about the artist

Archive for July, 2007

Shibori Wrap-up

Tuesday, July 31st, 2007

This morning I got my hair dyed and discharged. So now I have some summery highlights in my red hair. It took 2 and a half hours so I feel as if the day is passing me by.

I want to finish uploading and making notes about my shibori pieces as this will serve as my virtual notebook of my work.

Judileigh knew that I was having a carpal tunnel problem which made the arashi wraps very difficult for me. She suggested I try stitching a tube to fit over a pvc pipe. Here is a silk dupioni wrap that I did by pinning and marking. I brought it home and stitched it.


Here it is after dipping in dye:


Here it is coming off the pipe:


Here is part of Sunday’s work. I bought a yard of linen from the school fabric locker. It was a very lightweight and loosely woven linen. I did lots of different techniques so that I will have pieces to collage.


  1. On the left is this scarf (second photo down on the left) wrapped and dipped in indigo.
  2. Next is a piece of red orange dupioni silk folded and clamped with washers and dipped in indigo.
  3. Top of the third row is a piece of the linen. The lines were created by making folds and doing a running stitch along the folds. Then they are drawn up tightly and tied off for dyeing in indigo.
  4. On the left underneath is the heavily stitched piece from earlier in the week that I folded and clamped with circles, probably film container lids.
  5. On the right is another plaid shibori. I used the linen and made half inch vertical folds which I stitched and pressed. Then I did the same thing, horizontally. The fold cause a resist, making lighter areas. The stitching also leaves some lovely fine lines.
  6. Top of the next row is the linen which was folded and clamped with two canning jar lids held in place with rubber bands.
  7. Underneath is the linen that was folded and clamped with different circles.
  8. Top piece in the last row is the dupioni silk that was stitched into a tube to make an arashi wrap.
  9. Beneath are linen that was tie-dyed and folded and clamped with bag clamps. (I am on the look out for these. they are like large barrettes.)

Here are close-ups of some of these pieces.


Here are the remaining 3 pieces:


  1. Top left is a piece of the linen on which I tried to use a piece of bamboo as a resist. I didn’t get the results that I want, but it is a nice organic looking piece of cloth.
  2. The bottom piece was a hand-dyed lime green which I tie-dyed around screws and then arashi wrapped on a pole.
  3. The final piece is the linen which I hand sewed around the pvc pipe for an arashi wrap. I love this piece. Here is a close-up:


My table mate Rita was obsessed with the triangle wrap which I tried on two pieces. She did it on silk first and got the mushy results that I got. She then used cotton and some very precise pressed folds and wrapping. Here is how it looked after coming off the pipe.


Here it is after unwrapping. It is really gorgeous. Her tenacity paid off.


It was interesting to watch all of the working styles. I was after lots of textures and fabrics to use in quilts. Some class members were very project orientated. Some just played and experimented with fabric with no intended use.

Coming Up for Air

Monday, July 30th, 2007

I finished my 5 -day marathon of indigo shibori dyeing yesterday and arrived home at 5 pm. There is a delightful cafe at the college, and they serve a wonderful brunch on Sundays. Mr C and one other husband came and joined the fibers class for brunch. I had Italian lamb, polenta and grilled veggies, adorned with a poached egg — yum! Steve had grilled smoked salmon cakes, roasted potatoes and some fabulous looking vegetable concoction. I avoided the sweet breads.

I have missed my new friends today, but I sure am glad to get back to my routine — especially my long walks with Maggie. I didn’t accomplish much today except for getting some laundry done, ironing and photographing my new fabrics. I am going to divide the photos into two posts. Here is what we look like when we are dipping in the big natural indigo pot. I will not divulge the names of these women photographed in this position!!


This group of fabrics is the silk/cotton blend dyed in Brazil wood with an alum mordant. I love, love the color and am planning to make a kimono style jacket from these pieces. I am going to order some Brazil wood so that I can dye up some more pieces.


Here are the fabrics from Friday, that I was too tired to photograph:


  1. On the left is the large silk charmeuse scarf, shibori wrapped, which just about did me in!
  2. The next piece on the top is dupioni silk clamped and dyed in Queen Ann’s lace. I washed it with the indigo fabrics and it picked up a blue cast, which I love. The other dye became a nice avocado green
  3. On the bottom is a chiffon scarf tied and dyed in Logwood which also picked up some blue. Love it. Next to it is a not so successful clamped and dyed in indigo which I scrunch wrapped on a pole and overdyed.
  4. The next piece is the chiffon scarf from my first day which I arashi wrapped and redyed.
  5. Next, on the top, is a folded and clamped piece in which I used a piece of rusty metal. In the next closeup, you can see some rust that migrated to the fabric. Under that is a chiffon scarf that I folded in triangles and arashi wrapped on a pvc pipe.
  6. In the last row is a coffee filter with the same triangle fold and arashi wrap. Under it is a piece from the first day that got lost!!

Here is the close-up of the work above:


Here is the rusted piece. You have to look closely to see the little rusted dots.


These two pieces had the same treatment with very different results because of the difference in the fibers.


Here are 3 more pieces from Friday:


  1. On the left is a piece of silk/cotton blend that has been arashi wrapped. I should have dipped it a few more times to get a stronger color on the overlapped section.
  2. Upper right is a piece from the first day that was over dyed. It is the damask fabric which I folded and clamped with 3 bag clips. I really love it now.
  3. The bottom right is that piece of June Underwood fabrid that I folded on the diagonal. This time I folded and clamped it with circles. I used canning jar lids and some round wooden pieces I found at the college.

Here is a closeup of those moons. I love them.


