Monday, July 1, 2013

Fun with Shibori -- Part 1 -- Binding

I haven't posted in a while -- life has been a bit crazy. So now that it's a brand new month, I'm back up and running, and I think I'll start it all off with a three-part series. Yep, that's right. I have a three-part series for you all! Here goes. 

On my trip home to Iowa last month I had some time to play around with shibori. What's shibori?

Shibori (according to Wikipedia) is a "Japanese term for methods of dyeing cloth with a pattern by binding, stitching, folding, twisting, compressing it or capping." You may know some of these methods as tie-dye.  

I had this handy book that I'd been dyeing to read. Yes, that was a shibori pun...It was a great primer and walked me through basic binding and dyeing techniques. 
I had also stocked up on cheap cotton muslin and lawn fabrics. I like to scope out the remnant section for deals. My mama happened to have some string for binding. Hint for next time: get kite string that doesn't break.  
I started off with a pattern called the Spider Web. It's really basic, but still looks super cool.

Everyone wanted to help! Fortunately, there were plenty of fabric pieces.
 This is Grace's spider web binding.
Here you can see what our bindings look like before dyeing.
 Apparently, some bindings are considered art. Grace considered hers a hat.
Another method of binding is called capping. You take a small pebble or bean under your fabric and bind tightly around it. We used dry black beans. The book recommends mung beans. The binding at the base of the bean will eventually create white space since the dye won't be able to access the fabric at that point. 
The last method I really wanted to try was folding and compressing the fabric. I accordion folded my fabric and then wrapped it with string. I was supposed to compress the folds with two wooden blocks, but I didn't have I worked with what I had. It ended up looking like this when I was done. 
And here ends Part 1. Next up: DYEING!

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