Wednesday, June 1, 2016

First indigo attempt

I recently attended a play day with several of my creative friends.  The day was spent dipping fabric into an indigo vat, and a pot of boiling water with potassium permangenate.  I had prepared my fabric in various ways to create "resists".  Some were tightly stitched, some tightly wrapped with thread, and still others clamped.  I didn't think to take pictures prior to dyeing, but here are some of the results.
This one was pinched in the centre, threaded through a wooden "donut", and then loosely wrapped with string at two different intervals.
This one, dipped into the potassium permangenate, was folded into a triangle of several layers and clamped with wooden "petals".  Some of the wooden petals had previously been used in another dye vat, hence the hints of violet in the patterning.
 This piece was the easiest.  Folded accordion style lengthwise and then folded again crosswise, half of the piece was dipped into potassium permangenate, while the other half was dipped into indigo.
 Ahhh!  this one looked quite comical after prepping.  Pinching the fabric and wrapping the resulting "peak" very tightly with string is what created the circular pattern.  If you click the picture, you should be able to get a closer look and see the imprint of the string in the radial spokes of the circles.
This one was stitched in several rows of running stitch and tightly drawn together and tied off.  It looked like a flattened and squished furnace filter prior to dipping into the indigo.
I even managed to dye some thread.  I learned that if you want an even colouring, you can't twist the thread, but rather have it loosely held together.  Regardless, I liked the variegated look of the threads which will incorporate well when stitched into the fabric.

Overall, for a first attempt, I was thrilled with the results.  Now its off to the studio again to work on another project.

Till the next time, thanks for visiting.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Gypsy Wife coming along

I have been working along on a pattern call the Gypsy Wife by Jen Kingwell.   You can read an interview with Jen here.  I thought the pattern was relatively new but this pattern has been around for a while (since at least 2014) and there have been several quilt-alongs.  No matter...I've been enjoying the construction of the quilt and rather than use random scraps as depicted on the cover of the pattern book, I've been working with a blue and orange colour palette.
Quite a number of the fabrics are from my stash, but then there are some new ones added in for a bit of spice.  This is what I've managed thus far.
The quilt is sewn in sections and there are two more sections to go.  The last two sections (which are missing right now) will show more orange striping in the background and merge together in the middle of the top.  I'm hoping the transition from blue to orange in the background will be more noticeable when the top is complete.

Till the next time.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Filling the well

I'm sure that each of you out there have at one time or another run into a void of inspiration, or just plain silence from your muse.  That's when it's time to consider "filling the well" as I call it.

Until recently it seemed inspiration and creativity had taken a holiday.  No amount of fabric fondling, picture taking, magazine perusing was helping.   I couldn't stand it so decided to wander the internet to see if something out there would help.  I came across several suggestions relating to sketchbooks.  Ah yes, but where does one start and what should I put into a sketchbook.  This is where Dionne Swift's online class "Developing Sketchbooks" came to the rescue.  She told us it was time to play. area set up

Next, play with paint, stencils, sponges, charcoal, whatever.

There were more pages, but those are just a few that I'm sharing here.  Next using the theme of "circles" we were to mark our painted pages guessed it.....circles!  WHAT??!! mess up my colorful pages?  What the heck....just do it!!!!

 Say these aren't looking too bad.  What do you think?  Oh...that gives me an idea....(look out creativity rut, I've got my groove back!)

Let's see what Dirty Footprints Studio has to offer in their 21 Secrets.