Trouble shooting Maki-age

7 October 2007

I’m not happy with these:


These are two Maki-age samples that I made for my jackets last winter.  Thery are done on a gauzy silk noil.  It was dyed with Lanaset dyes the neutral color I call Rose-gold  after the metal.  Then I stitched and bound my shapes and dyed it a grey in a Lanaset immersion bath.  Now I have pink and lavender blue (having to do with the juxtaposition of the two neutral colors).  Most of the maki-age we have seen is just one color, such as indigo, on white/natural.  By adding a color before making the resists a degree of complexity has been added to the design.  Also I find white a hard color to work with and make interesting combinations since no other color has a similar value (luminosisty).  I do like dk. indigo and white but not all the time.

Inspecting of the motifs, one can see the needle holes  near the bottom edge of the right motif and the stitch resist at the edge is well defined.  However the edges of the motif, espcially at the arrows  there are areas where the grey dye did not penetrate well.    The two motifs are less than an inch apart and when both motifs are gathered  the cloth in this area is all bunched together and yet it is supposed to dye.   To get the dye to penetrate well in these jammed up places you have to work the cloth in the dyebath.  That means that while dyeing, the sooner the better, put on your gloves, put your hands in the dyebath and move that cloth around, pushing up down parts with your fingers, and down parts up.  Swish it around in the dyepot and then do it again, rearranging the gathers that have formed in the background.  My goal is to get the grey right up to the resists created by the stitches.  This gives the best definition to the stitches to my eye.

In the lower left corner there is an unintentional tail on the motif.  WhenI tied the gathering stiches I must have caught a little bit of cloth here that then got bound up.  I’ve gotten in the habit of checking as I gather and after that all the cloth that should be up in the poof is up and the rest is down.   It is quite common for a little bit of cloth that should be up to stick a little toe down and visa versa.  Anyone who has sewn a gathered skirt to a waistband knows how easy it is to have the gathers catch a bit in the wrong place.  Anyhow checking and rearranging the gathers before you tie off can help avoid this. 

I made a jacket in March  with a collection of these motifs, got the space between the motifs well dyed and no little bits of cloth in the wrong position and then cutting the threads I got this



  a tiny, tiny hole.  A hole none the less!



One Response to “Trouble shooting Maki-age”

  1. Rebecca Jones Says:

    Thanks for posting the troubleshooting page! It is nice to learn about all the work that goes into your beautiful pieces, and that even the most skilled of artists make mistakes.


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