I bought a vintage picinic basket that was in great shape but the contents were missing, so I went on a hunt for some new pieces.
I lined the inside with plastic and then a quilted removable, liner.
My fav part was the plated spoons that I made into napkin rings, and all the special silver plated silverware that I added to the basket.
I covered a hard cardboard with navy linen, sewed in elastic to hold the lid utensils and attached the board to the lid with Velcro.
If one looks carefully, there are plated pie forks, a butter knife, a vintage ice-cream scoop and a beautiful lacquered bento box.
Cute little baby blocks. I used four, 4 1/2 ” flannel squares and two Minkie squares. I made 1/4″ seam allowances. There are lots of instructions on the Internet. The boxes are stuffed with fibrefill, and one has a piece of crinkly plastic inside. Love. Super quick gifts! 3 in an evening.
Spring always offers up opportunities for “sweet” photographs so I snapped a few of the birds at a local pond, and the magnolia tree out back. I then manipulated the two images with a super little app called, Superimpose. I printed the merged image onto a piece of transfer paper called Lazertran.
The image is printed with an ink jet printer. The decal is then slipped carefully on to a canvas, dampened with matt medium as the binder. Ta da! Love it.
This lovely cotton/ linen piece took a great deal of time.
- First, I designed a repeat pattern. A fairly lengthy process, but fun!
- Transfered the drawing design to Lino. Cut with speedball Lino cutter.
- Hand stamped small Lino leaves and branches in greens.
- Hand stamped large Lino on top of the leaves. After a few hand rubbing efforts, the prints were too light, so I finally used a beautiful old printmaking press.
- I think the fabric needed about 40 individual passes through the press. Many hours!
- I’m not sure what it will become….maybe an apron or skirt or a lap quilt.
The linen was taped to the table, drawn on with orchid ink, and then stitched and stitched.
After sewing, the threads are all pulled tightly in a long ” package” and dipped 10 separate times in an indigo vat. After dyeing, all that stitching of the fabric is finally cut open, washed, and sewn into a pillow. 100 hours of work for one pillow….
This tutorial is for a fellow Shibori classmate, Renita, who participated in an amazing workshop with me in Japan. That course was mainly about indigo and Shibori, taught by a gifted fellow, Bryan Whitehead.
So this is how I started…..I bought some silk scarves from Dharma trading company. Cotton and linen work as well.
1. Soak the scarf in simmering water for an hour to remove sizing. Some say this is optional.
2. Rinse in filtered water.
3. Lay damp scarf out as flat as possible on a long table, counter or floor.
4. Place fresh leaves along one half of the scarf, lengthwise. Consider eucalyptus leaves, blackberry leaves, plum leaves, smoke bush leaves, maple leaves, onion skins, pomegranate skins….see the Internet for a multitude of appropriate plants. I just happened to use those particular plants.
5. I flattened my leaves in a heavy book for a few hours prior to putting them on the scarf. Flattened leaves produce clearer images.
6. For darker colours or dark outlines of leaves, I painted the back of a few leaves with a solution of 2 parts vinegar, one part water, and a couple of rusted iron nails. ( this solution sat overnight before I used it)
7. I put a piece of very thin copper wire on top of a few leaves on one scarf. It made a lovely dark, curly line.
8. Fold the scarf in half ….lengthwise, over on itself, with leaves enclosed.
9. Roll the scarf from one short end to the other very tightly around a bamboo stick, or berry branch, leaves flat inside, and then wrap the roll very tightly with strong string.
10. Now you have a choice to steam the roll over water or submerge the roll in a simmering dye bath of leaves, or berries or cabbage etc. See the Internet for dye bath ideas.
A. Place scarf roll on top of something for steaming ( I used canning jars)and then weight your roll down and cover the pot with a lid. I used an iron pot, but Stainless or aluminum work as well. After 45 minutes remove your steamed rolls and cool…
B. Or….submerge your scarf bundle in a simmering bath of leaves for 45 minutes . Leave rolls overnight in pot. Remove rolls when they look quite deeply coloured. This scarf was dyed in a pot with 1/2 a red cabbage. A rinse in washing soda will turn it blue/ green.
11. Unravel your piece…this is the fun part!
12. You have a choice here using mordants, which help set the dye. Air dry your project and iron well to set colour. Rinse in cool water, or an alum bath or a washing soda bath. The type of rinse may change your colours so I’d recommend reading about different mordants . This was rinsed in alum prior to dyeing.
The mordants….alum and washing soda are relatively harmless. It is recommended to use a mask to prevent inhaling powder and gloves to prevent staining of your hands, especially if one is using an iron solution.
And that’s a simple version to get one started…message me if you have a question.