Archives for posts with tag: dyeing

Yesterday, Isa and I had a very nice ending to a day of bad news. We headed up to the American Folk Art Museum for the Fashion Lab in Process panel discussion “Re-Made in America” moderated by Daria Dorosh and featuring a wonderful group of speakers:

Sarah Scaturro, the textile conservator at the Cooper Hewitt; Eileen Fisher; Melissa Kirgin and Xing-Zhen Chung Hilyard of Eko-Lab; Meiling Chen of Fearless Dreamer; Jose Martinez; Gayil Nalls; Despina Papadopoulos; Sabine Seymour; and presenters from Shima Seiki (creator of WHOLEGARMENT knitting machine)

The discussion was meant to examine the future of fashion, and exploring what the next evolution for fashion will be, and whether or not sustainable practices are compatible with technology and further advancements.

The conversation was very interesting, and I attribute this to the wide variety of speakers and backgrounds, as well as great questions coming from Daria Dorosh, founder of FLiP (Fashion Lab in Process) While the conversation went through all the most pertinent topics related to sustainability in fashion, and how possible it is, I was happy that the main idea that came out of the discussion was that it would not be one thing that could save us all, it will be a combination over time — but the key will be to take the developments and educate the consumer.

So many interesting things were touched upon like the WHOLEGARMENT knitting machines, and an interactive app being developed by Jose Marinez that would provide tags in clothing that will pull up vital background information on the garment.

I was also so happy to finally meet Daria, who will be participating in the upcoming Earth Day event with Abigail Doan, and learn more about FLiP:


(EkoLab deconstructions for FLiP)

“Fashion Lab in Process, (FliP™) is a new company created and directed by Fashion Institute of Technology, NY, educator and artist, Daria Dorosh, PhD.

FliP™ uses a public performance process to communicate a sustainable design philosophy with a
social responsibility agenda that addresses the current state of the fashion world and beyond.

The concept behind FliP™ is to bring designers and customers together through a creative retail experience. FliP™ presents fashion surrounded by video, art and performance to celebrate its reconstructed, repurposed, don’t-waste-anything aesthetic. The public is invited to join in the fun, watch a garment makeover, and walk away with a unique fashion purchase.

FliP™ will demonstrate how mass produced fashion can be made sustainable by being transformed into one- of-a-kind fashions through a process that re-values garments and involves the public in a unique fashion experience.

Fashion Lab in Process is ready to share its novel concept and program that increases
opportunities for young designers. To find out how this can be done for retailers who would like a FliP™ fashion makeover in their store, please contact Daria Dorosh, Director.” – (www.fashionlabinprocess.com)

Which brings me to the plug : )

Help us get you educated — join us Sunday, February 13, 1-4PM for a Fashion Week Mending Brunch!

(Courtesy Dr.X’s Free Associations, Lewis W. Hine)
  • Bring (1) item from your closet that needs some TLC
  • TAC staff will help you transform it through dyeing, screen printing, and sewing
  • Go home happy with something brand “new”!

rsvp@textileartscenter.com

Both Ikat Weaving and Natural Dyeing classes have kicked off.But don’t be sad if you missed these opportunities to get started on the art of dyeing. There is more! We still have spaces open on our Fiber Reactive Dyes Class in March.

Don’t get turned off by the name.. we’re not tricking you into a Chemistry 101 Class. Fiber reactive dyes (aka Procion dyes) are actually one of the simplest dyes available. They were developed in 50s, specially for cellulosic fibers (such as cotton, linen, hemp and rayon) but can be used also with wool, silk and nylon, just with a different twist on the procedure.

Whats makes these dyes so special? First they don’t need a fixative, mordant or to be set. The dye, as the name says, reacts directly with the fiber, forming a permanent bond, that is both wash and lightfast. The dyeing process can occur with lower temperatures (yes, no hot baths!) and it uses a minimal quantity of water, making them one of the most eco-friendly dyes available. They’re great for tie-dye, printing, batik, painting of fabric and the colors are bright, bright, bright.

