Survey says……


In response to Shiborigirl‘s challenge to try to figure out or replicate this pattern, I decided to start simple.

Rows spaced half an inch apart, half inch stitches, off set each row by half an inch. I knew looking at the original fabric this wouldn’t get the same pattern- but it could be a jumping off point. About 3/4 of the way down the fabric- trying to sketch the stitch lines and lining up quilting rulers to make sure the off set was correct (and frequently winding up with wonky lines) it occurred to me that drawing an actual grid would have been a helluva lot easier.

So would have been doing this without trying to watch Deadliest Catch at the same time.

Anyhoo, onward we go.

Started with this (stitched ever so carefully on the bus yesterday)

Mokume stitches on 50/50 linen cotton

Pulled the strings tight.
Then immersion dyed in dark green mx dye bath, probably swishing too much,

and got this

Green challenge fabric opened up

Clearly, not what it was supposed to be.

Things I know:

I need better thread. I’ve been using nylon coats and clark thread for the silk tying. But it is not thick enough for using with this fabric I don’t think. Or maybe I just need something less slippery. I had a hard time tying the threads tight enough to get clear resist. In digging through a box of samples that I’d done, I realized I had tried this technique a few years ago- before I really started getting into dyeing. I had used a heavier weight “thread of unknown origin” that had been in my grandmothers stash of sewing/craft supplies. It was the perfect weight for that- there were threads still in there, and I remember the cone it was on. I also remember chucking it when the basement flooded 2 years ago.

I think I over swished (agitated) in the dye bath.

Not entirely sure that original fabric did get immersed. Not even sure it was mokume.

So I will think about this some more and try again on the weekend, after I get the veggies in the garden.

And I will chuck that green dye stock, it seems shot anyways, and it’s a really icky color.

2 thoughts on “Survey says……

  1. hey teegee!
    we do think alike dont we? I ended up trying upholstery thread, its strong and ties a nice fat knot that won’t pull through the fabric
    I think you got nice results from the immersion dyeing… I used fiber reactives (tried thickened and unthickened) and painted them on
    and the unthickened ones blew out the pattern totally.
    I definately see pieces of the inspiration pattern in yours. Thank for putting me on your blog roll you are going on mine too

  2. good to see you got started here. i agree that it really is important what thread you use to stitch with as you really need something strong to pull the threads up VERY tightly. that is often where i have trouble. knots popping through the fabric, or i’m simply unable to pull hard enough with out breaking the thread. hope you added this to the flickr pool.

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