Saturday, 27 June 2009

Another day with the dyes

Dyeing days - Part III.  

Friends 'making a mess at my place'.  Lots of shibori and Procion 
dyeing going on. Homework done, stitched pieces ready 
to go.  Gorgeous day - dye pots set out for action. 
There was plenty of that, plus a bit of tray dyeing, screen 
printing, and anything else that came to mind.   We had a blast.

Come mid day, the weather being absolutely perfect, 
an indigo vat prepared.  

Hilary, these prints look gorgeous.

At the end of the day, vat still productive, Mr. R. even felt 
the need to refresh his wardrobe.

Mr. R  and I are now going to throw some cloths in suitcases,
and tomorrow fly off to Athens.  Early morning ferry to Naxos,
and relax.   Which is good - my hands (and feet) are somewhat
splattered with dye, so I will come back refreshed and cleansed!

Thursday, 25 June 2009

Take ninety squares of fabric

Add thirty children, around about age 6.
Divide the group into two.  Dye up the
squares.   Pleating, flag folding and
scruching.     Have cup of tea.

the washing

the ironing

Another day in the Marquee at Walford Mill.  It must be summer.  
As part of a local School visit - sixty children in all, working 
with artists.  Other activities included making a self portrait 
wooden figure, and papier mache bird heads.   These looked 
pretty amazing laid out on the grass, drying and then to be painted.

My next task is to make all the little flags into bunting.

Monday, 22 June 2009


and pole wrapped on Saturday.  The weather was not as
warm as I would have liked - buckets of indigo wrapped
in newspaper to maintain the warmth.    On Sunday, with vats
ready, they were up and at it, producing swathes of blue
cloth.   So gorgeous I could happily have taken them of
the washing line and home.

When I could drag them away from the vats, we 
explored rusting fabric with ferrous sulphate, plus
colour stripping using brushes and printing blocks.

A few photos of indigo shibori produced over
the weekend.  

Clamping No 2

Indigo dyed cloth with potassium permanganate.
Fabulous colour.

After washing out

Wrapped pole just doing it's own thing

Wrapped cotton and silk, and Japanese Larch stitched shibori

Only a tiny taste of cloth produced over the weekend.
Pretty impressive I think.   Never enough time to take
photos, life gets somewhat frantic around indigo vats
and enthusiastic students.  We all went home, tired
but very happy.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Ancient Story

Only a month late, the May JQ for Contemporary Quilt Group

I just had to use one of my gelatine plate 
printed pieces.  It was telling me old surfaces.
The images are screened through a flour and
water paste silk screen, scraped carefully 
with wooden kebab stick.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Catch up time

Some how I seem to be involved in making Journal Quilts with 
three different groups.   This will have to seriously be reviewed 
at the end of the year!  
Right now I have a quiet few days before total chaos next week,
three workshops, dentist, hairdressers - this will end with a flight
 to Athens, Greece, followed by a ferry to Naxos.   Ten glorious
days in the sun doing not a lot.
So, odds and ends being tidied up, old and new projects to be 
considered, and Journal Quilts to be stitched.
A good thing about JQ's they make you think, and you do get 
to try out different approaches, which, might or might not get
  used again.    Enter Flour and Water Paste - yuck - the chosen 
technique. Fortunately at Summer School Jette introduced us
to F&WP on silk screens.  Yes - see above. Result.   Still on 
a limited palette, I really must invest in more textile paints!

Quilts have holidays too

Four Journal Quilts, all stitched together - safety 
in numbers.  They are going on holiday to the 
Wales, for a whole two months.   They will join other 
friends on The Contemporary Quilt Group stand.

The question is will they sent me a postcard?

Sunday, 14 June 2009

At the end of the day/week

And so launches a summer of workshops.
    Last Saturday the first of the Dyeing Days, 
    on Wednesday a trip to Devon teaching 
Indian Stitch techniques. and yesterday 
the second Dyeing Days workshop.  
Brilliant. A lovely day, great enthusiastic
 students, who took home lots of 'creative' 
washing.  Small shibori pieces and long 
lengths for scarves. 

Since it was really warm I couldn't resist 
setting up the first indigo vats of the summer. 
A surprise treat. Decisions, decisions.  
Procion or Indigo?  

Fingers crossed the weather will be kind next
weekend, I'm taking a two day Indigo workshop
which will include colour stripping and rust
dyeing.    Gosh, it is good to get the vats out!

Remains of the two buckets of indigo.

Call in the cleaners

Friday, 5 June 2009

The Gelatin Plate

I bought Rayna Gillman's book, looked at the pictures.
never got round to trying this process.  So, it was great
to find that the workshop included gelatine printing.
Such fun, very wobbly, and additive.

My plate developed a death crack immediately as it
wobbled out of the tray.  I think it had started to
break up due to sitting in the warm sun - lesson learnt.
The top half of the picture shows a perfect print from
my fellow student Lesley's perfect plate.  Below what
you can do with a death crack and then chopping the
whole mess up and printing with 'bits'

Lesley kindly gave me her still perfect plate, transported
home with care.   I played for a couple of hours printing
in slabs of colour, all very fine, but then I really started
playing and came up with these interesting surfaces.

Tomorrow I am taking the first of the Dyeing Days
workshops here.  On Sunday I plan to paint or stencil
the cloth and see what happens.   I have just remembered
I still have the slightly shabby plate in the fridge.
Better go and check it out - still useable I wonder? 
I could managed an hour this afternoon!

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Summer School

A fabulous weekend - good company, too much good food, 
fantastic weather.   Our tutor's luggage ended up in Nice,
only to be delivered two hours before the end of the workshop. 
There was just enough time for Jette to show her latest 
quilts, which then made sense of all the surface marking
techniques we had been messily making over two days.

Mark making with found objects



At last more than one colour - my silk screen
with remains of flour and water paste resist.

All together now;  lost the white background; rubbings;
black screen print with 'voids'; flour and water paste
resist; cerise and yellow print.

Learnt lots. Dealt with the bringing wrong paints. Had only
textile screen paints black, cerise, a very pale turquoise 
and yellow to work with. Since the first exercises were
restricted to one colour, it did concentrate the mind.

And then there was the gelatin plate printing. brilliant.
More on that in next post.