After my success with cotton lawn, I decided to level up and dye some silk. I chose this natural-coloured raw silk noile from Minerva. Mmmm, it’s lovely stuff. All nubbly and slightly rough in handle, but feels lovely to wear. It’s also crying out for some dye action, obviously.
I first tried brushing and dappling the fabric with some silk paints. This wasn’t very successful for a number of reasons, chiefly bad colour choices and bad technique which led to the fabric looking like a mouldy old dishcloth. But HEY, there are no mistakes when it comes to dyeing! I just mixed up some dye and did a similar clothes-peg technique as before to cover the mess.
This time I used Dylon black and navy blue hand dye sachets mixed together, hoping for a richly pigmented result. The colour turned out a pretty good appropriation of traditional Japanese indigo which I’m delighted about. I tried a few techniques again across a metre of fabric each. The main reason to make this fabric was actually to participate in Marilla’s hand-printed fabric swap. I was paired with Lucy of Reniqlo, whose lovely creative and artistic blog you should go have a look at. It was tricky to decide which piece to send her, but I plumped for the more interesting, intricate one.
I was really happy with how this fabric turned out. I don’t think I could have ever cut it up if I kept it! There are so many details in it. Look, here’s a raccoon face.
And some feathers:
And a rams skull?
I can’t exactly remember how I bound it, but I think it was pleated and rubber-banded. Here’s the piece I kept, with a more straightforward clothespeg resist pattern.
I made myself yet another zippy top – even with the same seaming detail as before. The silk noile is only 45″ wide so I really had to squeeze the pieces on – one half of the back is on the bias, the horror. I can whip up a zippy in under an hour now, French seams and bias bound neckline and all. Spoiler: pretty sure it will be my OWOP pattern.
Finally, here is the fabric that Lucy sent me! WOW, I am absolutely in love with it. It’s dyed silver grey with just touches of tie-dye which have left white spine-like streaks in areas.
Then painted with a gorgeous triangle design. I love triangles. I love mustard yellow and grey. What on earth shall I make with it?!
It’s been so fun to practice dyeing more, and especially to swap fabric as I’m not really sure how many more shibori-esque zippy tops I need. If anyone else fancies swapping fabrics sometime, just drop me a comment or email. Packages of mystery fabric are FUN.