Would you believe? Twenty-three pieces of fabric dyed. I had decided that
I needed to get rid of my old mixed dyes as they were not giving me good color.
I had purchased some new dyes and wanted to see exactly what they would look like.
You know how color charts are. Not always the most true, and with my home
dyeing, the results can vary. I’m not into weighting my dye
powders, so it is a pleasant surprise to see what I may get.
And still more. I dyed a total of 23 colors.
This is a slow process for me. First the fabric has to be readied. This means cutting the
fabric with a wavy blade rotary cutter so that the edges don’t fray quite as
much when it is washed. The next step for me was to label each piece so that I would know
which color of dye I had used on each piece of fabric. I usually try to do this the first day.
The second day I move on. The fabric needs to be soaked in a soda ash and water solution.
This is what allows the dyes to set into the fabric. Once the fabric has soaked then it is to start
the dyeing process. This means that I scrunch and soak the fabric, put it in a
baggie and throw it into the sunshine so cook a little while I move on to the next piece.
When I have it all soaking in dye and the sun is starting to set, I pick up the baggies and bring
them into the storage building where I do my dyeing. We have been know to have
wild animals roaming this area so leaving anything like this outside can be
asking for trouble. I will leave the fabric to soak, “batch” over night as by now I’m
ready to sit . The third day is the discovery day. I rinse the fabrics to remove some of
the excess dye before putting them into the washing machine. After multiple washes,
watching the rinse water to see how clear it is, the fabric goes into the dryer.
The 4th day is the iron and watch recorded TV shows. I’m always eager to see exactly how
the colors have taken and what they really look like. My stash is now full enough for the
time being. I don’t want to have to move out. Maybe this is why I settled into such a long period
of having no inspiration or desire to do anything. Overkill with the dyeing.
FOR MY PART, I KNOW NOTHING WITH CERTAINTY, BUT THE SIGHT OF THE STARS MAKES ME DREAM.
VINCENT VAN GOGH