More diapers

14 July 2007

Grace sent two more images of diapers, with more white. I have left the images large so that you can see some of the beauty in the shading, diffusion of the indigo.
diaper 3.JPG


Folding origami is the easy part. Dyeing it is the hard part. Getting dye thru all those layers is the challenge.
Dyes have different ease of penetration. I percieve the penetration to be the highest with fiber reactive dyes , so in order of decreasing penetration

discharge (sulfur dioxide, a gas)
fiber reactives
acid dyes

My theory assumes that larger molecules penetrate less. Even so the book shows that good penetration can be achieved with even indigo. How do they do it?
First they buy ready-to-use indigo in a bottle:
bottled indigo.JPG
Aren’t you a wee bit jealous? I’d love to buy ready-to-use indigo.
Then they place the tied cloth in an appropriately sized plastic bag:
orgami dyeing 1.jpg
Then some ready-to-use indigo is added to the bag:
orgami dyeing 2.JPG
The air and blue indigo are removed from the bag and then the bag is clamped shut. This is the critical step– having the bag totally filled with the indigo bath and no air. Here is another picture of a larger piece: left: expelling the air, right: then clamped.
origami dyeing 3.JPG
Once you have the bag sealed, you can then massage the wad of cloth inside to increase the penetration.
origami dyeing 4.JPG
This way they have achieved good penetration on dense cotton with even indigo.
origami finished.JPG

Umbellas-by the book

9 July 2007

Here is the page on tying umbrellas from the Japanese book that I used as inspiration for these two pieces. You can see the corners folded into the center (top left), insert a chop stick and some suggestions for tying.
All dyeing in the book is done with indigo. Here is a page of their results:
There are 3 variations on a theme on this page, top is a single layer of cloth, middle one has been folded in to the center once and the bottom one has been folded in again. The information is presented graphically and easy to understand.
The chopstick gives one a hard core to use to push the cloth open or pull it closed. A few more choices than with a spider web. Now you have a use for all of those single use chopsticks you get when you eat sushi out. Reuse– do a little part to save the earth.

Humble itajime

7 July 2007

While visiting my friend, Grace, yesterday I took a picture of some Japanese diapers she bought at Sri Threads in the New York City area. This is a narrow cotton sewn into a loop, you can see the seam on the left side.
itajime diaper 1.JPG
And a detail where one sees the gradiation within the design created by the diffusion of the indigo:
itajime diaper 1 detail.JPG
The SRI Threads website is another good place to be inspired by Japanese shibori textiles.

Another attack on getting the dye to penetrate all the layers in a thick stack of cloth created by origami folding. Use open weave cloth. So I’m doing the same folds but with a very porous cloth, silk chiffon, to try to get good penetration. Here you can see how porous the silk is, you can see all the spots on my print table thu’ the chiffon.
origami chiffon 1.jpg
Here I have folded all the corners to the center, forming 2 layers, and you can still see the spots.
origami chiffon 2.jpg
Another set of folds. Now 4 layers of chiffon and you can still see the spots.
origami chiffon 3.jpg
Another set of folds. These did NOT meet neatly in the center. Now with 8 layers it becomes opaque.
origami chiffon 4.jpg
One last set of folds, now 16 layers.
origami chiffon5.jpg
I pressed and basted the folds in place. Then I inserted a chopstick (I have many in the dye studio) and folded the cloth around it like and umbrella. Parts were tied. Some parts can be pushed together to open that area to more dye.
origami chiffon 6.jpg
After soaking in plain water this was dyed in a yellow gold acid dye.
origami chiffon 7.jpg
At the end of that dyebath it looked like this.
origami chiffon 8.jpg
Some ties were taken out and new ones added.
origami chiffon 9.jpg
Then is was dye red with acid dyes.
origami chiffon 10.jpg
After the red dyebath the ties were re-arranged and it was dyed in a blue acid dye bath and looked like this at the end of the dyeing.
origami chiffon 11.jpg
Now to remove all the resists and see what we have.
origami chiffon 12.jpg
The outside, the one exposed to the dye, looks thus:
origami chiffon 14.jpg
I don’t like the undyed cloth in the top right quadrant. The backside looks like so:
origami chiffon 15.jpg
I can see that the blue didn’t make it all the way thru. And all the way open:
origami chiffon 16.jpg
My conclusion is that there are limits to how far the dye will penetrate even a porous cloth.

Origami Shibori

3 July 2007

When I did the recent workshop on Origami shibori with Pat Freiert in St Peter MN the first piece I did was a hemmed thin cotton square she gave us, about 18″. She had Procion MX dyes for us to work with.
folded umbrella.jpg
This is a classic orgami fold: bring all the corners to center.
folded umbrella.1.jpg
Fold all four corners in, and have a new smaller square that is 5 layers.
folded umbrella.2.jpg
Repeat the same folding pattern, bringing the 4 corners to the center,
folded umbrella.3.jpg
So now there are 10 layers of cloth.
folded umbrella.4.jpg
But you can see that it was folded one more time; same fold, bring all the corners to the center.
folded umbrella.5.jpg
So now there are 20 layers and a small square shape.
folded umbrella.6jpg
A chop stick was stuck in the middle of the square and then tied with string much like and umbrella. It was dyed in a aqua immersion dyebath, and then in a purple one. The piece was messaged in the dye bath, before the soda ash was added, to encourage penetration.
The final piece has 13 motifs but some are definitely paler than others. Procion MX is a dye that penetrates deeply but even so the color is not even on all motifs. Next I’ll use a very open weave structure to allow more penetration.

Beyond Itajime

30 June 2007

Back when I was blogging about itajimeI found this image on the internet:
Pretty spectacular! Referred to as a snowflake design. Looks like indigo on natural cotton. But how was it made?
By studing the design you can see how it was folded. The first fold I see is bringing a corner to the center, until the centers of the snowflakes coincide, like so
3508.3 fold .jpg
followed by bringing the other corners to the center. Now all the snowflake motifs are stacked up The piece is now 5 layers thick and looks like this:
3508. 4 folds copy.jpg
It apperars to me that this square was folded to create the spokes. I’ll fold it in half
3508. 5 folds copy.jpg
And then in half again.
3508.6folds copy.jpg
Now I would bring the corners together
And one more fold
3508.8folds copy.
And then the template would be shaped thus:
3508 copy
Easy, Straight forward but we have 80 layers of cloth and they are NOT fan folded. How can you dye 80 layers of cloth, no matter how thin, with indigo. Indigo does not penetrate very far, so it is ideal for beginner shibori. Even a loose fold ia a resist for indigo. How can we over ride this and get all the layers colored? Returning to the topmost image of the snowflakes they all look well dyed, there are no pale copies here.

Here are some samples I made with discharge. The color is nothing special, but I was taking silk out of a box of damaged pieces, color unknown.


21 May 2007

Here is another piece I made at the workshop and forgot to post with the others. It is 22’x 72″. It was a chartruese overdyed with burgandy.


19 May 2007

workshop circle.jpg
This is a piece I made in the workshop in St. Peter MN. Then since I’ve been home I’ve been trying to get a better feeling for the technique. So I’ve tried 3 different silks, with acid dyes. Acid dyes are so easy when you are trying things! Make up a pot of dye, swish the silk around in it until it gets some color, take it out and open it up. See the results now. Leave the pot, Fold another piece, swish it around in the dye bath….
circle X7.jpg
circle X6.jpg
circle X2.jpg
circle X3.jpg
circle X4.jpg
circle X.jpg
circle X5.jpg
Back to the studio!