In August I’ll be doing an ecoprinting workshop at the Pegg Garden, and I need to have some samples to show of what happens when you wrap plant material bits in fabric make the plant dyes transfer and print patterns on the fabric.
India Flint talks about these processes in her book Eco Colour. She also described picking up little bits and pieces of things when she travels in order to make ‘souvenir fabric’ from her journeys, and I was inspired to try this out on my trip to Ontario. I’ve gathered up all sorts of bits and bobs, including some lovely large maple and oak leaves, a bit of seaweed type stuff growing in the lake, a few pinecones, some shreds of rotting tree stumps. When we were at the marina, the gardening crew were clearing out the dead flowers from the hanging baskets and I got a handful of pretty blossoms from the trimmings, and we found some really interesting things along our walk in the woods yesterday.
All these eco treasures were packed home and spread out on a piece of raw silk (we also went to the fabric store yesterday and found one bolt of a lightly textured raw silk), like so:
There’s all sorts of neat stuff on there.
The whole thing was then rolled up into a sausage, wrapped with string, and dampened.
The little mummified plant bundle will be allowed to sit, damp, until the workshop in August. I’ll keep it moist (it’ll get wrapped in plastic for the trip home) and probably set it on a warm window ledge when I get home. I could steam it, but this one is going to be an attempt at the completely cold-bundled process … just plants, silk, moisture, and time.
Guess we shall see what we get in a couple of months!