She Dyed…

“No WAY!”  you say?

“Yes Way!”  I say.

I did, and I have proof, that indeed, I spent the afternoon rocking out with Gaelic Storm’s new album, in my basement, mixing and concocting, and soaking and rinsing.

Behold, the wrinkled, not quite ready for primetime, but sort of pretty nonetheless, batch of scarves I did today.

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They may not be colors for everyone, but I am finding, as I usually do at this time of year, a yearning for the colors of autumn.

Subdued, warm, looking like the sound of crunching leaves, but light enough to still feel like summer heat.

They should be up in the shop by tomorrow.

(and for anyone keeping count, which is probably only me…. that was a seven week hiatus from dyeing things.  Let’s not let that happen again, shall we?)

All is not lost…

After the “weekend of stupid mistakes” I thought I’d soothe my soul with a little “abstract” batik. Sometimes it’s nice to just throw some wax. Splatter, dribble, brush, and yes throw the wax. My basement wall is a mess now :-)

I was starting to pontificate over how I’ve come around to liking art that isn’t just the realist painters, and so on, but it was getting too heady and stuffy sounding. Dang it, I just like color. And sometimes it’s just fun to play with color in whatever way strikes you. Monday, I just wanted to play with the colors, and see what happened. The result is below.

There was a vague plan for this scarf. It’s a little lighter than what I wanted, but that’s because I accidentally baked it. Etsy friends….see thread here. And clearly- it didn’t burn. I think the smell was the wax. I also don’t think the oven was on as long as I thought. Anyhoo… here’s the blue version : (The light is not great, I haven’t really futzed around with color correction because I wasn’t shooting this for the shop. Just to share with you all.)

Blue Batik Scarf

And all stretched out:

Blue Batik detail

I had fun. There was ego soothing over my public goofing up my other scarf with such newbie type mistakes. This one didn’t get burnt to a crisp. (though it was pretty dark when I unwrapped it). Happy little dyer I am! Sometimes it’s just fun to throw some wax.

Cherry blossoms, Part 2: uh-oh

Let me preface this next post with:

While I’m not a lifelong dyer, I have been doing this long enough and intensely enough over the last few years that the mistakes that are about to play out were pretty dumb. As much I’d like to blame it on the late night, which is the only time I can really work on these things, this really was more a combination of impatience, inattention to detail, and yeah, alot of fatigue.

Okay, that said…onward to the branch disaster… (if you haven’t- read the post that leads up to this here: )

The scarf was batiked, and the background sprayed with pale to deep rosey pink dye. Since it is silk, I’m sticking with acid processing. Sounds scary but it just means the PH of the dye is acidic -I use citric acid crystals. There were 2 colors of concentrated dye stock, and a big bottle of acidic water for me to mix them with. When steamed, it will render the colors permanent.

For the branches, I grab bottle of black silk dye. I have used this kind of dye with the other backgrounds before, and it has worked fine, since it is essentially an acid dye. I dilute the black, do a few test strokes on some other silk, and I’m good to go.

Cherry Blossom scarf

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