Another set of indigo and linen napkins has been completed…two of my
favourite things. The first photo is a napkin which was accordion folded lengthwise, then folded in a series of equilateral triangles and clamped with only one clamp. (“tooth mark”). The finished piece is the second photo in the full shoot photo of all five napkins.
The funky one with squares and “Water lines” is a combo of one half of a large tongue depressor and a few small wooden squares. I like it.
I now have a few lovely quartet sets for gifts and one set for us.
These eight linen napkins were dyed with that gorgeous blue indigo, over a period of 4 days. Love the set. The process was a super labour intensive Japanese shibori technique called itajame.
1. I scoured and boiled the linen for two hours in 1/4 cup washing soda dissolved in a massive stainless steel soup pot filled with water.
2. The fabric was then rinsed, dried and ironed, which took about another 2 hours.
3. I cut 8 pieces 24”x24”.
4. The stripes, photo 1,2,5,6, were ironed in an accordion fold and then bound by tongue depressors, using elastics to secure the wood. Photo 10…two were dyed and dipped without resists and therefore resulted in a rich indigo blue.
5. The circle resisted napkin, photo 3,4, was clamped with small, wooden disks sandwiched over an accordion folded napkin. 2 other napkins were folded into a triangle over an accordion fold and clamped between tongue depressors…photos 8,9,10.
6. Each napkin was individually dyed eight times in a warm, pre-reduced crystal indigo, lye and thiox bath.
7. After every one of the eight, 3 minute dips, I fluffed and ruffled and air dried each napkin for about 10 minutes until all the green colour oxidized to blue.
Each napkin takes at least half an hour of dipping and a total of at least an hour of 10 minute mini-oxidizing sessions. It ended up being close to 2 hours per napkin. Crazy amount of time, but well worth it!
I am still experimenting with waterless litho. It’s a process that was invented by Nik Semenoff, in Canada. I am only in Mexico for a short while, so that I can’t quite manage an edition, but I always learn a phenomenal amount of printmaking techniques. Enough to get the creative juices flowing, but the last time I tried the process, the chemicals in Canada were too different than those I used in Mexico.
I am hoping for some success once I get back to Canada.
The print workshop in Puerto Vallarta is usually very crowded so I rented
I finished a couple of proofs but no editions were finished, but it’s always a good learning experience.
Mokulito drawing on birch plywood. Litho ink drawing. Covered with arabica and rested 24 hours. Cold water rinse. Vanson inks, quick, heavily rolled, sponge rollers over a wet board. Printed on water spritzed paper.
Finished print with Chine Collé fruit, pre-pasted with nori rice glue.
My next effort was a drawing in carborundum of stones… overlay over acrylic painted chine collé rice paper, glued with nori paste. Vanson inks. Water spritzed paper.
The last effort was a chine collé bird above a carborundum foreground. Regular oil etching inks.
We’ve recently returned from India, and while we were there I had our tour guide’s friend bargain for some antique wooden ajrakh blocks. I had a small collection of blocks prior to our holiday, but these ones are beautiful and intricate.
I started printing the minute I came home. In the end, I ended up with a very large tablecloth and a light summer top. Love them both.
And…. there will be more to come.