up! I turn off the electric hot plate, and lift the cylinder full of steaming scarves out letting them cool before unwrapping. I empty the chowder pot of hot water in some weedy part of the garden. Turn it upside down to drain any excess water. I hang the rugs and towels up to dry.

And then , and then I begin to cut the strings that held the wrapped scarves onto the cylinder. I unroll the batch, then begin to peel off each layer of newspaper, releasing each silk scarf. I check to make sure there are no splash over of other dyes. Hey, no matter how careful I've been, sometimes it just happens. But they are beautiful ooopses.

About 3 batches ago, I had some beautiful ooopses. Each one I sold, the buyers comments and feedback were all very positive. Go to my feedback and read. Except for one. I gave her, the buyer good feedback;payed promptly, etc. She slaps me with negative feedback and the most nasty comments: Poor quality, poor wrapping.

WOW! I was heartbroken. I contacted her offering her a refund if she was that unhappy.

She wrote me back, she couldn't return it. She had given it as a gift!!
If you figure that one out, let me know. How displeased was she? Or did she dislike the person she gave the gift to? But if you didn't like someone, would you give them a gift?

I have remained puzzled since that time, and kind of sad , too. Cuz I really loved that scarf. The one to your left is that scarf!

OK,the scarves are peeled away from the layers of newspaper. I let them dry overnight. The next day, I wash the scarves in a gentle soap water. Then each scarf is rinsed till the water runs almost clear. I say almost because, it seems for the first few washings there will always be a residual bit of dye in the scarf. Out comes the ironing board and each scarf while damp is ironed. Then I set up my photo taking drop cloth, and begin to set up the scarves for their photo session. This is an all day process. I take 5-6 different angles with different props.
The I head over to and edit each photo till I am satisfied I have brought out the best depth of colors. You'd think we'd be finished, huh?
But no! Off I go to or to , and if it's a painting, off to and I spend another 2 hours per scarf to list each scarf separately on one of those website stores.
I wait with anticipation till my silk beauties sell, and I hear how pleased each buyer is--:)
Thank you--:)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Process Of Creating Designer Silk Scarves, Part 2```MysticSilks

To the left is a photo of me during the dying process of my silk scarves. In this batch I am doing three scarves at a time.I try to wear the same clothes when I am placing dyes on the silks. You can't believe the number of shirts and slacks I have ruined with dyes.
I used to use resist to create images on the scarves. But as I began to lose the fine motor movements in my hands I turned to using a mixture of dyes and blending them with a diffusion solution, which adds beautiful dimensions to the dyed scarf. After each scarf is dyed, I wait 24 hours to allow the dyes to sink into the fibers of silk. When all the dying is completed which is usually a 2-3 day process, I then begin to layer the scarves between long pieces of unmarked newspaper. I use 2 pieces under the scarf, and 2 pieces on top of a scarf. The photo shows me in that layering process.
Layering 5-7 scarves, takes about 2-3 hours. It does for me anyways, because my back won't tolerate bending over for long periods of time. And the layers of paper requiring cutting to accomodate each scarf, plus the scarves need to have all areas covered or you take the chance of a bleed through during the steaming process.
Tomorrow: The Steaming Process

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Long Road To a Designer Silk Scarf```MysticSilks

I thought I'd share with the general public
the long process of creating a designer silk scarf from start to finish.
The beginning step is the ordering of the pure white silk scarf, which like oranges, come all the way from China: I wish there was a place in the USA to order them from. The scarves arrive, and the next step is washing them all by hand in a soapy water that extracts any remaining silk worm residue. Then it's dunkie, dunkie, into a fresh rinse water, a gentle squeeze, and hang them up to dry.
Or while damp, I usually just iron the wrinkles out. I did not take any photos of the beginning steps.I was saving the reader from some boring views.The photo on the right is the next step. I pin rayon tabs of cloth at the top of my scarf, and around the sides.Then the silk scarf/scarves is/are pinned to a wood frame, which I should mention, were made by a dear friend of mine to whom I am forever grateful. The wood frames are filled with remnants of French dyes from previous dying sessions. I usually pin and frame two scarves at a time trying to pin them taught to help the dyes to flow more evenly over the scarf.. I cover the floor with a drop cloth to keep the floor free from dyes. After each silk scarf is dyed I let it dry for 24 hours. Then I set up another two to dye. My limit for the dying project is from 5-7 silk scarves. After we're through taking you through all the steps , you'll understand why```Smiling~~~ I use French dyes as there are the best and produce the deepest and most beautiful colors.