Look at these beautiful pieces done by Susan. She is a landscape designer who just moved back to the Northwest from Maine. She dyed the fabric in onion skin and Queen Ann’s Lace first. Then, she did dips in the big pot of indigo, dipping it deeper each time to get the gradation. I think these panels are pure genius!!


That is it for today. I’ll be back tomorrow with the final reveal. Tomorrow, I am getting my hair colored and cut and then I have to get back to work on the Japanese Garden stuff.

P.S. – I just did a Firefox spell check on this document and it says that I have too many suspicious words!!

Indigo Moons

Saturday, July 28th, 2007

What a difference a day makes. I came home today, full of energy. I took Maggie for a long walk after I rinsed out the days dyeing and threw it in the washer. I made a fabulous dinner of grilled pork loin, roasted butternut squash, steamed haricot verts and a yummy Asian slaw. Then I ironed my fabric, photographed it and stitched some pieces for tomorrow. I am woman; hear me roar.

Look at these gorgeous pieces done by a class member who is a weaver. They are woven of some unusual fibers. The one on the left is bamboo and the one in the center is soy. On the bamboo piece, she wove in a yarn that was pulled and tied to create the pattern. The second one was simply knotted in 3 places and the third was arashi wrapped on a pole. That is Judyleigh, our instructor.


I dyed some of my silk/cotton blend in brazilwood with an alum mordant. I really love this reddish color. I am going to do some more tomorrow.


Here is most of today’s work. I was in to lines and circles today.


Left to right:

  1. cotton, accordion pleated and tied with a one inch ribbon at four intervals
  2. cotton, arashi wrapped on a pvc pipe.
  3. cotton, folded and clamped with various circles as resists.


Left to right:

  1. pleated silk chiffon, folded and clamped with circles
  2. cotton/silk folded and clamped with various circles.
  3. dupioni silk, tied and dyed in logwood with an alum mordant. A really wonderful purple
  4. silk charmeuse scarf stitched and pressed vertically then stitched horizontally and pressed — shibori plaid (on sewing machine)
  5. silk organza, folded and clamped with metal washers.

I am getting so much out of this class that I can transfer to my procion dyeing. There are 8 of us in the class and only 3 are quilters. It is quite interesting to see what the others are doing.

Aerobic Shibori

Friday, July 27th, 2007

I am a very tired old lady tonight. I had a marathon dyeing day with the big old natural indigo pot. Here it is being readied for the day’s activities. The sludge which lies on the top has to be removed and saved to be put back in at the end.


Here is one of the pvc pipes with an arashi wrap that has been dyed in the big pot.


Imagine a pole a couple of inches wider that that one and about 5 feet tall which is what I use to wrap a large silk charmeuse scarf. Silk requires several dips in the pot and then oxidation in between. While this gigantic pole is in the pot, it must be held so that it does not touch the bottom where it will disturb the sludge that develops over time. I think I dipped it about 10 -12 times. Here is the resulting scarf hanging to dry. It is the large scarf on the left.


I did several other pieces and pulled the threads on some pieces that I made yesterday. I am just too pooped to take photos so you will have to wait. Here is my old lime green t-shirt transformed, however.


We could only use the natural indigo until 2 pm and then we had to put the scum back in and add some lime to bring it back to life and then it needs to rest overnight. Here it is all bubbling and full of life. The slimy stuff is called the flower.


This is a college level class for which one can get credit and so a final project is expected. That is to be our work for the next two days. I am one of those follow the rules kinda people so when asked what I would do for the project, I proposed dyeing fabric to make a bog coat. It is a patternless, kimono like coat. I left class early to come home and prepare some fabric. To be honest, I ran out of gas and don’t have the energy to do it. Instead, I am just gonna keep dyeing scarves and making fabric which I can use in quilts.

I thought this was a cool site – the indigo gloves.


Shibori for Sure

Thursday, July 26th, 2007

First of all, where is everyone? Did you all go on vacation at once and you didn’t let me know? Yesterday, was my first post without a single comment, since I can’t remember.

On with the photos from my fantastic shibori class. Here is class work from yesterday. We are all discovering the elusiveness of indigo. It can get too much oxygen and become “tired.” Then you have to add more indigo and warm water and let it rest for a while. It is also important to soak the pieces in warm water to get a better penetration of the indigo.



Here is some stitching that I did on some linen. Al the stitches have to be pulled up tight and tied off. This piece is still drying so that it will be easier to remove the stitches


Yesterday, we used synthetic indigo and today we mixed up a batch of natural indigo. It comes in a lump that has to be ground to a powder.


Here is the work that I brought home to wash and dry.


The upper left is linen that was folded and ironed and clamped with wooden triangles. the one next to is is a previously folded and dyed piece that I got from June Underwood. I folded this on the diagonal first then folded it in the other direction and clamped it with rectangle wood pieces. The top row of reddish pink pieces are dupioni silk dyed in Brazilwood with different mordants — copper, rust and alum/ I have no idea which is which. The bottom pieces were dyed in logwood. The smaller indigo piece is one of the dupioni pieces from yesterday that I overdyed by scrunching it on a pvc pole. The first of the longer pieces is a chiffon scarf that was folded in triangles and then wrapped on a pvc pipe with string — arashi shibori. The next piece was a very ugly lime green chiffon scarf on which a batiked image did not show up very well. I wrapped and scrunched it on a pvc pipe and I really like it now. The last piece is silk organza that is done arashi style — wrapped on a large pvc pipe then wrapped with string. Here are the arashi pieces waiting to be dyed.


Tonight I am going to prepare the scarf in the background for overdyeing by wrapping it arashi style.

Here are some closeups of today’s work that are clickable for larger views.

indigolinencloseup.jpg indigoscargcloseups.jpg naturaldyes.jpg