Friday, July 31, 2009

Purple Bison

I started this piece several years ago, click here, I'll have to search the archives to find the first post on this piece. I found it in a drawer last night and decided it needed finishing!

Digital print on brown craft paper (paper bag actually)

Logwood dyed silk chiffon

Linen and hemp threads dyed with natural dyes

8x10 inches

I love how the fabric buttons look being back lit like this.

Updated Zine

I just updated The Natural Surfaces Zine with indigo dyeing instructions, I'll try to get more video uploaded to youtube on how to use a fermentation vat, now that my computer is working once again, in the near future. The instructions are for the traditional indigo lye vat (NOTE you can substitute soda ash for the lye which is what I highly recommend).

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Pale Horse the Prophecy -


Paint on Canvas 36x48

I was going to add more paint to the surface but have since decided on some loose running stitches and some attachments. I started this piece in 1996 it's paint on canvas I've finally decided on how I want to stitch the piece and what I'd like to attach to the surface. I'll have John build me a frame for the piece when I'm done

Thursday, July 23, 2009

About Selling Natural Dyes

Seems that there is some confusion or maybe some outright shit stirring (some folks just can't seem to help themselves) I'm not quite sure... but FYI I quit selling Natural Dyes, etc., two years ago.

About two years ago I simply grew tired of filling little bottles with natural dye materials, labeling them, shipping them out and making zero profit! Couple that with the fact that the sole North American supplier of Natural Dyes, Roger at Alliance Imports, passed away unexpectedly in March of 2006, the source for natural dyes dried up. For a moment we considered expanding and getting into the import export business. After much thought I decided to take this as a cue and exhausted from filling jars and trying to dye fabric at the same time, I bowed out of the industry.

So where are the Natural Dyes??? Try Google it's your friend!


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Blue Poppies WIP

Blue Poppies WIP - it's missing something I'm just now sure what at the moment!
4x6 inches
Painted Timtex, Indigo dyed Silk Organza and Crepe
Machine Embroidered
AuriFil Threads

Mark Making with Nature Book on CDROM

Mark Making with Nature: Surface Design with Natural Dyes on CDROM now available in my shop!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Tree of Life No. 1 and No. 2

Tree of Life No. 2

3 x 3.5 inches
Commecial Cloth
Machine Embroidered
AuriFil Threads
Timtex Core

Tree of Life No. 1

3 x 3.5 inches
Commecial Cloth
Machine Embroidered
AuriFil Threads
Timtex Core

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Scouring PFD Fabrics

Once again it is time to point out the importance of proper fabric preparation when dyeing with natural dyes. I don't say this to be rude but rather to save you much time and effort when dyeing cotton with natural dyes.

Q. Do I have to scour my PFD, Prepared for Dyeing, Fabrics?

A. YES you must scour PFD fabric before mordnating and dyeing with natural dyes, I go as far as even washing BEFORE I scour my fabric to ensure that the dressing oils, all fabrics receive these it's to keep the dust down when the fabric is rolled onto bolts, tubes, etc.. I have scouring instructions on my website and video on youtube. The scouring process is so very important with cellulosic fibers as it helps to force the fibers open before the mordanting and dyeing steps. Scouring ensures that your fabric will hold maximum natural dye molecules and helps to achieve truer colors.

Q. is your water hard or treated? Water quality is very important regarding the final dye color out come. Hard water tends to supress most dye molecules (exception is weld it becomes more intense).

Q. Which plants do you plan to dye with? Some plants do not yield permanent color so it is important to know this before you start a project, as depending on your plans for the fabric you may not be able to over dye at a later date if your colors fade.

NOTE: Also cotton fabrics don't take certain natural dye colors no matter what you do to the fabric but silk and wool fabrics will suck the color up like no tomorrow.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Compost WIP

Each piece of fabric was dyed using natural dyes, the pink was cochineal, blue was indigo, pale yellow was weld. The caramel or beige piece has already been compost dyed once but never did a whole lot for me so it's going into the pile again. I did this once before only with indigo, rust and tannin. I'm not sure how this will look it'll either be a go or a bust but first I need to add more stuff to the surface for textures, resists, and the like. This is a combination of both hand and machine stitching.


Angel eagerly anticipating something, anything, just end the boredom!!!