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oh, so slowly!

July 31, 2019

 inching forward at a snail’s pace

searching through the handspun stash, at the back of the cupboard, I found a large skein of fine wool singles

spun several years ago and dyed with mahonia berries (a rosy brown)

hiding with it was a bag of flax a guild member gifted me several years ago

so – I plied the wool and spun and plied the flax

and warped the backstrap loom ready for August’s challenge

more linesy-woolsey

the indigo fruit vat is working well

I pole wrapped a small (7″ X 11″) square of wool felt and spent the better part of a day dyeing it

8 dips lasting 8-10 minutes and aired 30+ minutes between each dip

approximately 5 hours!

a school of minnows in an indigo sea

in the dyeing process the wool shrinks and the finished piece has a wonderful texture

(this is more pronounced when dyed in a hot water bath)

now what to do with this scrap??

blue is calling to me

the boro kimono tapestry needed a frame – indigo and kakishibu – with lots of stitching

the tapestry on the loom is slowly inching up – weaving it sideways

I simmered the birch bark for a couple hours, added more bark and left it to soak for approx. 10 days

simmered it for another 2 1/2 hours, added 1 skein of alum mordanted wool leaving the bark in the bath

simmered for 2 hours and left overnight

a lot of work for light yellow/beige

guess if you live in the woods and really want to use local materials this could be an option

you could use it for a tannin but natural yellows are abundant

the internet shows soft pinks – not from this birch

think I’m going to fly away

 

 

4 Comments leave one →
  1. August 1, 2019 3:17 am

    You’re engaging in slow work, which accounts or the snail’s pace–none of these lovely processes can be rushed! I agree about the birch–a *lot* of work for that low-key color. The school of minnows, on the other hand–well worth the time spent!

    Like

    • August 1, 2019 9:05 am

      Kerry – natural dyeing is like that – a lot of yellows and beige, I won’t be doing birch bark again. Indigo is always rewarding.

      Like

  2. July 31, 2019 11:32 pm

    I love that little piece of indigo. It’s the sort of thing I’d squirrel away and stroke occasionally till the perfect use arrived.

    Like

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