Still not convinced?! Check the next amazing examples..

Hand dyed fabric with Procion dyes, by Vicky Welsh

Tie dyed top with Procion Dyes, by Shabd

Hand dyed with Procion dyes and snow dye technique, by DyeSmithy

Hand dyed cotton perle, by Sassa Lyne

At the Fiber Reactive Dye Class we’ll cover the principles of dyeing with Procion dyes and several techniques, such as tie-dye (but much more than your high school tie-dye), low immersion, painting, snow dye, resists, etc.. Or, in less words, you’ll acquire all the skills to become a real-deal dyer.

 

In his latest book, “At Home”, Bill Bryson has dedicated a whole, enormously entertaining and informative chapter to the dressing room. Through the recounting of the history of this room, Bryson discusses some of the most decidedly exotic fashion trends of the Victorian era and earlier.

In his lively and engaging way, Bryson suggests that, “it can seem as if the whole impulse of fashion has been to look maximally ridiculous. If one could be maximally uncomfortable as well, the triumph was all the greater.”

Because it is impossible to paraphrase Bryson in a way that is more witty or lovely, I will simply include an excerpt of this chapter starting with the discussion on the surprisingly irrational trend of male wig-wearing starting in the 1660’s that lasted for 150 years.

“Wigs might be made of almost anything- human hair, horsehair, cotton thread, goat hair, silk. One maker advertised a model made of fine wire. They came in many styles- bag, bob, campaign, grizzle, Ramillies, cauliflower, brown tie, riding bob, and more, all denoting some crucial difference in length of braid or bounciness of curl. Wigs were so valuable – a full one could cost 50 pounds – that they were left in wills. The more substantial the wig, the higher up the social echalon one stood- one became literally a bigwig. Wigs were also one of the first things snatched by robbers.

All wigs tended to be scratchy, uncomfortable, and hot, particularly in summer. To make them more bearable, many men shaved their heads, so we should be surprised to see many famous seventeenth- and eighteenth- century figures as their wives saw them first thing in the morning. It was an odd situation. For a century and a half, men got rid of their own hair which was perfectly comfortable, and instead covered their heads with something foreign and uncomfortable. Very often it was actually their own hair made into a wig. People who couldn’t afford wigs tried to make their own hair look like a wig”

This all sounds particularly funny because the victims of the fashion trend are men like Benjamin Franklin and George Washington, men who built the social and legal structure of this country. Men of gravity and importance who it seems, made time to fret about the beauty and trendiness of their hair. The susceptibility to follow an irrational trend makes them seem almost too human. It’s rattling to think that the founding fathers’ judgment is not beyond reproach, at least where hairstyle is concerned.

Although this sensitivity to the fashion of the times seems like a weakness, upon deeper consideration it shows a kind of personal commitment to social and cultural cohesion that is necessary to form a united whole, or social unit, like a country. After all, fashion trends often carry in them a political statement, and are by nature faithfully democratic.

We’re starting our Spring Classes series next Tuesday and I couldn’t be more excited. Amongst the wide range of classes that we’re offering, I want to tell you today about the Shibori class.

Shibori, now a universal term, is the Japanese word for manipulating fabric before dyeing (the word is derived from the Japanese root verb shiboru, which means to “wring, squeeze, press”) (…) in Shibori for Textile Artists, by Janice Gunner

(photo courtesy of HonestlyWTF)

The Shibori technique dates back to between 6th and 8th century in Japan (the earliest known example of shibori dyed cloth dates back to the 8th century). Indigo was the main dye used, to pattern hemp, cotton and silk.

(photo courtesy of HonestlyWTF)

There are several folding, binding, twisting, stitching techniques that have been used and all have specific names. Like Kanobo shibori, for the typical  tie-dye, Arashi (Japanese for “storm”) shibori, a pole-wrapping technique, Kumo shibori, pleat and bond resist technique, and Itajime shibori, a shape-resist technique where the cloth is folded like an accordion and sandwiched between two pieces of wood.

