Capped shibori

13 July 2006

Capped shibori is one of the simplest types of shibori to do. No specialized tools are needed and it works with many types of weaves; open gauzy ones or dense tight one like fuji broadcloth or bridal satin ( all silk, since that is what I work with mostly). Simple technique does not mean only simple designs, design is controlled by the vision of the designer.
It occurs as little birds in this traditional Japanese kimonoploverkimono.jpg
and is the basis of a Itchiku Tsujigahana as executed by the late Itchiku Kuobta in his magnificant Landscape Kimonos.kubota.jpg
This is a T-shirt I did on our Dye Day.

The design needs to be a closed shape like a circle, a square, a jigsaw puzzle piece… You stitch around the shape starting and stopping in the same place. I chose a crescent shape inspired by some Turkish Garments we saw at a museum in DC. This is not a simple shape, the narrow points of the crescent will present problems and getting the missing circle to dye the background color will be a challenge.
Here I am tracing the design from the paper underneath to the T-shirt with a fugitive pen.
Then with a long double thread you stitch around the shape finishing back where you started.
When all the shapes are stitched you gather them up. The center of the gathered shape forms a poof (highly technical term). Here are the 3 poofs formed by gathering the crescents.
The trick here is to get all the cloth you want to protect UP into the poof and all the cloth you want to dye, like the circle between the two points of the crescent, DOWN. This is the hard step. When all the cloth is in its proper place you pull the stitching thread tight and turn it over. You are looking to see if the gathers close up or leave a little hole in the center. If there is a hole you need to stop it up or the dye will enter thru this backdoor. Here I have inserted half a cork in each shape.
3 corks.jpg
You can also see the small poof of cloth between the points of the crescent that are down to dye. Pull the stitching thread tight against the cork and tie off.
Now on the right side top side the poofs formed by the body of the crescent are covered with a piece of plastic bag and tied on top of the stitching line.
3 caps.jpg
I gather up the ends of the plastic and tie it out of the way so that it won’t interfere with the dye dye reaching the parts of the background right next to the crescent.
Here they are with their updo’s ready to dye.
capped poofs.jpg
I dyed these in a immersion dye bath of a fiber reactive dye, Cibacron F, DOS 3%, Orange (gold 75%, fuchsia 25%). The shirt was removed from the dye bath rinsed and spun out the washed with hot water all in the washing machine. When the shirt emerged from the washing machine you could see the white poofs inside the plastic.
dyed poofs.jpg
Clearly the string I used was cotton because it is now orange. I carefully removed the ties and stitching to reveal the design.
It is easy to cut the cloth when removing the threads and ties.
dyed motif.jpg
Clearly it is hard to keep the points of the crescent white and the space inside them orange. I love the complexity given to these simple shapes by the fuzzy edges of the shibori. This crescent shape might work better on a large scale. Here is the finished shirt.


3 Responses to “Capped shibori”

  1. Entwinements, a shibori blog

    I found a blog last week that I’ve been meaning to write about but I just couldn’t figure out where to start with it. The first descriptive that comes to mind is “an amazing display of intellectual generosity” but that…


  2. kate Says:

    I love the cresent shirt and I think that I might try that, One day when I get back to the dye pot.


  3. Olive Says:

    Where can I find more information about dying leather in a tie dye of shibori method? Which type of dyes will work without heat setting that are not hazardous? Have you tried this on deerskin?
    Thank you


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