June Dye Plants in July

Through many dangers, toils and snares I have come since last post, dear Reader! Pinched nerves, spine miseries, carpal tunnel syndrome have kept me away from blogland and the garden for too long….But TG for physio and MRI machines…Still, I had to save my mobility and energy for family visits (new baby), a family trip to the Muskokas and a couple of eco dye classes that I gave in June. But I did keep taking pics of the June dye plants growing in nicely without me fussing; so here are some of them ( even though we are half way through July) along with a few samples of eco prints done by students in June:

Cotinus coggygria (R) with Rhus typhina (above R); nasturtiums in the wheelbarrow ( for hapazome) and dogwoods by the fence.

Front garden with the eco print star, red Japanese maple, probably “Bloodgood”

At this time of the year, this red leaved maple prints greens and purples. For complementary contrast, it is paired with yellow-primting sumac ( a student print).

And here is the Acer palmatum again, this time green, with red Coreopsis verticillata as colour complement, and yellows from baptisia as analagous colours.

Coiinus surprises in June, with red coreo for a bit of sizzle:

Iris always blue:

Tall bearded blue iris:

Baptisia australis: blue and purple blooms on the same plant! Fluorescent yellow from ththe leaves, deep blue stains from the little flowers:

This plant is NOT in my garden: Rhamnus cathartica (buckthorn) is an invasive non-native soo fair game for June foraging. Green from the berries, a trad dye plant in Europe. The local Buckthorn Police were happy that this Most Wanted on their list had been hunted down…

Japanese indigo ( Persicaria tinctoria): two overwintered plants that I layered and that consequently filled the whole planter: a plant with the will to live and leave a legacy; dye pot coming.

I still have loads of dried J. Indigo from last year, plus a 2014 vat that will get reactivated later this month:

The very well informed and generous mad dyers over at FB pageThe Wild Dyery have told us how we can get the vat going again.

Above are prints from a lichen solar dye pot that I started on my return from the Muskokas where I found huge rocks covered in umbilicaria (Rock Tripe) lichen, and which our B&B owners allowed me to gather.

The liquor looks like rich red wine at the moment; I shake it to areate the jar each day and I catch the dye drips on a piece of linen under the jars. The underside of the lichen is green when wet.

The umbilicaria, above. Not sure of the variety. FYI: The ethics of collecting lichen are in still in dispute. I feel comfortable having collected three small jars worth from over a large area on private property where a lot of the lichen has detached spontaneously from the rocks. The colour will fully develop in about six months.

A lovely print by expert linocut printmaker and teacher Deidre Hierlihy who took a little eco print instruction session from me this month; print on handmade Canal paper by Saint Armand. Smooshed blue aronia berries with Salvia officinalis (culinary sage) and rust prints.

One of my favourite wild flower scenes in the Muskokas: orange Indian paintbrush (talleja) backed by white clover and tall yellow hawksweed. Native peoples used the talleja for pigments according to Moerman ( see my refs page)

Last pic is of ME, dear Reader. I have been reluctant to show my face and be somewhat personal, but I know you perhaps wonder who is speaking to you and what I might look like. So here I am, dressed for the photo and right after I had my grey hair dyed…I cannot tell a lie, paper was not the only thing that got dyed in June… I got these great copper-oxidised earrings from the kids for Mother’s Day; the kids insisted I send them a pic with me wearing them; so I am daring to share it with you. The earrings were made by the very talented young jeweller artist Shane Cook, a grad of NSCAD. Behind me in the pic are some of my embroideries. A couple of these works will soon appear in a text book about modern textile art embroidery published by the Hong Kong Polytechnical University.

Next post will be in July!

 

Wendy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Eco printing the chuppah 5

My garden (the one the Bride grew up loving, but, er, not actually ever having worked in) has supplied all the plant materials (except Sweet Gum and Japanese Maple) for this collection of eco prints which were completed mostly last summer and fall. Some dried and frozen plant materials have been printed this winter. The USDA zone for an Ottawa garden is 4 while Canadian zone classification puts it at 5A, so taking garden micro-climates into account, one can make reasonable guesses about the range of dye plants comfortable here.

