Sunday, May 25, 2008

Loom Controlled Shibori

Woven Shibori by Catherine Ellis is the book I am working with now.

I love the patterning Catherine achieves on her handwoven cloth. I want to do the same, but I don't have the facilities to do vat dyes. I am fairly fluent with Procion MX dyes, so I am trying to replicate the look of fiber-reactive dyes discharged and overdyed with vat dyes using only the fiber-reactive dyes.

I like Catherine's fabric that has several colors. I decided to start with a commercially dyed chenille (tan), and overdye it with other colors after it is gathered.

Here's the fabric on the loom:
The fabric is rayon chenille warp and weft with 10/2 cotton supplementary weft. The white threads will be gathered up to form the shibori pleats for dyeing. In the photo, the supplementary warp is the simple Monk's Belt pattern. I weave four shots of rayon chenille in plain weave, then a shot of white cotton.
On the first samples I wove, I used the plain weave and Monk's Belt in a regular pattern: 4 shots of chenille between a shot of the supplementary pattern, repeated 4 times. The dyed pattern turned out too regular for me.
On the sample warp I have pictured, I varied the length of the supplementary pattern randomly. I haven't dyed these samples yet, but I am assuming the dyed pattern will be a little more irregular.
Here are the samples gathered:
The gathering threads pictured are green because I am using up small amounts of odds and ends for the supplementary wefts.

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