Saturday, 24 September 2016

Madder Red ...

I received an open invitation to contribute to the Ethel Mairet Dye Project  - 'Dyeing Now' . A research project aiming to create and catalogue every natural dye recipe from Ethel Mairet's 1916 "Vegetable Dyes" publication.

I've always wanted to have a go at Madder red. So I chose Ethel's recipe 'Red for Cotton and linen', pg 105, and just as quickly abandoned it when I noticed 2oz Arsenic(!) in the ingredients list. I used the safer '3 step Alum and Tanin' mordanting method and cobbled together the Madder dye based on my own experience. 

Now then, I do chuckle when people use the words "Natural" and "Eco" when describing dyeing with plants. Any dyeing with plants needs to be undertaken with care and an understanding of which ingredients can be toxic. ( I steer clear of the toxic/ lethal ones!). 

Madder Reds and Pinks

Madder linens and leather. Madder was traditionally used to dye cricket balls

If you are interested in taking part in the project please do contact:

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

More Indigo (and a few things from my compost bin)

Golden Rod, Avocado, Onion and Walnut over dyed with Indigo ...

 Using up scraps of cloth and book trimmings ...

The smocked books are currently taking part in the From the Earth Exhibition exhibition.
Book scraps will be comng with me to Crafted by Hand, July 3rd

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Indigo saddened with walnut ... (and a little smocking)

I found this post lurking in my 'drafts' , I'm not sure why I didn't post it back in November? Probably because my head was down, producing stock ( a girl has got to eat). So here it is now ... a mere 6 months late. 

Friday, 1 January 2016

Welcoming 2016 ...

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year!!

2016 - Indigo Smocked Book 

Monday, 2 November 2015

Autumnal production ....

Autumn is all about production: books, dyes and most importantly; sloe gin and blackberry vodka. (... and unfortunately rather sore wrists, a condition that seems to impact other bookmakers at this time of year, see: paperiaarre.blogspot),

So here are a few of the books I made from September to October:

73 recycled leather books. Some have gone to Hawksbys, a delicious gallery located on the cobbled highstreet of Haworth, a short stroll from the home of the Bronte sisters. A batch have gone to Shire Hall Gallery in Staffordshire, Another batch is on its way to the gorgeous Gallery in Masham and I have saved a few for events later this month.

(there were smaller ones too ... but I can't locate the picture)

Vintage fabric books for the Craft Centre and Design Gallery, Leeds:

A new batch of ""My little linen books" for my very dear friend Jane Greenoff ... 

More envelope books  ( 21 to be precise) .... 

Several dress pattern books and lots of chortling over vintage suspenders ... 

... and a moment or two of luxurious time to play, to sadden Indigo with Walnut dye and to smock  

A few 'Recycled leather' books, dyed with indigo and walnut .... 

... and just enough time to make a teeny tiny "match box book" ... 

Onwards into November, the month of exhibitions, events and topping up my Folksy shop

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Matchbox Book ....

The opportunity to make another piece of  "Matchbox art",  to raise funds for the Yorkshire childrens' cancer charity  Candle Lighters  .... I couldn't resist!  

Exhibitors at this Novembers Crafted by Hand have been asked to make pieces of art that will fit in a matchbox. Visitors to the event will be able to vote for their favourite/s and buy them too, proceeds will go to the wonderful Candlelighters and the winner receives a prize from craft-and-design-magazine.

...  so, using scraps of Indigo dyed fabric and paper,  I made a 'Matchbox book' or is it a 'Book in a matchbox'?

... and a few photos of my process

Here is one I made for the same charity a couple of years ago: Avocado in a Matchbox

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Slow Stitch ...

The most beautiful book arrived in the post today! I am beyond excited to have my "Darned Books" featured in it, thank you Claire Wellesley- Smith (Clarabella) !!! ... right, time to calm down and savour this thing of beauty ...

The book is available : here
I'm still trying to work out how to link previous blog posts, in the meantime you are welcome to click on the links below