The indigo dye process is a very natural organic experience, where the dye vats are treated with reverence as living things, and care must be taken not to unbalance the indigo brew. Its a slow dyeing process from preparation of the vats, washing and mordanting the fabric, manipulating the fabric with stitches, knots and folds, then the dyeing and post-dye treatments - rinsing, washing and setting.
It was a pleasurable process in a peaceful country setting with friends and gorgeous alpacas. And being the paper-obsessed person that I am, I was able to dye some paper as well.
|The Indigo Vat, complete with the indigo 'flower'|
which indicates a healthy vat
|Jenai and Nicky unravelling Nicky's scarf|
after dipping in the vat, oxygenating the fabric so the
dye turns its wonderful blue colour
|This is a t-shirt I concertina folded then bound. |
This photo shows it after a dip in the indigo vat.
|The finished t-shirt, the top of it was dyed without folding.|
I love the pattern the bundling created.
Easy for me too as it didn't involve stitching!
|A close-up of the bundling pattern, you can|
see the string marks.
|Dyeing some paper|
|The paper drying, the bubbles from the surface of the vat|
created beautiful patterns. I'll print onto these.
|A silk scarf that I indigo dyed over top of|
some eco-dyeing that I did.
The circle patterns were made with glass beads
and chick peas secured with rubber bands.
|Everyone admiring our combined indigo handiwork.|
|And the Alpacas - the little brown one was born|
whilst we did the workshop. Too cute!