The weather has been APPALLING here for most of the day. Horrendous rain and heavy winds until late afternoon meant that I didn’t feel one little bit guilty (virtuous in fact!!) felting all day and I was even able to buy some food dye and have a go at my first dying experiment! First things first, here are a couple more pictures of the sleeveless jacket I felted at the weekend but you do need to bear with me as the pictures aren’t great. To be strictly fair it is not totally finished but you know me by now, I really need to push myself to add a couple of buttons and a fish skin and leather belt, maybe tomorrow???
Yesterday when the jacket was drying in front of the range I decided to use some of the gorgeous hand dyed silk I bought from Lyda Rump to make some more nuno scarves, my target is a minimum of 10 scarves a week from now on! The piece of chiffon that I choose to work with was in fabulous aquamarine colours and I suddenly had the absolute brain wave of felting one of the pieces with some extraordinary merino/silk/tencel/glitz artisan batts that I bought from Blas in Urban Fauna Studio last October. This has turned into one of my absolute favourite nuno scarves ever, check out this cool texture and colour!
I used a combination of turquoise and apple green for the second piece of silk chiffon and turquoise, royal blue and apple green for the third. It is incredible how different colours combine together and I hope to take more pictures tomorrow, all the scarves are nice but for me this one is absolutely special!Working with Lyda’s gorgeous fabrics got me on to thinking yet again about dying my own raw materials. I know that I could achieve beautiful effects if I dyed wool, silk, fibres, fabrics, yarns, etc. here at Clasheen but to be honest I just don’t think that I would have the patience on an ongoing basis and for me the mess and tidying up process would drive me mental. I also feel that when I can buy such fantastic hand dyed materials from Lyda why bother myself? Well, inspired by the chiffon I did decide to have a go at dying with food colouring today as for me this seemed a simple way to use easily available dye stuff without horrible mordants and a lot of technical ‘stuff’. First off I nuno felted a white scarf combining it with 16 micron merino, raw mohair locks and corn fibre tops, when it was felted I left it soaking in a vinegar and water solution. I had done some searching on the internet first and thought that the corn fibre would not absorb the dye but this was fine with me as my intention was to create an ocean inspired colour scheme. In my excitement buying the food colouring I didn’t even think what I was purchasing and it was only when I was mixing the colours that I discovered I had green to combine with yellow and not blue as I had thought! Never mind, green must be my favourite colour so nothing ventured, nothing gained, various shades of dark to yellow-green it would be Once I had the food colouring diluted with some hot water and vinegar I placed the already soaked scarf in a microwavable bowl and ‘painted’ on the colours. Realistically this meant that I used a bottle with a nozzle for the darker green and poured the yellow/green mixture directly onto the scarf from a glass bottle, very technical here! I swirled the scarf around with a chopstick before covering the bowl with cling film. 5 minutes on high, a rest followed by 5 minutes more and the microwave process was over. To be continued tomorrow …..
ithout much to loose except an untidy kitchen!
Nicole the jacket is lovely! Great colours. And the nuno scarf has such great texture. I am interesting in whether normal food colouring works. I use acid dyes in the microwave, but that would be an interesting option!
Gorgeous colours enlivening a muted landscape. Very inspiring and I love the idea of using chopsticks for swirling around. Very practial of you Nicole and I love practical people who use what it available in the kitchen. :))
Your jacket is really gorgeous. I feel greatly inspired to try and make one for myself. What did you use as a template, if I may ask? I’ m also interested in measurements before and after felting. I read in your profile that you started felting only a few years ago. I am amazed of the level of craftwomanship that you have achieved so far. I check your blog every day in the hope you’ve made something new and never feel disappointed.
kind regards, Lucie
I am drooling, as I can never get my silk to crinkle as you do. I suppose it is your expertise that makes it yours rich and yummy. I must admit I am green with envy. Congrats at your success!!! Lovely color combo and finishing.
Wow Nicola…I am practically speechless…Note, I said practically. These two pieces have to be two of my favorites. Love the rich, vibrant colors…Breath-taking! And the textures…Absolutely fantastic. Whoooo-Hooooo! Love it!