Here is a photo of the indigo dipping we did a couple of weekends ago. Indigo stays on the surface of the cloth but I really thought it would go a bit deeper. This will definitely will need at least one or two more dippings.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Monday, June 16, 2008
We had a guild dye day on Saturday and I did an indigo dyeing experiment which was with arashi shibori style which is tied on a pole with string and then the fabric is all scrunched to one end of the pole and then dyed. The parts under the string and the folds resist the dye, especially with indigo (which apparently sits on top rather than entering into the fabric.)
Anyway, I don't have a picture of the indigo one yet because only one side of the fabric is dyed, the rest pretty much stayed white. I think that I had too many layers of fabric. The indigo penetrated maybe 2 layers of fabric but it couldn't get inside the mass of fabric.
This picture is also pole dyeing but this time the fabric is folded in about 3" folds, wrapped and tied around the pole. The fabric is then soaked in a soda ash solution for about 30 minutes and then the fiber reactive dyes are squirted onto the fabric. I will be letting this sit on the fabric for a minimum of 24 hours (up to infinity) and when I think it has sat long enough, I'll unwrap it and see what I got.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
I've been wanting to try arashi shibori dyeing for a few months now but it took some preparation. I needed some chemicals and a pole to use for wrapping the cloth around. I found a 2 foot plastic pipe from Home Depot that is about 4" in diameter that I thought would work well for this. This kind of pipe doesn't melt in hot water like PVC. So, I had this bolt of cotton fabric that I had bought at a garage sale a couple of years ago. Since the fabric was already dyed a rose color, I thought I might be able to do a dye discharge technique. So after I had tied up the cloth around the pipe with string and scrunched it down as far as it would go on the pipe, I boiled it in Rit dye remover. Unfortunately it worked too well and it took the color uniformly down to a light pink color. I had hoped that the dye remover wouldn't get down inside the string all the way to the pipe - but it apparently did. So, that was last weekend's attempts. I rinsed out the dye remover with clear water and let it dry over the last week.
This weekend, I decided to try adding dye to the fiber, instead of taking dye out of it. So I wet the fiber again, let it sit for about 1/2 hour or so, letting the water soak into the inside of the wrapping. I got out my ProChem fiber reactive dyes and chemicals and mixed up some urea water, alkalai powder and some dye. I mixed the urea water into the dye mix and added a teaspoon of alkalai powder which had some soda ash in it. I then poured this in little sections around the pipe. When all the light spots were covered in dye, I wrapped the pole in plastic wrap and let it sit for 24 hours in 70 degree or above heat (inside the house). It took several rinsings and a couple of washings with Saranthapol to get out the excess dye but it stopped bleeding after the 2nd washing with Saranthapol. It actually looks quite nice I think. It's only a yard of fabric. The fabric is very heavy and appears to be a double layer so it wouldn't scrunch on the pole that much. But I'm pretty pleased with it all in all. I need to try some different techniques now - smaller pole, more fabric, different kinds of fabrics. I would be able to get more fabric on a pole if the fabric was thinner: silk, thin cotton, cotton sateen?
I've been getting some books lately on fabric embellishing which look quite interesting. Also silk painting looks like a lot of fun. Painted silk would look really pretty inside a handwoven jacket.