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Friday, January 17, 2014

Bundling Up...

is a good idea in the winter (it's a three jumper day round here)... but  eco printers do it all year round!  I was given India Flint's book on natural dyeing for Christmas, and a week ago, I followed her instructions for 'cold bundling'.  This technique basically involves putting plant materials onto damp cloth, wrapping them up tight, and leaving them for at least a week, or as long as you can bear it... the longer the better, really... before unwrapping them to expose the colour, letting them dry, then ironing.  Ecoprinting, in a nutshell..  Of course, there's a lot more to it than that... but for my first attempt, I used red and brown onion skins and tops, the top of a red pepper (I didn't think that would work, and I don't think it did...), and some tea.  I tied them up with fishing line, and left them for a week.  This is what I found when I went to check them today.

The one on the left is reminiscent of a haggis... as you can see, the one at the right is not terribly well wrapped... I'm not the tidiest of workers...  My intention had been to take a photograph, and then leave them a bit longer; and then I spotted the mould.  Reader, I panicked.  So... I unwrapped them, and they are currently drying off.  The one on the left is silk, the other one is cotton, and the difference is clear.

Here is a close up of the silk... the dark flecks are tea leaves, still hanging on; they will brush off when it's dry (I hope!).

The variety of colour isn't really showing well in a photograph; I'm quite pleased with it, though, and think it will make an interesting little quilted piece.  There are reddish sections where there were red onion skins, but they show much better on the cotton (there were more of them in this bundle);

There is much more overall colour on the silk piece, but it was much smaller than the cotton.  I think I have a lot to learn about this particular process, but I'm happy enough with my first this space to see what I (eventually) do with it.  It is a slow process; it will have to sit for a couple of weeks before it is rinsed, and then I will be able to do something with it.  

Now to try ivy... 


Dianne said...

Hello Marion, I love India Flint, and your turned out fantastic, thanks for sharing, you can dye anything..
Have a wonderful weekend..

Vicki Miller said...

I saw something similar recently on just hands on. I am afraid with it being so hot here at the moment that they would dry out too quick and perhaps mould would be a major problem, but I will definitely have a go in autumn!