Indigo Dyeing Day

March in North Texas is a beautiful month.  Cool nights, warm days and a bit of rain now and then.  Perfect time of year to go into the garage and do some dyeing!

Kay invited the members of NTAQ over for a shibori/indigo dyeing day.  At the January meeting she asked us to stitch patterns on white prepared for dyeing (PFD) fabric before we arrived to dye, a type  of shibori called nui shibori.  A simple running stitch is used on the cloth and then pulled tight to gather the fabric.  If the fabric is pulled tight enough, the dye cannot penetrate the stitched areas and you get a lovely pattern.

I decided to create a circle and line pattern.  I stitched my fabric:

And then I gathered the threads:
Kay prepared the indigo vat before we arrived, using pre-reduced indigo crystals.  Much easier than boiling the indigo plants themselves.  The liquid was a lovely dark green, with a "flower" of gloppy blue indigo on top:
She skimmed off the flower and we got to work.  Each piece was dipped multiple times:
It was so much fun!  The pieces came out of the vat a lovely green color and turned indigo blue as the fabric oxided.  It's like magic!
We dyed a lot of fabric.  Each of us dyed our pre-stitched piece, and then we tried some other techniques.  Clamping with c-clamps or clothespins, rolling the fabric around a rope, folding and rubber banding and even tying the fabric around a slinky.  It was a blast! 
I am so pleased with the pieces I dyed.  The top piece was fan folded and clamped with clothespins.  The bottom piece is my stitched circle and line piece:
These three were rubber banded.  Using many rubber bands:
The top piece was folded and clamped between two wooden rectangles.  The bottom was wrapped and tied around a rope:
At the end of the day we were tired but happy:
Thanks, Jaye, for taking the selfie!
I'm off to order some pre-reduced indigo from Dharma right now!  I can't wait to try indigo again.

I'm linking this post with Nina-Marie's Off the Wall Friday, Confessions of a Fiber Addict and Crazy Mom Quilts Finish it up Friday.  Go see all the wonderful work there!


Mary Kirwin said…
Lovely! Hello all you gals!
Heather Pregger said…
Hi back at you, Mary!
Pam Frazier said…
I’m going to have to try this in the summer. Early one morning. Looks like lots of fun!