Shibori Master Motohiko Katano (1889-1975) (top) and Shibori dyed cloth (bottom)

(photos courtesy of shiboriorg.wordpress.com)

There are still a few spots available for the Shibori class starting on January 8th, so don’t miss this opportunity to come to TAC to learn the secrets of this ancient dye technique. And as inspiration for the products and fabrics that you can create, I leave you with some gorgeous fashion creations..

Suno Shibori Tie Dye Scarf Jacket, Spring/Summer 2010

(via CoolSpotters)

Shibori dyed top, by Brooklyn based Upstate, Spring/Summer 2011

Shibori dyed scarf, by Brooklyn based Upstate, Spring/Summer 2011

(via HonestlyWTF)

Tali Weinberg is an awesome fiber artist, weaver, dyer, blogger and TAC’s friend living in Brooklyn. Tali’s work entitled “The males have wings while it is the females whose bodies are crushed to extract their red dye. But red is also the color of the sun” is about cochineal.

Cochineal is a tiny tiny bug that lives on cactus throughout most of all Central South America and that yields a beautiful red dye when crushed. Cochineal has been used as a dye for almost 2000 years by Precolumbian peoples. As a dye it has the extraordinary ability of shifting is color from orange to purple, just by changing the pH of the dye bath, from acidic to more alkaline, respectively.

 

 

 

 

 

Women collecting cochineal in Peru , from the cactus (left) and cochineal bugs dried (right) – images courtesy of Turkey Red Journal

Different shades obtained with cochineal with different mordants and pHs

(image courtesy of Jean Dean’s Wild Color)

However, Tali’s work isn’t only about cochineal. As Talis describes it “This particular piece refers to the maquiladoras (sweatshops), the violence against women they have fueled, and existing alternatives – and it relies on your participation to be complete.”

(images courtesy of Tali Weinberg)

This woven blanket was part of  a show to raise awareness about violence in Juarez, Mexico, in September. It was showed again this month in Queens, at Thalia Theater.

For several months Tali dyed ten thousands of yards of organic cotton, silk and wool with cochineal and used it to weave blankets and pillows. Here’s the video that documents all the process:

“This process of making contains a dual metaphor. It is a visualization of the violence that often lies behind the products we consume (even objects made for our own comfort and security). It is simultaneously a visualization of an alternative: a hand production process that brings together producer and consumer and that has thoughtfully considered the network of people and materials that make up the production of this particular object of comfort and intimacy.”

Cochineal was used extensively in Peru during the Precolumbian and Colonial times and his still used today in traditional fiber arts, as Owyn and I had the chance to see while there. And the process of dyeing today with cochineal in Peru, or the one that Tali used, is still the same that produced this red and vibrant color 1000 years ago:

Detail of coca bag, Peru, Moche culture, 5th-6th century, Metropolitan Museum of Art collection. The image is also the cover of Elena Phips’ overview on cochineal distribution and use throughout the world “Cochineal Red – The Art History of a Color”, published by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2010.

(image courtesy of Metropolitan Museum of Art)


Remember to submit your ideas or stories for | By You | to blog@textileartscenter.com; any idea is welcomed with open arms.

Today’s post comes from the Dye Lab of the Textile Arts Center.

About the Dye Lab:  The Dye Lab houses the Textile Arts Center’s synthetic and natural dyes. It is also the proud new home of our industrial drying rack, working table, and all the dyeing materials necessary to turn that dingy, white cloth into a stunning cobalt blue.

We are very conscientious that textiles have a huge carbon footprint on our environment. Part of our mission is to provide training and promote “slow” and sustainable textile production methods, by teaching traditional textile arts techniques and encouraging the use of natural dyes and fibers.

