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Some natural dyeing and printing results

After my experimentation with some old op shop cottons and linens which had been soy mordanted a while ago, I got some muddy colours and very little print.

The red flowered gum leaves, blossoms and nuts gave a good coloured dye after cooking for an hour and then leaving for 24 hours. I strained the plant material from the water, added some alum to the pot, soaked the cottons in water for an hour and then bundled up. The cottons and a couple of scrap pieces of bridal satin were used with the leaves from the pot, some melaleuca sprigs and some eucalyptus cineria that had been soaked in rainwater. Some of the cooked leaves were dipped in iron water, most of the bundles were tied with silk tape around bamboo sticks, two were bundled around iron rods.

IMG_9273

After reading Irit Dulman’s latest blog post I will try a bit more experimentation this week-thank you Irit for sharing some of your processes, we would love to see you in Australia!

I am thinking now of dyeing my upcycled linen dress in onion skins first and then try the overprint with the leaves. I will do a few more samples and see how they turn out before committing to the dress.

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Onions skins and bark cooking

I will pop a few pieces in the pot tomorrow.

 

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October 1, 2017 at 9:13 pm Leave a comment

Printing, marbling, felting & more-a catch up

We have had some great plays on fabric recently at our GeeTAG group. Our fifth Saturday play day at Shearer’s Arms studio has enabled us to spend extended time on messy play. At our April messy day we tried lino and meat tray prints, stencilling using brusho, printing with a variety of materials, marbling on fabric, flour paste resist and a technique using textas and methylated spirits to colour fabric.

Printing, stencilling & colouring

My marbled fabric, centre bottom, was a little grainy as it was the first pull of the ink off the carrageenan. After a couple of prints the clarity improved. The flour paste resist is something I will experiment with more (right top) and the top left was our regular Saturday meeting, topic: Stitch on paper, where we made paper fabric using a variety of papers pasted onto calico. I also aged my paper with a few dabs of walnut ink when I got home.

Nuno felting

Our March meeting was nuno felting and I made the piece above for the front cover of my book, the 2017 “Choose your own adventure’ project for GeeTAG. I have just dyed some more fleece in walnut ink to make another piece for the back cover.

Auditioning threads

Above you can see a glimpse of the gum nut panel I have been working on for Dijanne Cevaal’s ‘Aussie Bush’ project. I have added some organza over the design, framed it with some of my natural dyed, printed silk, FME’d and will add some hand stitch elements. I dyed some silk in walnut ink for the binding but it is not as dark as I would like so I may re-immerse that again to get a nice dark frame for the work.

May 28, 2017 at 1:24 pm Leave a comment

Messy printing day

This year in our GeeTAG group we decided to take advantage of the months which had 5 Saturdays and designate them as messy offsite days. Earlier in the year Kerrie mentored a group in a wonderful eco dyeing and printing day and on the 5th Saturday in October we offered a messy printing day at the Shearer’s Arms Gallery studio. This is a fabulous space to ‘get down and dirty’ with paints, something we cannot do in the pristine room we normally use for our monthly meetings.

Many of our group lugged numerous items along for a day of experimenting and playing with prints. It was great to have a day to print uninterrupted by the normal duties of family life and be inspired by my fellow printers, who shared and discussed all ideas freely. There is a write up and photos of many of our results n the GeeTAG blog.

I experimented with the Gelli plate and hot glue gun stencils, creating paper and fabric prints, experimented with circles of all types to create a ‘doodle cloth’ on a cotton cloth from the Op Shop (I may use this for embroidering TAST stitches), and trying out a few of the blocks from other participants.

Glue gun prints, a borrowed block print-printed twice to give the layered image, stencilled image using part of a plastic doily over a mop up cloth:

Printing Day

Backgrounds created from the gelli plate, various objects printed and stencilled, glue gun stencils used as resist with spray paints:

Printing experiments

Overall a fun and successful day of printing.

November 5, 2016 at 5:24 pm 2 comments

Guess who we ran into at an exhibition

Yesterday I made the train trek to Melbourne, ran into a fellow traveller Rhonda at Flinders St station, then continued onward along the Sandringham line to Middle Brighton. After a sustaining coffee and raw brownie/banana bread we continued on to the gallery at Brighton Town Hall for the Annemeike Mein exhibition, where we encountered Stella, who joined us to marvel at the amazing textile artworks. Like most textile art, you really do have to see these artworks ‘up close and personal’ to appreciate their texture, colour, artistry and skill.

Although there are a limited number of her artworks exhibited, it was interesting to see the development of Annemeike’s work over the years, both in theme and materials. It was also quite wonderful to see the trialling and the stages of development of the work also displayed.

We were just standing discussing the differences in the free machine embroidery of Annemeike in comparison to the intensive work of Alison Holt (who Stella and I both have worked with in workshops) when guess who we spied, Alison herself! We had a chat to the wonderful, artistic and very friendly Alison about the where, what and why of her latest trip to Australia and then, of course, couldn’t miss the photo opportunity!

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Alison Holt in Melbourne

After a lovely lunch in the beautiful sunshine, Stella left for the city and Rhonda and I went for a walk and a little op shopping in Church St, followed by a walk to the beach and the famous Brighton bath houses.

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There were many locals and tourists taking advantage of the beautiful spring weather.brighton

A beautiful day out, thank you for your wonderful company ladies!

 

 

November 5, 2016 at 4:09 pm Leave a comment

What a difference a day makes

On our walk yesterday the beach looked like this:

stick

And this morning the floodwaters flowing from the river had turned the water a murky brown with lots of slush:

beach-2

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I am still adding TAST stitches to my postcard box, here is beaded looped cretan and buttonhole wheel cup:

cherub

And I am looking forward to a weekend of stitching with Hazel Blomkamp from South Africa, followed by some tambour beading over the next two weeks with Jan Timms from the UK.

September 22, 2016 at 5:19 pm Leave a comment

Beachcombing for eco dyeing

Our dog loves a walk on the beach and lately there has been a lot of seaweed washing up.

I decided to have a go at some eco dyeing following a suggestion by India Flint to try using seawater as a mordant.

I took some pieces of silk and linen down with me to dunk in the sea and collected a little of the many varieties of seaweed that had washed up on the beach. I found the best imprint were from the less fleshy types. I also bundled up some of the cards I had received from India from her latest project.

I decided to try steaming the bundles for an hour or two first (just using boiled water in the bottom of the pot) and then left the bundles (but not the paper one) sitting in the dye water overnight. I also used an old bolt tied into one of the bundles which may have helped to strengthen the result.

The effects were some great prints and textures, and a distinctly sea smell. Some of these will be finding their way into a book I am making for the ATASDA annual exhibition at the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney in May.

Wrapped sea parcels

Wrapped sea parcels

From the sea

From the sea

Seacoprints

Seacoprints

Bolt marks and the more subtle reverse

Bolt marks and the more subtle reverse

 

February 22, 2016 at 11:36 pm 1 comment

What I am reading in bed – September

33 artists book

And the recipients should have received their ATCs for August. The theme was ‘chair’. I took my inspiration from a sketch of a peacock chair. The background is colour washed inktense sticks and the chair was FME using two colours of metallic thread, charcoal and a silver on top. I love the illuminations black jewel metallics which I bought from the Thread studio, they have great depth of colour.

Peacock chair 2

September 11, 2015 at 9:22 am 2 comments

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