A TECHNIQUE DRIVEN Blog dedicated to mastery of surface design techniques. First we dye, overdye, paint, stitch, resist, tie, fold, silk screen, stamp, thermofax, batik, bejewel, stretch, shrink, sprinkle, Smooch, fuse, slice, dice, AND then we set it on fire using a variety of heat tools.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Scrunch and Snow

I thought I would take advantage of Judy's scrunch dyeing technique this month and use it for some snow-dyeing.  

Most of the snow-dying I have seen involves setting up a rack and screen for the snow and dye to drip through the fabric.  I've never done that -- I just let the fabric sit in the soup of melted snow and dye and I have always achieved really interesting fabrics that way.  But I hate wasting dye.  So I thought: what if I folded up fabric and put it under the scrunched fabric to act as a kind of rack and absorb some of the melted snow and dye?  I figured I would get some pastel coordinating fabrics to go with my snow-dyes.  

So I scrunched up fabric on top of the folded fabric (all of it was soda-soaked), added a layer of the powdery dry snow from my front garden, and poured on dye concentrate.  

I brought all of the containers inside to batch overnight.

Of course, I got beautiful snow-dyes.

But the real surprise was underneath.  No pale coordinating fabrics here.  I got some great stuff with light and dark areas.  I think that some of these will benefit from further over-dyeing to really bring the colors together.

I also tried sprinkling some dye powder directly on top of the packed snow.

I really like the results.  And it was much quicker than mixing up the dyes into concentrate, then pouring them on the snow.  I think that the best color is achieved by the folding and/or scrunching of the fabric before adding the snow.  The one in the middle has a nice effect because I loosely folded the fabric in a fan shape, then scrunched the ends.  So for "school nights," when I am pressed for time, this is a great option for me.


  1. Beautiful, beautiful fabrics, Karen! I will have to try putting the folded piece underneath next time. I have a parfait in batching right now with 3 layers, and I accordion folded the middle layer, then curled it into a circle, and I'm using mostly blues and blue-greens, so I can't wait to see how they come out. Keep 'em coming!

  2. I MAY have to mix more dye. God knows I've got enough snow. Your bottom pieces are GREAT!!!

  3. Gorgeous results.....I love the dry powder on snow dyed fabrics.....quick and easy route to stunning textiles. :-)

  4. Beautiful, I hate winters but the snow gives us these fabrics.


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