Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Fabric Dyeing Weekend

The last of my summer plants were calling me, "use me before the frost". This past weekend between family obligations and 4 end of season football games (which the grand boys teams won), I played with every plant I thought would give a lasting color.
This first flower is dyers chamomile with a couple of flowers still blooming.

Woad which is used like indigo to give blue (but not as strong or easy to use as indigo). I read in an old blog from India Flint  www.prophet-of-bloom.blogspot.com that she used it in her Eco dyeing and achieved a burgundy, we'll try that.

My favorite red flower to give long lasting purple. (can't remember the name).

Add some red and green maple leaves,

place them on my premordanted with alum wet wool and roll up tightly. Hard steam them an hour, leave in the pot overnight, then I place the bundle in a plastic bag and set a heavy book on it for a week.

Unroll. I have a beautiful end of season memory cloth waiting to be used in a quilt.

Close up of the different prints, with rose pink woad leaves.

I'm starting to play with silk and rusty metals (I also learned this from India Flint's book "Eco Color"). Not quite sure what I'm doing yet but experimenting is half the fun.
So I laid out my raw silk and sprinkled on the same flowers and leaves, rolled it up with a copper tube and rusty metals. Tied tightly,

placed in the pot with additional plants, steamed it all for a good hour. Took it out of the pot and placed it in a plastic bag.

A few days later, the unveiling, what different colors come from plants with the different mordants.

And after washed and dried. Look closely and you can see the different leave prints.
This opens the possibilities to a lot of new ideas. But I'm not sure if the metals weaken the fibers. I don't know if I would use it to make a "heirloom" type quilt, maybe just some fun pieces.

Sunday night to my quilt studio I go working on the next house in my Family Tree quilt. And who comes with me, on one side I have little man making his own wool wall hanging, a witch flying on a broom and a full moon.

And on the other side big brother making his own wool piece.

My next house for the quilt. I hope to have all the houses finished before I go on my quilt retreat in November. While there I will finish putting the quilt together. I have a lot more embroidery to finish before then.
See you next week with the rest of my dyeing projects still in plastic bags brewing!


Peggy said...

Kathy, oh that wool is just gorgeous. You have the BEST results with wool I've ever seen. I didn't have any luck finding a supply of wool, by the way, but I'll keep trying. ;)
I love seeing your grandsons cutting and making and look forward to more of your results! xo

Anonymous said...

Love how your sweet boys enjoy creating with you! Your colors are turning out great...you are always coming up with so many good results! Love the beautiful weather as well. Hope to see you soon....Deb

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