Friday, March 25, 2011

Hello New Bu!

It's time. Actually it's past time. I've launched a new version of Tickety Bu online. It's a one stop location for shopping, Tickety Bu colorways, the Bu Blog and all things Bu.

I'll be sad to say goodbye to this blog, it's been such fun to develop and to share with everyone over the years, but rest assured the Bu Blog will live on at it's new home. I hope to see you there soon!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Reflecting Pool

Water is mystical. Whether it be the bathtub, a sprinkler, a lake or the ocean, water has the magical power of engaging our imagination like nothing else. 

My kids and I love to look into puddles and creeks when we take our walks and see how our reflection changes with the ripples of the water. We imagine what might be in the water, and talk about the possibilities. Mermaids, sprites, talking fish, and frogs that become princes are just some of the many things we've dreamed of. I love the water and am so glad that my kids share the wonder with me.

This colorway celebrates the things our imagination can dream up just by seeing a glimpse at our reflection.

Monday, March 7, 2011


As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I'm sick of winter. And right after my last post about the new Paradise Lost colorway, the whole family got sick. It was a stomach virus followed by the flu followed by a cold. I was the lucky soul that got them all. So, yeah, I'm sick of winter.

I guess that is one reason why I've been so attracted to vibrant, tropical colors lately. It's an escape from the white snow and the dreary gray that is this season.

These specific colors were also inspired by the fact that next month my husband and I will be celebrating our 13th year of marriage. I know that many people think 13 is unlucky, but I feel anything but. In fact, I feel very lucky. Not just for having the love of a great man, but for being content in my life as a whole. I truly feel very happy to simply be who I am and where I am right now in my life.

My husband and I were married in Cayman. So, in this 13th year, when I feel so lucky, I thought it would be nice to capture the colors of that beautiful place that are still, after all this time, so vivid in my mind.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Paradise Lost

I love living in New York. I'm from the south originally, and most recently, Richmond, VA, the capital of the Confederacy and all things Southern. Having lived in Texas, Virginia, North Carolina and states of similar latitude, I was not at all prepared for winter in the north.

The first few years were not that bad though, the snow was a novelty and since it doesn't normally get very icy here, like it can in the south, I was quite pleased with my ability to adapt and embrace the cold.

That was until this year. This is just one shot of many in this theme. That's a table and chair on our deck. I just this week saw that table for the first time in over two months.

I know it seems like I'm exaggerating, but I'm not when I say that there were snow drifts taller than me on our front walk this year and ice dams over a foot deep on our roof.

Needless to say, I'm no longer a fan of winter. I yearn for warm weather. The ability to see the ground, heck anything green would be great. I yearn for warm weather, warm enough to wear a tank top, shorts and no shoes all day. Warm enough to open the windows to hear the birds chirping, and feel the breeze wafting through the house. Warm enough.

So, the next two colorways of the week speak to my current obsession with the end of the never ending winter of 2011. This week is Paradise Lost, a bold colorway with shades of the clearest blue oceans, the golds and pinks of tropical birds and flowers, and shades of the palm fronds I wish I was laying underneath.

Saturday, February 12, 2011


Lately everyone in my family has been suffering from a bit of the winter blues. The kids are cooped up and tired of it. It's cold, snowy and icy outside and they long to run and roll around on the grass, play in their sandbox and tree house, and just be in the warmth of the sun. This winter has been long and gray and it's wearing on us all.

We have spent a lot of time inside doing art, crafting, and dancing as a result. These are the activities that never get old, always inspire good moods and stretch the afternoons out in a pleasant way. Recent projects have been for my youngest son's birthday which is next week. Paintings and cards have been made and the colors that keep coming up are muted and soft. It's as if the kids have forgotten the bright intense colors of summer, the colors of warmth.

I did this colorway as an homage to this time with them. While I'm as guilty as they are of complaining about the weather and yearning for the long, lazy, warm days of summer, I'm all too aware of how these days spent in such close quarters for so long are a gift. Before too long, the birds will be chirping, the warm breezes will be wafting in through the open windows and the kids will go outside again. The snuggles under the blankets will be few and far between, the kids won't be right next to me from the time they wake til they sleep again, and I'll miss it. I'll wish for the cold of winter that will bring them to my arms again. So for today, I celebrate this gift. And when I look at this colorway I'll think of them.


Sunday, February 6, 2011

Funny Valentine

I remember cutting out Valentines when I was little, construction paper hearts, lace doilies, little cupid silhouettes, all in these colors. So, I guess this is a trip down memory lane for me and a little homage to Valentines past.

I wanted to do a colorway with red, but not a dark colorway. I tend to go dark when I use red and I wanted something more fun and carefree. More about love than anything else. This colorway has red, a bright cheery red, a smoky grey (I can't stay totally away from something moody) and cream. I love how hints of caramel come out when it's on velour and how the gray is so prominent in the interlock.

It is indeed a funny Valentine.

