Sunday, August 21, 2016

Extreme overdyeing

2 reds, 2 yellows, 4 blues, about 30 yards of fabric, dyeing, preparing for dyeing, labeling, panicking and triple checking. Ready for the final overdyes. This has been a major project! Looking forward to some pretty colors and good reference charts.

Extreme overdyeing - not yet an Olympic sport...

Friday, July 29, 2016

Dyeing families

After taking Carol Soderlund's excellent class on color families, I embarked on an ambitious (aka crazy) project to dye 8 color families. Here's a preview of the chaos. Note the stink eye from Ms. Twitch, who feels very neglected.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Pentel gel pens, inktense and dynaflow - precision, color, POP!

Too much fun with Pentel gel pens. I love the precision they allow.

Not the best choice for a scarf as they only really show up on one side. Will be great for some other applications though.

Then beavering away with the Inktense pencils. I wasn't crazy about all the coloring lines that resulted, so out with the Inktense blocks and much mixing, rubbing and blending and it's more to my liking. 

I think I will use the blocks more in future, but the pencils are great for detail. Once I got to the background it seemed much too expensive to use the Inktense so out with the Dynaflow and salt. 

How I wish Procion dyes could replicate this effect! But once the Dynaflow started its old abrading tricks I remembered why I switched to Procion. 

The abrasion marks work with the antique look of the scarf, luckily.

Designs loosely based on Jacobean embroidery. 

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Procion dyeing - science or alchemy? The magic of overdyeing

It doesn't matter how many times I do it, moving a pile of yellows, greens and blues to purples, pinks, reds and browns just feels like alchemy, not science! So glad I did Carol Soderlund's color mixing class. Magic is easier to perform when you have a great road map.
The magic of overdyeing!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Ice-dyeing circles

At last! One I like. Color is nicely blended and has intense peaks for interest. Needless to say the chemist photographed this scarf as she headed out the door with it....

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Zentangle and Inktense

I've never zentangled, such a shocking revelation, I know! So when my drying mat got grungy looking - it was beige to start with, so not far to go...

I got out the Pentel gel pens and started making it prettier. 

Then out with the Inktense pencils, my newest toy. They were a lot of fun, pretty much colored pencils till you add water. I can see how this adult coloring craze got started. It's very restful coloring a design. No pesky composition choices to make, just play with the colors. 

Once I added water the flaw reared it's head as usual. Not only was this a waffle fabric, which had added some kinks to the coloring process, but the mat is designed to be absorbent. It's for dishes to dry on after all. I wafted a brush over the Inkense and not much happened because the water just got sucked into the fabric instead of having time to turn the pencil marks into flowing ink. Eventually I was painting with spoons of water. An interesting technique...eventually I got on enough water to make the lines melt together. I didn't like the strength of color I'd achieved, so turned to the blocks of Intense and adding a little more oomph. 

Now I like my drying mat much better. I also have a new batch of scarf blanks because I can't wait to try this on a more receptive fabric type. I think zentangle and Inktense were made for each other and will make funky scarves! Stay tuned!

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Carol Soderlund class: Color mixing for dyers - Mind blown!

I spent the past week in Baltimore, Ohio at the Crow Barn. Fabulous location, wonderful food, great people.
The Crow Barn
But the class, oh my! I have spent 2 years experimenting with color and trying to find a good system to get a handle on my results. Carol Soderlund's class on color mixing not only reinforced what I have already learned, but also went so much further. She has such a great system for testing color families, and cross referencing the results. We dyed and dyed and dyed again. Working in groups meant we made a huge color "Bible" in just 5 days. This extensive list of all our results, with one inch squares of fabric indexed as reference materials, means that future overdyes, color choices and gradients will all be simplified. I feel as though I was groping in the dark and someone turned the light on! Thanks, Carol! Now maybe I can stop testing and start creating!
More cushions and less testing in my future!
This was the first time I had dyed solids. I still love low water immersion, just for the freedom and the wonderful variety of color and texture it creates on the fabric, but I can see myself dyeing solids too now. I can see why people rave about Carol's classes. She is a great teacher, giving you confidence that if you follow her directions you will get where you need to go. There is lots to digest, but at least I have finished sticking down all my little pieces of fabric. If I never see double sided tape again, that will be just fine by me!
Day 1 stacks, waiting for more dyeing, ironing, chopping, distributing and sticking. I need a vacation from my vacation...
Here are some pics of all the lovely colors we made. Phew, I feel exhausted looking at all we achieved in such a short time!
Some of the great colors people dyed

Lots of different techniques

The light behind this one brings out the differing depths of color

This one looks like granite!

The shadows would make some fabulous starting points for further work on this cloth!
And just in case we got cocky, there was a Nancy Crow master class going on upstairs. So much beautiful work..