Sunday, June 12, 2022

Mother Nature's Cloth

 There are many methods for dyeing and printing fabric. Most people use procion dyes that allow you to achieve bright colors. Lisa Binkley is an expert in the ancient ways, dyeing and printing with colors drawn from roots, bark, flowers and even insects. This week, her students at the Quilt & Surface Design Symposium soaked cloth in mordants, then dyed with madder, weld, cutch, and logwood. They wrapped and steamed fabric "burritos" that held fillings of foraged leaves and seed heads. Each unwrapping was a delightful surprise: subtle, sometimes unexpected  colors, leaf silhouettes, delicate patterning. The old ways may be labor-intensive but the results can be elegant and dramatic..