Monday, June 15, 2015


I have 12 scarves available, each selling for a $25.00 donation ($50.00 retail value) to Operation iDream ( Each scarf is 12" x 57", with hand rolled edges, and dyed multicolored hues- perfect for accessorizing your wardrobe.
Simply go to Operation iDream's web site and click on "DONATE". Your generous donation will get much needed supplies to Zambia this summer!!!
Let me know when you have made your donation and we'll talk about picking out your scarf.

If shipping is necessary, email me and we will arrange for a separate check to be sent to cover the postage fee.

Love. heart emoticon

Monday, May 18, 2015

Fabric Painting- Online course begins May 29, 2015!

Martha's Shell Finished

If you have ever hit a wall where you think you have lost your mojo, your spark, or your creative magic, you will know that it sometimes takes a new medium, a new technique, or a spurt of inspiration from a completely different or unexpected source to get it going again. Fabric painting may be the springboard you need to snap you out of your creative doldrums, or to open up a whole new set of possibilities and options.

Here is a bit of a forum conversation I had with one of my fabric painting students:

Student: How do I paint the effects of water so it looks like it is underwater?

Marjie: All you have to do for the illusion of being under water is to really thin down a color and brush it lightly over the top of what is already there that is dry. If you want a blue "veil" of color, really thin down the blue. For a grayish blue, add a hint of white and an even teenier smidge of black to the blue and add water. Always test the color on a scrap of fabric before committing yourself. Again, if it looks horrid, wipe it off right away with a damp paper towel and remix a better color. Sometimes the very best solution for the underwater look is to ONLY paint a FEW ripples over the scene and allow the rest to remain open. So often when we look down into water, we can see to the bottom of the pool but the reflections are what we notice. Reflections can be blue (sky), gray (sky), white, or even brightly colored because the reflection is bouncing off of flowers or a plant or what have you; whatever is near the water.

Jan's Underwater Painting on Fabric

No artistic “talent” or experience is needed to take this class. I love those students who feel nervous about drawing or painting. In fact, you are my favorites to teach because I love the excitement that comes from exploring new territory and gaining new confidence. All that is needed is a willingness to try. Come play with fabric paints and color.  Let’s see what new avenues of exploration emerge and what broad new boulevards of potential open up for you!

Kathy's Salmon

Marilyn's Mother in Law, Helen

Suzanne quilted her piece first and then painted it

Five weeks-online $50.00 (US)

Email me if interested in seeing a supply list or go to Academy of Quilting and view the supply list there.

Thanks for looking everyone.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Online Fabric Painting Course-How To Paint Fabric Using Jacquard Textile Paints

One day I needed a particular fabric for a fiber arts project I was working on for an upcoming show.  I could see the fabric in my mind’s eye. I knew the color, the design, and the affect I needed but do you think I could find it in a fabric store? No. I drove to a different city. I drove to San Francisco. I looked in Los Angeles. Nothing was what I needed or even came close to what I wanted. That was how I first began designing my own fabrics. 40+ years later, I am still designing my own silk, cotton and wool fibers and so can you!  

AQ’s Fabric Painting course goes beyond dyeing fabric. It is much more personal than simply making a print on fabric.

In five lessons, we will explore the beautiful possibilities of using Jacquard Textile Paints on cotton. Make a hand painted centerpiece for your quilting or crafting needs.  Learn how to mix color, blend color, paint using washes and layer color to make one of a kind art fabrics that can be embellished or used as is. 

This is going to be an exciting class with many opportunities for sharing ideas, making discoveries, and taking some artistic chances.  

This class may be the springboard you have needed to make your quilts more exciting, your crafts more interesting or to just snap you out of your creative doldrums.
Fabric Painting is both a process and a project class. It is geared to the beginning fabric painting student, but will also offer challenges to those more experienced in art techniques.  

No artistic “talent” or experience is needed to take this class. I love those students who feel nervous about painting. In fact, you are my favorites to teach because I love the excitement that comes from exploring new territory. All that is needed is a willingness to try. It’s all good.

Here is the link to register for the online course at the Academy of Quilting: 5 lessons/$50.00 (US)


Thursday, April 2, 2015

Lavender Farms

This lavender farm is one of the most magical places on the face of the earth. We discovered it by accident while driving around the Mt Shasta, California area a few years ago. The panoramic views are spectacular. The place resets my calm and restful button!

While lavender is one of the most powerful essential oils, it makes a wimpy natural dye.  The color on silk, cotton, or wool is the same as tea.  My thoughts about it are, why waste the blossoms and your time making beiges and browns when you can throw a few tea bags in the water and have the same results in way less time?

Many times, we just have to try things to know for sure if they produce good color. Other disappointments include Zinnia blossoms and pink geraniums. On the other hand, grand surprises include black hollyhocks, blackberries, cactus fruit (prickly pear) and raspberries. 
What have you planted this year in your dye garden?

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Plants For Natural Dyes

Items that make superb natural dyes that you may not have considered include "prickly pear" (the fruit of the cactus plant),

Camellia blossoms, 

Juniper berries,




Dyer's Woad,

Flowers such as zinnias, cosmos, hollyhocks, geraniums, hibiscus, or sunflowers!

Start thinking about what to plant in your garden now for great fun in the dye studio this summer and fall.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

How To Stretch A Canvas

My new video on how to stretch a canvas can be seen on YouTube. Here's the link:

You can use this technique to stretch a painting you have already made, finishing it off for a formal presentation. If you have a needlepoint that would look good as a piece of fine art, you can stretch it the same way. Sometimes misting the piece on the back with warm water to shrink it tight can help any sagging that might occur.

Stretching your art work on bars and then framing can take your art to a new level of professionalism.

If you would like to take my fabric painting course online, watch the roster at The Academy of Quilting ( 

Batik With Trapunto 

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Returning to Online Teaching!

I am pleased to announce that I am returning to online teaching through the Academy of Quilting based in the lovely country of New Zealand. The first course I will be teaching is "Wool Dyeing" using acid dyes with a lesson at the end about how to use natural dyes on wool fibers.
I am excited to be back at it and hope to meet many more students located all around this wonderfully fiber rich world!

Marjorie McWilliams

Marjorie McWilliams image
Marjorie McWilliams began dyeing fabric in 1969 at the University of California, Santa Barbara and earned a degree in Studio Art and Art History from CSU, Fresno.
Marjorie taught on line through Quilt for 13 years reaching over 15,000 student from all over  the world.
She currently owns Fabric, which creates custom dyed silk, cotton, and wool textiles. Her fabrics can be found on all 7 continents.
You can find out more about Marjorie by visiting her website at

- See more at:

Here is the description of the course:

Class Details for Wool Dyeing

Number of Lessons: 5 
Price: US$ 50.00 
Tutor: Marjorie McWilliams 
Start Date: 27 March 2015 
Click Enroll to register.
It’s easy to dye your own custom colors on wool fibers such as flannel, felt, roving or yarn. In this five lesson course, I will show you how to dye solid colors, mottled colors, bright or pastel colors, and combinations of hues on the same piece of wool for a spectrum of beautiful results. Making your own colors will take your wool projects to a new level of artistic sophistication and professionalism.

See you there????

About Me

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Woodland, California, United States
I am a fiber artist. I am a teacher. I teach, I create, I counsel, I listen.

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