Notions-Drye Goods Studio Diary

Thanks for checking in. I am a fiber artist. My current emphasis is on eco printing and other wildcraft with a touch of up-cycling thrown in. You can also catch up with me on Facebook at Drye Goods Studio.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Winter Fun

Sometimes you just need to take something one step further, for whatever reason. Winter is a great time for eco printers to catch up on stuff like that. You may have things set aside that didn't turn out all that great, or are not what you expected. It could also be that while something is a perfectly acceptable piece of fabric, it isn't the color that you need at the moment.

I picked these two pieces to do over. The one on the left is silk charmeuse, and while a nice print, there isn't enough contrast between it and the other things I would like to go with it. The one on the right is an experiment with only the green leaves of Poinsettia. In this picture it looks a lot better than it does in real life. It came out very pale and then there are the hinky black spots.

You have some options; you could mix up some sort of dye and over dye the whole thing, or you could just eco print over what you already did-sometimes those turn out fantastic, or you can expose it to another mordant or adjunct. In this case I am using the iron pot as the post mordant or adjunct. I wanted the charmeuse piece to be darker, more gray and in the case of the yellow nightmare-anything has to be better than that, so into the iron pot they went. First I filled this cast iron dutch oven with water and a splash of vinegar and brought that to a boil and then hauled it back inside to cool off. I was afraid if I left out on the gas stove to cool I would forget it and it would freeze solid in this lovely polar vortex we are having. Once the water was tepid I dumped in both pieces of fabric. Then I went off to do something else, but I set the timer on my phone for about 15 minutes so I would remember to go back, give the fabric a stir and check to see what was happening. 

The first time around there wasn't much going on but as the afternoon progressed both pieces got darker. I was really hoping the yellow one would turn green as it sometimes does with this treatment, but as you will see in the pictures below, it came out kind of gray. There isn't an exact procedure for this process, when you think it is dark enough, take it out. Remember that wet fabric appears about two shades darker than when it is dry, so take that into consideration. Depending on the plant material, it is possible to turn something totally black, so if that isn't what you are after-check it often.

This is the one that was yellow. I like it and may leave it that way, but I could eco print on top of it. I may just let it sit around a bit to ponder if it is done or not.

This is the charmeuse piece, the background is grayed out and some of the leaf prints are more defined.
If you are wondering why I took the second set of pictures against a canvas background it is because I had a bear of a time getting the colors right in the photos. I let the phone update last night-and no Samsung, I am not at all happy with the updates to the camera!! It was very difficult to get true color, especially with the shiny charmeuse, so about the only way to get you to see what I see (and not have to troop out into the aforementioned polar vortex to take pictures) was to lay both pieces against the white, it must make the camera "see" differently or something. No amount of messing around with the settings would fix it. Anyway, the background came out a lovely blue-gray and will look great with the other two pieces of fabric I am using.

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