Tomorrow, I will post more on the process of creating designer silk scarves.

Be aware of this, the process is not a walk in the park.

Please read my other blog: In My Personal Opinion.

Thank you


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

FIne Art, Original Paintings( Reaching Out And Up)~ BY MysticSilks

"Paintings must be looked at and looked at and looked at...No writing, no talking, no singing, no dancing will explain them."-Charles Demuth
This wrapped canvas painting can be seen and purchased at
Thank you,

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I Found The Best Photo Editing Site- By MysticSilks

I'm not sure how this post will appear after I am finished. I am still not proficient when it comes to uploading photos onto my blog. So please excuse my clumsy attempts.
The two photos you are viewing is of a water color painting that I created about 5 years ago. The MRDD facility that I was employed by, had a contest for a winter scene drawn, or painted by a resident or employee. I managed to complete the two deer in a deep winter scene and submit it as an entry to the contest.
I won! And as a result I was awarded a $100.00, plus they paid to have the painting professionally framed, and in addition had hundreds of boxed Christmas cards made with my water color painting on the cover of the card!!
I may be an artist , but not a photographer. And when it comes to these computerized digital cameras, well, just tell me which button to push to take the photo. I know nothing about any other setting on my Cannon camera,and just recently figured out what the heck a pixel was/is.
OK, so I take the photos, and download them or is it called uploading?
I have photos that seem to have too little light, too much. The photos are too large, the color or tint is off.
I used to struggle with this complexities of getting the photos just right to upload to my online shops:
And then one day I read in the etsy forums that someone was using
I thought yea, right another complicated only for genius type people to use site. OMG! Was I in for a surprise!! A most wonderful, delightful surprise!
I uploaded my poorly taken photos to, clicked auto fix, used the re size , or crop feature, plus any other adjustment I thought the photos needed. Then clicked save. Bang! It saved my now beautiful photos to my computer. From there I now am able to upload with pride to my artfire, or etsy site!
If you are having the same problems with photo editing that I was, I highly recommend:
Try it, you'll love it!

Friday, October 8, 2010

In Time For The Holidays~~~MysticSilks

I began creating a new line of silk scarves two months ago. My how time flies! I wanted to freshen the stock of silk scarves in my etsy shop.

For me this is a huge creative task. that once completed, and the scarves are listed, I let out a grateful and huge sigh of relief.

My greatest desire is that my customers are pleased, so I try to think of colors and color combinations that will appeals to the eyes of the viewer/s.
My scarves are never worn by human models, and are created in a non-smoking studio.

After each silk scarf is completed, I like to personalize it with a name.
We'll start at the top from right to left: " Plum Crazy"````" Every Thing's Coming Up Roses"~~~" Emerald Isle"~~~" Nebula"~~~" Caribbean Sky"~~~" Chocolate Covered Plums"
Come on over to:
Many lovely gift ideas for any and all occasions--:)
Also, want to add a new online site that I've
Thank you MysticSilks

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Snow Angel's View~~~MysticSilks

Have you ever laid on the ground after a snowfall, under the trees, and a full moon, moving your arms like a flying bird and your legs sideways, creating a snow angel? Several years ago, I did. Then I looked up through the trees still covered in places with snow,at the face of the full moon. I was so enthralled at the beauty I beheld, that I ran and brought my camera back, laid on the ground, and snapped a photo. This painting is the result of that night.~~~Enjoy!
Painting is on canvas board, acrylic, measures 28wide x 22 length in inches.
Sprayed with matte finish to protect colors.

Unframed, because it is less expensive to ship.