Tuesday, June 23, 2009

JOAN MORRIS: Workshop Day 3

Here we are at day 3 in this amazing workshop. As we wended our way to the ferry Janet & I both agreed that we were quite exhausted but also impressed with the class. Using natural dyes is so time consuming compared to Procioin dyes. The colors - for my tastes- are perfect however - so it seems just about worth it. Janet, on the other hand, is not that partial to the muted colors although I think she rather likes the cochineal and lac madder - and the indigo is a big hit with all of I think!

In this group of photos Joan is demonstrating the use of 'capping'. This technique is karamatsu - or Japanese larch pattern. A cork is securely wrapped in a double or quadruple layer of plastic wrap )so it does not soak up dye) and then the top of the bit pf fabric is also protected with plastic and wrapped around the cork.
Photo above: the bottom of the fabric showing the securely wrapped cork
Photo below: the right side of the fabric showing how the cap should look.

Photo Below: How to wrap a small bit of fabric to add more textural dimension.
These next two photographs show two glorious pieces of fabric that were patterened with the capping - or karamatsu shibori - technique.

It's worth double clicking, I think, to see a more close up view of these fabrics!

Finally -some dyed fabrics! These were the products of the second day of the class. Two dyebaths were made on Day 2. Madder and Fustic. Madder was the one dye that I had lusted to use. Unfortunately, since I was rushing to wrap things up so that I could get on the ferry I never got any fabrics into the madder bath. Arghhhhhhhh!! Fabric must be thoroughly soaked (for an hour or more) and then mordanted (another hour or more) in order to have them ready for the dye. I had not managed to get these steps done in time! I did have a piece of silk that I got into the fustic bath though and it produces a beautiful golden yellow that I love.
The madder dyed pieces float in the breeze on the left & the fustic pieces are to the right

What fascinated me the most about using natural dyes is how very different they can be depending on the fabrics used. I had a selection of silks, silk & wool blend and some ultra soft rayon twill. Many folks brought some hemp/silk fabric that I loved (and will have to order some from Dharma) that took the dyes very well. The wools and wool blends seemed to take very well to these dyes while the silks & other blends dyed to varying shades.
They look like prayer flags to me!
These photos show a technique called "fireflies". The name made me remember how much I miss seeing the fireflies that filled my childhood evenings with awe. Joan sews on cotton balls of varying thickness to achieve these effects. This is something that I will have to try ! Hearing her speak about all of the different things that she has tried to achieve this effect was interesting! I think that's what I like the most about dyeing ... the "what if" questioins that float through one's brain !

Another fabulously creative day - tomorrow- the final day of class- we were able to unwrap some of our 'mystery' pieces to see what lay beneath!

1 comment:

Jacq said...

More wonderful pictures and explanations

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