Sunday, January 30, 2011


I'm a fiber artist and have done a lot of dyeing in my time, but have never done batik. I adore it, it's right up my alley, but something has always held me back. Who knows what, or why, as I'm usually rather adventurous, especially when it comes to my craft. I guess I'll just have to continue to admire from afar, and appreciate the beauty that the wonderful Batik artists out there create.

This colorway was inspired by an unconventional quilt made from a myriad of batik fabrics. Deep blue green, coral, pink, blue, olive tones and almost black were mixed throughout, but the whole thing had a cohesive feel. It felt funky and fun and special. I took colors from the quilt that were the essence of that special blanket and made a colorway that hopefully speaks to it's origins.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Tea Party

I was recently developing a colorway for an Asian themed stocking and thought it would be great to do one inspired by my love of tea.

I drink tea almost daily. I love the ritual of steeping the tea leaves in my traditional Chinese iron pot, waiting for it to cool to just the right temperature, the aroma of the brew that always seems to match my mood. (Maybe that's because I have a different blend for almost every day of the month. I know there is a Wool Hoarders site, perhaps I should look into a Tea Hoarders?).

As I was dyeing this though, my daughter came in to talk to me, asking what I was going to dye today. When I told her probably something about tea, she insisted that I do a Tea Party and proceeded to pick out all the colors. Of course, they are the epitome of a little girl's tea party with all her dolls and her imaginary friend, Jeanette.

Soft gold, princess blue and girly pink with hints of light purple throughout.

I just hope Jeanette likes it as much as my daughter does.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

China Blue

I don't play favorites with color, I love them all equally. But every once in awhile I show a bit of favoritism for one over the others. The love affair is usually short lived as I'm always lured away by the brilliance of another hue. This week's love, blue. No idea why really, maybe it's in stark rebellion of my recent romance with pink, but this day felt like a great time to dye something blue.

I hope the other colors aren't jealous.

Meet China Blue, it's bright and deep simultaneously. And oh. so. blue.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Things I Have Learned as a Dyer

There are things I have learned over the years as a fiber artist. I never much cared for that term, I call myself a dyer first, but people tend to get confused by that one. The things I have learned are many, and they tend to be more universal than fabric specific. I find that doing this has taught me a lot about not only dye, but life.

1. I love color.—Duh, right? It's true though, my love of color is why I do what I do. And, I've learned that doing what you love is worth a lot more than any income you can earn. If you aren't doing what you love, get out now, change your path and find a new one.

2. Colors act differently depending on the fabric. One colorway can look remarkably different on velour than it does on interlock, terry or french terry. This has actually taught me a lot about my kids. Same family, same parents, but the kids all react differently to our parenting. We've had to learn that they each need something different from us, because they are themselves unique. And it's important to not only let them be unique, but to celebrate it.

3. Dye has a mind of its own. I get the best results when I let go of my expectations and allow the dye do it's thing. It does indeed have a mind of it's own. I get a daily reminder of the lack of control I have in life through my work and it's given me the ability to be more free with my kids, to let go of my preconceived notions and just let life happen. When you do this, you get to be a part of true magic.

4. Colors in the dye bath are often not what they appear. Some colorways that are hideous in the dye bath are the most stunning when all is said and done. Mandarin is one such colorway. It's one of the ugliest things I've ever seen while dyeing, heck, pictures don't even do it justice, but the end result is simply stunning in person, especially on terry. So, don't judge a book by its cover, you just might be pleasantly surprised by what's inside. This is probably the most important lesson of all.

5. Heat helps. Not sure how this applies to life in general, but a little heat goes a long way when pasting up and mixing even colors. Just sayin'.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Wood Floors

I adore small towns. This area is full of them, which is one reason I love living here. There is a tiny town outside of Albany called Sharon Springs. Population around 520.

I told you it was tiny.

It's a quaint Victorian town with one main street, full of inns and local merchants and craftsmen. There are plenty of farms around too, and we had the chance to visit one this weekend. Friends of ours have a farm there where they raise goats, chickens, a couple of sheep and one very cute llama who is full of personality.

They have a garden that I can only dream of and rolling hills as their view. It's just about perfect if you ask me. The kids had a blast with the animals and climbing in the hay loft. The farm house was, "much more beautiful than our house" according to my daughter. She was right of course as kids often are in their unbridled, frank honesty. It was a great weekend getaway, with a fun drive up, a great visit with friends and the chance to explore a place we had never seen.

This colorway was done for our friend, made in a blanket for them as a thank you for a fun weekend and to keep them warm in the winter in their 200 year old house. The idea for it came from my favorite part of the farm house, the floors. Original to the house, wide plank wood stained so dark that it looks black at night and the darkest pecan I've ever seen during the light of day. Worn and gorgeous, I'd live there just to have those floors.

