Monday, May 3, 2010

red and blue on the same day

this ones roots are safe from me
red trails-or are they rivers?
put in dry, long soaks in the vat, washed many times...yes, the smell does go away. 2 dips. you can see the top of Helen Melvins "The Colour of Sea and sky" which has been a great help in the indigo venture, along with J. Liles "The Art and Craft of Natural Dyeing"
my bundles warming up on the corner of the veranda
eucalyptus leaves shadows. I like this. I wish I left them longer
more prints on the bundle with the madder root. they were not left long enough to develop. they will probably get an ironwater treatment. and I don't know what gave the green...I'll turn into a meticulous notetaker yet
the madder in a jar with water. it is fermenting visibly after 24hrs
anthemis tinctoria, the green is overdyed with poppy iceflower,underneath all pomegranate rind warp yarn
bark soaking for the next round
while peeking into a bundle, impatient as always, I got a surprise.
deep lovely red
the bundle was hastily unbundled, and it was true..the orange root of madder gave me a deep red
I;ve been bundling up pieces of my pomegranate cloth, with leaves and metals
I simmered them in eucalyptus bark dyebath with more rusty nails, they are a very satisfactory black colour, now they are stewing in the very hot sun
there are coins in there as well, and some of the bundle cores are copper pipes, people just throw them out.
I have never been given red from madderroot before, and I am very excited
this madder was collected on May 1 in Varnavas, next village up, and it grows in very different conditions than it does here, in Grammatiko. I found it near a path in the forest where there is a lot of water, and the soil was moist, at places saturated with water. these were young roots, I didn't have a digging tool with me, so I just dug in a little bit and pulled out some intensely orange coloured roots, thin ones
I believe the preparation of the cloth has been very important. They have been scoured with caustic soda and lots of olive oil soap, which may have acted as the rancid oil of old.
it has been premordanted in succesive dips of wood ash lye and soya milk, and then dyed in pomegranate rind soup, cold
1st note to prospective dyer: Prepare, prepare, prepare. it is certainly worth it
a few remarks
my water is hard. very hard.
soya milk is fantastic. it is worth getting good quality beans.
sit on your hands. let those bundles age.
as long as possible.
keep notes on process. I may want to try to do it again
it feels like a gift from the land

the technique of bundling up plant matter is from India Flints " eco colour", a book which has led me to many a joyous dyeing experience. I am grateful to india for publishing this book. It s place is by my bed, and even just reading it gives me much enjoyment.

and the blue

yayyy again! I am dancing with joy
my urine vat is getting there! smelly, ammoniacal, ph over 9, sitting in the sun all day long, it has not been lazy at all. the indigo is reducing, it is dyeing strips of cotton , and yesterday it was washfast
I am so excited that my mind is running around itself trying to decide what to do first


Jasmine said...

How exciting. I will have to come and read this again. Beautiful works Manya, just lovely!

Ladka said...

Lovely results of your madder root experimentation! And although it's true the "good old sig vat" smells like hell it gives good colours and goes a long way.

Martine said...

I gues our bedrooms are lookalikes because India's book is on my bedside too. I keep on reading and enjoying it.
For the Indigo i'll have to wait a little longer, its too cold over here.
Enjoy the rainbow Manya.

iNdi@ said...

bless you, my dear.

Manya Maratou said...

to all
I have been preparing some of the canvas like heavy cotton for dyeing, lots of work that is! so this is a hurried thank you note , jasmine, ladka, martine and india, for dropping your kind words.
sometimes I talk to you all in my thoughts, when I see an interesting plant or something exciting happens in the dyepot or when I visited the sheep..
I am blessed

Anneli/Bockfilz said...

It's very exciting to follow your dyeing paths with all its beautiful results - I can feel and share your joy through the posting! Thank you for putting it into words and pictures, Manya!

dorie said...

oh thank you Manya for showing all those beautifull works, the colours, sharing your thoughts! Yes the book of India is like a bible - everytime there is something new in it, the more you practise, the more details I understand. I also like the things you're doing with the weaving. I have seen others and it is very attemting to do it too, but I don't want to be mixed up with to many projects. Happy dyeing!

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