There were other things that I could have done, but didn’t want to. I dug in the deeps and gathered all the supplies. I was surprised it all came back so fast considering how long it’s been since I’ve dyed or batiked anything. Making sure to snap a picture before I took off on my color adventure, I felt proud and confident on my move to sweep everything from my schedule.
It probably took an hour to get the first scarf in a dye bath. I messed around with a latticed cooling rack but it was more of a struggle than I expected. I made two small tears in the scarf so I started folding. I must have folded and re-folded that wet silk a dozen times. The ideas were grandiose pictures in my head. I couldn’t get that lattice work picture out of my head, so I went back to the cooling rack. I finally got three scarves where I wanted them. Since it’s been so long, I kept the colors straightforward- turquoise, fire red and black. I put the last item into its dye bath and paused for lunch.
Rinsing the creations can be exhilarating but also can be a letdown. The turquoise scarf was the one I ripped so I was almost hoping it wasn’t too cool. It wasn’t but I gained some insight on how to make it better next time. The fire red scarf came out pink as I had half expected it to but the creases I had hoped would be crisp and clean came out somewhat muddled. The bleeding and blending of the colors redeemed it a bit. The prize of the day came from the black geometric starburst scarf.
I follow a method from a book called Dyeing By Accident by Ann Johnston. By using less water than the usual full immersion dye baths, it allows the colors to bleed and even separate. It is truly the best lesson in color theory because it shows me what colors make up other colors.
I’ve also started a Dye Journal to track my folds and record thoughts for future renditions. It is probably the most important tool in my bag of tricks right now. There are many things I can work without, but without a log of how I’ve done things, I’m always starting over. I will probably need to add pictures at one point or another but everything is a work in progress.
The end results weren’t as prolific as I’d hoped, but the feeling I had rinsing my creations made it totally worth it. Progress in a creative avenue is what I needed on this day rather than another trip into Hilo.