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decisions

August 13, 2012

this is a warp to experiment with and play on

at some point decisions have to be made

indigo dyed handspun ramie singles – looks good – but I need a rest from BLUE

kakishibu dyed 2 ply shifu and ramie – a little too heavy, it distorts the pattern – it was the one I really wanted

paper moire yarn from Habu Textiles plyed with handspun cotton – nice texture

handspun silk singles dyed with my home-grown madder

???

there are more choices waiting in the stash

indigo ramie, the paper moire, recycled blue jeans handspun fibre plyed with cotton

kaki shifu, handspun cotton plyed with reeled silk, 2 ply handspun hemp dyed with walnut husks

this is the second year I’ve been weaving almost exclusively from “the stash”

I found this 2 lb. 3 oz. cone of Bombyx noil silk boucle -whooee!  It’s years old, probably couldn’t afford it now

I wound off 3 skeins and dyed it with indigo

it soaked up the dye – back to blue – can’t seem to escape

 gromwell root ( Lithospermum erythrorhizon ), another of the old natural dyes reported to be temperamental, difficult to dye with and non-light fast

it gives purple or murasaki. In the Nara and Heian periods the colour was reserved for Imperial ladies

this piece caught my eye when the “indigo sisters” were shopping in Tokyo. At first I had a much larger piece until Bryan pointed out the price, I took it’s smaller cousin.

the price tag is still on, I can’t believe I paid that much for a hole-y, faded bit of cotton

it’s a treasure, look at the shibori! I’ll find a nice place for it out of strong light

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14 Comments leave one →
  1. August 13, 2012 2:48 pm

    oh delicious delicious!!!!! and then on top of it all gromwell. do you have a source for seed?? tatiana ginsberg says it will grow here!

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    • August 13, 2012 4:17 pm

      Velma – I’ve never grown it and don’t know where to get the seed, maybe that should be a project!

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      • August 13, 2012 5:21 pm

        i tried and tried a couple of years ago and couldn’t source it. there are lots of gromwells, but getting the japanese one proved difficult (japanese name and the latin all got difficult for me, here, in the eastern u.s.)

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      • August 13, 2012 6:25 pm

        Velma – I know what you mean, the latin is very confusing and there are several very different gromwells. I’ll put it on my shopping list for the next visit to Japan – don’t I wish! can you use it to make paper or do you want it as a dye?

        Renee – the paper is just too thick for the warp and when off the loom will buckle and ripple. I could dye some of my handspun shifu and it would be finer – onward!

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  2. August 13, 2012 4:39 pm

    First, love the stash! And you working from it must be so satisfying.
    Second, I just recently got into the idea of a sampling of stuff to see how I want it to look. So this was an interesting insight into your process. Can I say that I like the distorted pattern the best? It stands out…draws my eye. Don’t think that is what you were looking for though was it?

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  3. August 13, 2012 8:28 pm

    You have such beautiful muted colours, Jean. I love the weaving design too. Got your disc of photos today, thanks.

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  4. Kathy permalink
    August 13, 2012 10:20 pm

    Carrie is excited to come and weave with you on Sunday, but do you have any yellow for her to work with? It is her favourite colour once again. 🙂

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  5. August 14, 2012 2:36 am

    the prices i paid for textiles while in japan!!i still look at them and my eyes gleam.
    the yarns are mouth watering,the murasaki cloth divine.
    and dyeing with shikon can be a bit finicky though nothing compared to ai.

    Like

    • August 14, 2012 7:41 am

      Neki – in 1987, at the Kyoto markets, you could buy a kimono for the price of a tiny scrap now

      Kathy – 3 weeks ago it was pink, that’s why the pink warp. see you on Sun.

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  6. August 14, 2012 3:27 am

    jean-gromwell for dye. don’t know about paper…

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  7. Judith permalink
    August 14, 2012 8:56 am

    Looking at your stash items makes me think that I need to really be ruthless with my own stash. Your stash is full of little worksof art. Mine is a little too full of too many irrisistable bargins. Time for a stash cleanse!

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    • August 14, 2012 9:19 am

      Judith – I learned to say “NO” some time ago to those odd bits of stash stuff, not enough shelf space and I keep creating more and more handspun. I think it is neverending

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  8. August 14, 2012 8:22 pm

    this is so rich–I love the textures, the colors

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