At the end of week 15

From the studio week 15There are still some leaves hanging on! 

Outside the studio

This tree is just outside the studio. It is magnificent.

I heard from Museum and Galleries services during the week that my work “Which way” which was acquired by the Redland City Council will be part of the Twelve Degrees of Latitude Exhibition, opening at Perc Tucker Regional Gallery, Townsville and touring. I am absolutely delighted to be part of this exhibition!

On Tuesday night, 3 “Sturties” (Dale, Slavica and I) went on a wombat hunt. It was on dusk as that’s when you are likely to see them and we saw: 4 dead wombats, 3 feral cats, a hundred roos and…. 1 live wombat!  And we had a very nice country drive followed by a lovely dinner.

The week continued to be a very social one. On Wednesday night, H and David hosted a wonderful dinner in Ainsworth with Megan, John and Dale and me. Thursday night saw a gathering at a Thai restaurant in Bowral: great company fantastic food. Friday was a student exhibition opening with pre event drinks instead of our usual Friday night get together. Saturday I went wombat spotting at Carol’s farm. It was a dark, blowy, showery night and there trotting around the paddock with 3 humans in tow was a wombat. We followed it across the paddock, under the road (through a pipe), across to the dam and back again. It was a very obliging fellow and we got very close. Eventually we decided to leave him to it. I’m sorry that I wasn’t smart enough to take the camera as I could have got up close and got a beauty.

Work progressed steadily. The circles were discharged and redyed. The eucalyptus bath seems to make the discharge process slower. I also did a quick sample to check whether eucalyptus oil would achieve the same semi resist effect that can be got using the leaves to dye with. I immersed one edge of a previously dyed fabric in some oil then applied the fibre reactive dye. It was a very patterned piece, but I am reasonably sure that there was a slight difference in the take up of dyes even using this commercial preparation.

The following 2 images are details of “Meeting Place V” . The full view can be seen in the “Weaving at Sturt” page. I did have quite a bit of difficulty deciding which was the front as the back view had some very beautiful dye patterns.

Meeting place 5: front

Meeting place 5: view of back

The following 2 images are of the sister piece of the pervious one: “Meeting Place VI” There was no trouble with this piece deciding front or back as this was decided by the image.

Meeting Place VI: front

meeting Place VI: Back

Emily completed the weaving of her first 2 rag rugs. She had woven them side by side on the big loom. Now she is getting ready to weave full width.

Emily and her 2 rag rugs just off the loom.

Anne brought along her scarf that she’d finished. She is delighted with the result.

Anne wearing her beautiful scarf

I completed the series of scarves that I’d been weaving the previous week. This series involved double weave with the layers attached at one edge in the same grid. After weaving I stitched circles and bound these before dying one in the Eucalyptus Cineraria (Argyle Apple) dyebath. This time as it was wool, I finally got the red brown that I knew was possible.

Scarf tied before dyeing

Integration VI

I also finally got to try the wood shavings which had been soaking in alcohol. Remember this was started in week 6. I used one of the wool scarves. It was a spectacular non event! No colour at all, but it certainly has been fun to do and a talking point of course. The scarf went into the Cineraria dyebath after it’s mate. It isn’t quite as dark as the previous one.

Integration V

A second series of scarves was completed on the same theme.This one uses cotton and acrylic for both the warp and weft with a panel of double weave grid. I drew circles in a devore chemical and removed the cotton component.

Integration III

The Saturday class proved a hive of activity. The morning was spent weaving and evaluating what had been covered. But the afternoon was strictly play. We experimented with a potato dextrin resist, playing with deb potato. We scrapped it out and then scratched back into it, even with fingers. It would be a great activity for kids: they could even lick their fingers! It took a long time to dry in front of the heater but finally we applied some procion dyes. The fabric was then wrapped up for batching. Some of the fibre reactive dyes were also used for shibori pieces, some on commercial fabric, others on hand woven.

Playtime with spud!

Dye applied to one of the student's work.

In addition we had a special dye activity. I put on an indigo bath. It was a lot of fun! I got to work on a previously naturally dyed fabric and folded it before dunking. And because I had one bit of white fabric left, I quickly tied it up with rubber bands. I just couldn’t resist that indigo!  Others had stitched, and tied fabrics with one even having grains of rice tied in. It was a great way to finish of the Saturday classes.

indigo fishing (Image from Lois)

 indigo "bat" (Image from Lois). The fabric is hanging while oxidizaion takes place.

Indigo squares

This fabric had been previously dyed the week before in bark with alum mordant .

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