Besides using natural materials, other way to promote sustainable textile and fashion practices is to try to re-use and re-purpose what you already have. One way to give a total new twist to a old skirt or make those 10 yards of ugly brown fabric useful is achieved simply by dyeing it. We believe that dyeing can and should be eco-conscientious and sustainable, and we’re taking those principles in account while equipping our dye lab.

We also have an on-going collaboration with the community garden on our block, where we grow plants and flowers that can be used successfully as dyes. We’re trying as much as possible to use the dyes obtained from the garden, in our classes/workshops and in our products. We’re also especially interested in promoting the use of natural dyes that can be easily (and cheaply) found at any garden or farmer’s market in our community and we have exciting collaborations with the Brooklyn Botanic Garden and Brooklyn Skillshare happening this month.

Plus, dyeing is fun!

For all these reasons and because there are “some costs” associated with having a state-of-the-art dye lab, here comes our second kickstarter campaign!

It was another successful party at the Textile Arts Center September 17th.  So successful that the guests began to encircle the Raya Brass Band so that they couldn’t leave the venue and stop playing their feet-stepping music.

The exhibition is beautiful, and if you were unable to view all the pieces you should stop by anytime between Mon-Fri from 10am-6pm to walk around and take all the art in.

left: “Creatures- Strength, Wisdom, Trust” — Virginia Fitzgerald

middle: “Nobody” — Sierra Furtwangler (Mixed Media)

right: “RB Dress” — Margarita Mileva (Rubber Bands)

“The Weavers Bench” — Andrea Donnelly (Warp Painted, Hand-Woven Cotton)

“Chlorobionta” — Lucia Lavilla Havelins (Needlepoint and Beading)

“(Untitled) rocks” — Emily Barletta (Embroidery, Felting)

“Plastic in Trees” — Julia Kornblum (Weaving)

left: “Dream Home Sweet Home (Mature Landscape)” — Jennifer Hunold (Hand Embroidered)

right: “Bill Cosby” — Amanda Tiller (Embroidery)

“Cover” — Luke Haynes (Quilting)

“Seven Houses Never At Home” — Mallory Feltz (Hand -Warped Yarn)

“Conciliate” — Janice Jakielski (Porcelain and Mixed Media)

Title Unknown — Suyeon Na

“Creatures – Strength, Wisdom, Trust” — Virginia Fitzgerald (Organic Crochet)

“Self Portrait with Son” — Leslie Schomp (Hand-stitched with Hair, Nylon and Thread)

“Martina” — Cayce Zavaglia (Hand Embroidery)

“Beer Pong” — Erin M. Riley (Hand Woven Tapestry with Hand Dyed Wool)

“(Untitled)” — Tod Hensley (Hand Embroidery)

“Knit together in that Secret Place” — Meredith Re Grimsley (Hand Embroidery and Beading)

“Sewn Home” — Alisha McCurdy (Hand Embroidery and Color Photograph)

“Bounty” — Rebecca Ringquist (Machine and Hand Stitching on Found Cloth)

**Pictures provided by Roland Kielman

Cutting Edge has many more artists being shown and other works done by some of the artists you see here.  Stop by any time between Monday-Friday from 10:00am-6:00pm to see all the art in person.  It really is quite an experience.

Cutting Edge (Showing until October 11)

Curated by: Joetta Maue

Artist Talk on October 8th at 7pm (must RSVP at rsvp@textileartscenter.com with subject “Artist Talk” to reserve a seat)

First workshop with Brooklyn Krafthaus was fantastic! Huge thanks to Esther and Christina…

Harvest Dyeing Images

Everyone was able to hand dye their own fibers outside in the yard, nice fall weather. Hopefully we will get to see what everyone makes with their yarn and roving! If you attended please send pictures.. : )

We have another workshop coming up in November — it will combine weaving and sculpture. More info soon..

Happy fall, everyone!

http://www.textileartscenter.com