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.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

An Ann Johnston's Grand Finale

Judith again but for the last time.  Here are the surface designed fabric I made with Beth in February using Ann's suggestions for hoses, chains, and ropes.  Oh my!

 This first one was wrapped around a chain diagonally, scrunched up, placed in purple dye for 15 minutes, then soda ash was added to the dye.  Here is a picture of it batching.

 One yard length, salvage to salvage width, cotton fabric.
The purple dye was an overdye. The original dye was a soy wax pattern on a silk screen.  It was just too ugly!  But with the purple on top of it, I see koi under ripples of water.  What do you see?

  One yard length, salvage to salvage width, cotton fabric.

Okay, this one is still horrible but I think it can be added to and improved.  This was a rope wrap.  Notice that the texture is not as strong as the pattern made by the chain.  Just like the first piece, this is an overdye of a particularly ugly piece.  For some reason I thought scraping straight dye powder onto fabric would give a great affect.  Not so much.  The texture overdye did soften the strong splotches.  I think I need to stamp an equally strong pattern in an equally strong color to counteract the fushia.  But now I at least have a great background for all the foreground clutter I need to add.  I am open to suggestions.  Here is a wonderful detail short of the texture.

This last one is my most and least favorite. As a whole fabric piece, it does not work but the detail shots are wonderful.  I can either add something and make a better whole cloth design or I can cut it up and use it as is.   Do you have a preference or suggestion?

One yard length, salvage to salvage width, cotton fabric.
This is another overdyed piece.  The original had the soy wax circles with blue and orange dye paste spread on with a credit card.  You can see some of the lines from the applications.  I then wrapped it around a hose, scrunched, dyed, soda ashed, and batched. Ugh but here are the detail shots.

I hope that: 1) I have inspired you to try some of Ann's techniques and 2) don't throw away a "failure" but try, try again.  It may just need a second or third or fourth technique or overdye.

Have Fun!


  1. I like the first and last pieces but REALLY love that last piece!!

  2. I love the results of your chain wrap! I have had similar results using a large nylon rope... great way to create water effects. And I love your piece with the circles... never thought about scrunching on a length of hose! Thanks for sharing your results.

  3. Great post! I am currently over-dyeing some UGLY pieces from my first time experimenting with dye. We'll see how they turn out after my second try!

  4. Your Ugh is my Aah!!


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