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, September 14, 2016

stirring up the henna vat and actually weaving!

Continuing with the Indigo and Weaving workshop I took at Arrowmont last year in conjunction with the Surface Design Association conference.

All eyes are on the board with the recipe for the 1-2-3 Indigo with Henna vat.  Sara Goodman is in the center with the purple shirt and white apron.  We made two big vats of indigo - one with fructose and one with henna. 

Sara used an electric beater to get the henna mixed up and ready to add to the vat.  Here's the henna she used - emphasizing that we didn't want any additives in the henna.

Below she has added the lime to the vat - the third ingredient. 

 Every day she checked both pots and posted a progress report by dipping a cloth strip and hanging it on the bulletin board.

When we finally got to dipping - it got a little messy.

We had five days for the workshop and the henna vat came up faster than the fructose one.  While they were "cooking" we measured and prepared our weft for the ikat weaving.

Here's Mary Zigafoose with one of her pieces.  Above shows her deft hands tying ikat tape to prevent the indigo from seeping in to certain areas of her design.  In the piece she is holding up, all the white areas of weft were tied tightly with ikat tape. 

Here is my design tied and ready to to into the indigo.  She has these wonderful boards constructed so that you can measure your weft in 1/2 inch bundles and they are all connected so that when you have washed it and dried it and are ready to weave, you can just wind it on the shuttle and go for it.  The design has already been accomplished.

Below is my meager few inches of tapestry woven with white header on each side of the wool.  It was great to do this process from start to finish and understand all the steps involved in getting a design with the ikat process.
Did I already mention that the looms were threaded for us by helpers at Arrowmont?  All we had to do was tie them on front and back and begin to weave.  A luxury for sure.  The weaving studio from the second floor viewing area.

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