Sumac berries bundled in silk habotai

 

Rose leaves and tagetes marigold on lichen dyed vintage kimono silk fragment

Perennial geranium on silk habotai
Perennial geranium on silk habotai, modified by iron

 

Coreopsis verticillata (reds)and tagetes marigold calices and petals (greens and yellows) on silk habotai

Perennial geranium (yellow-greens), Golden Rod (yellows) and Red Cabbage (blues) on rusted silk habotai
Red Cabbage (blues) and tagetes marigold petals and calices (oranges and greens resp.) on silk habotai
Orange pekoe tea (blacks and browns), rooibos tea(rusts), safflower petals (yellows), Red Cabbage (blues) on silk habotai. All from the grocery store.
Purple Sandcherry and Purple Basil on silk broadcloth. Blues and greens.
Oak, Japanese Maple, Sweet Gum, Cotinus Coggygria (dark greens) and eucalyptus cinerea “Silver Dollar” (yellows) on silk broadcloth. No idea where that pink came from.

 

Note on the colours: I used a Canon Rebel SLR set at fully automatic, then the “enhance” in iPad photo edits. I find the colours very true to life.

Next time: If my new computer arrives this week, I can share some pics of the garden from last summer and fall. It is hidden under snow right now.

Eco printing the chuppah 2

Sorry folks – learning to use iPad with Blogsy for blogging…hmm..

Here are pics of plant materials I collected in Savannah and Charleston a few weeks ago; in the prints on the chuppah, they represent the Southland, home of the Groom:

Southern Magnolia

 

Camellia

Sweet Gum

Lichen fallen from Live Oaks…but what kind of lichen and how to process? Have to check Karen Diadick Casselman’s book “Lichen Dyes: The New Source Book”

Fig leaves from trees known in Israel, (the Groom’s spiritual -and one-time geographical – home), from a plant in my house:

…and Silver Dollar eucalyptus that printed the yellows and oranges shown below and in my last post:

…plus another type of eucalyptus (what kind?) gathered from a park in Tel Aviv:
A fig and eucalyptus bundle on silk organza:
These four silk organza bundles look yummy, like Vietnamese rice paper roll ups! The four finished panels (16″ x 72″) will form side flaps on the chuppah:
After unbundling, the eco prints on the silk panels looked like this:
And this is the eco print of the Sweet Gum, magnolia and camellia leaves (above) on silk dupioni

 

Next time: blue, blue, blue

 

Eco Printing with Lichen, Perennial Geranium, Purple Sandcherry and Saskatoon Berry

My first eco printed Art Cloth, a completed silk panel,  ready to hang, is “Forest Floor 1”.

  This panel was ec0 printed several times: first dyed bronze with lichen (forest floor refuse, lobaria pulmonaria most likely; photo below), then over printed with dried safflower petals (carthamus tinctorius, sold cheaply at mid East groceries as a saffron substitute). Most curiously , the safflower bleached out the bronze lichen dye to give pinkish-gold speckles wherever the dried safflower petals were in good, close contact with the textile. Following those two layers of colour and print were  Perennial Geranium (G. sanguineum) leaves,  Purple Sandscherry (Prunus Cistena) leaves and Saskatoon Berry (Amelanchier Alnifolia) leaves,  applied in succession to give a range of greens and even turquoises.  Detail 1:

and another detail shot of “Forest Floor”:

The colours of the leaves (above) applied in late summer/early fall and on top of lichen and safflower were quite different from colours printed by the same plants earlier in the summer and on cotton and linen: see images below.

Geranium in June on linen:

Purple Sandcherry (prunus cistena) in July on silk:

..and below: the Saskatoon Berry bush (amelanchier alnifolia) in July. The berries are in my freezer for dyeing or maybe jam and the leaves are turning flame-red-orange now that it’s October.

 The Saskatoon Berry bush in fall, sans berries. A green oval leaf shape is clearly printed on the Forest Floor panel. Wonder what colour the fall leaves will give?

 And here is perennial geranium on crochet-lace-trimmed cotton that was tannin dyed-mordanted and twice mordanted with alum. The lighter yellow-green comes from sumac leaves, my source of tannin in the alum-tannin-alum mordanting sequence required  pre-dye-bath for cottons and linens. The darker yellow print is the geranium leaf. 

 Finally, the lichen that started it all in this silk Art Cloth panel:  I am not sure of the name so am guessing lobaria pulmonaria.

…and the safflower petals that removed the bronze lichen dye to create little pink-yellow spots:

In the Mid East grocery where I buy the dried safflower petals, the label reads “American Saffron”. Jenny Dean’s book “Wild Colour” describes interesting dyes that come from safflower – both yellow and red-pink. http://www.jennydean.co.uk/wordpress/ Jenny’s description there partly  explains the pink and yellow dots that arrived on the bronze lichen silk but not why the lichen was bleached out by the safflower. That kind of dye chemistry that is beyond me.