The colorway is contemporary, Think Restoration Hardware meets antique charm. It's rough and tumble in it's personality, but ultra soft and plush like all Tickety Bu items are. It's called Wood Floors.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Bitey Bu Galore

I haven't posted anything for my local wholesale account in awhile, but I just finished an order of fun Bitey Bu for them. I loved seeing them all together and thought I'd share the fun with you all. The Bitey Bu is the ultimate teether, a blend of wood and fabric, natural and safe to sooth sore gums. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Stone Garden

The first new colorway of 2011, Stone Garden, was inspired by a book I'm reading. There is a setting in the book where Mina, the heroine frequents. It's on a cliff, overlooking the ocean in winter and there is a cemetery there. She sits there often, watching the ships, the lighthouses and thinks and pines for her lost love. As I read it, I imagined the gray shades of the water, sky and head stones, the lichen growing on the tree trunks and the pale grasses on the ground and plucked the colors from my mind for this colorway. It's soft and cool, with wonderfully muted shades. Perfect for this time of year.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

A Year of Colorways

I tend to get tired of the same ole' thing. Maybe I secretly have ADD (those who know me well would laugh at that idea as I'm about as anal retentive and regimented as they come), or maybe I'm just inspired by the coming new year and a fresh start that it represents. Most assuredly I was influenced by friends in other professions doing similar things, but I've decided to dedicate this year to dyeing. New colorways, new techniques, favorite colorways with fresh new looks. I'm starting today with a new look to an old fave, Transform.

Wish me luck.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Final Stockings of the Season

I had a plan, then it all went awry when I got a migraine that lasted three days. So, plans change, and we adapt. I'm going to offer the same items, just on a bit of a different schedule. I pulled colorway ideas from the Facebook Fan page, everyone had some great ideas!

Tickety Bu 2010 Stockings:

  • November 29, The Fifth Monday, stocked
  • December 9, Fresh with Mezzo Bu in Mother Earth, Sugar Plum, Strata and Lagoon, Cuddle Throws in Almond Mocha and a brand new black and white colorway called Ink Blot.
  • December 13, Necessitae (previews will be up by Wednesday) with Cadara Bu, Bitty Bu and Cuddle Blankets in three colorways — Lucky, Dried Hydrangea and Earth Rainbow.

I also have more Cadara Bu just stocked on Etsy and will be adding some Bitty / Bitey Bu sets as well.

Happy Shopping and Happy Holidays!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Tickety Bu is on Etsy!

If you haven't noticed, Tickety Bu has made it's way to Etsy! I have only been wanting to start up my shop there for about 2 years, but it kept getting pushed to the bottom of the to do list. Well, what better time than now? Keep an eye out though, stockings there will be unannounced and often surprises. I will not stock custom slots there for now, I'll keep those just for my Facebook fans and announce them there, so don't worry that you'll miss an opportunity to snag a custom order. Happy shopping!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Win a Cadara Bu™ on Beneath The Rowan Tree

Lori from Beneath The Rowan Tree is one of my favorite people. A smart business woman, a good friend to me and many others, and a talented artist. I follow her blog and love her views on childhood and play. We have a mutual love fest as the kids and I are horders of all things BTRT, and she has her fair share of Bu. Can you feel the love?

Well, when she asked me to play in her holiday give-aways on her blog, of course I said yes. I'm honored that she would think of me in that caliber and it's always fun to talk shop with her. Check our her blog, with a chance to win a Cadara Bu™ in the Marvel colorway and keep reading each week for other fun goodies being given away.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Cool Cards

I needed new business cards and needed a newer version of care cards to use with the Cadara Bu, so I shopped around for something fun. A friend turned me on to Boo and I'm so glad she did. My care cards have a different picture of gorgeous dyed bamboo on one side and all the info on the other. My biz cards have my favorite colorway on one side and contact info and a little thank you on the other. They are half size—small, cute and fun!

Bu, But Not Blanket

A good friend and fellow wahm asked me to dye up a couple of shirts for her, one in jewel tones and one in whatever I wanted. Her favorite colors are cobalt and purple, so I took that and ran with it. I haven't shown them to her yet, so let this sneak peak be our little secret.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

DKol Photography and Her 365 Days

A local friend and photographer is blogging a photo a day in her 365 Day project. Check out her latest subject. Bu never looked so good!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A Special Custom Order

This custom was close to my heart. I got a note from a customer who wanted to do something special for her friend. I don't usually take custom orders in this way, but I just had to help. My customer's friend recently lost her baby and she gave me her hospital blanket to dye and upcycle into Cadara Bu for her friend to use later when she conceives again. Having suffered a loss myself, I know all too well her pain. I wish them all the best of luck in their journey and hope that these blankets can bring comfort along the way.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Latest Customs and New Colorways!

I just finished two very fall inspired colorways for two custom orders. One is more girly in nature than the other, but both are deep and rich, two different takes on the fall colors that abound outside now. The first is called Earthtone and the second is Quiltblock.

I also added new colorways to the latest Fresh stocking. I've found a renewed love for blue, inspired by finding some antique turquoise jewelry of my great aunt's. She loved the stone and had many beautiful pieces of it. Another recent inspiration has been our heirloom hydrangea. They have dried on the bush and have the most gorgeous combination of colors.

These new colorways are Aztec, Dried Hydrangea, Elation, and Starling

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Recent Work

I have been remiss in posting. Shame on me! I have been hard at work on customs, new product launches and a huge co-op. Here are some snap shots of just a bit of it. Enjoy!

Several new colorways!