Join us for a virtual workshop with Kim Eichler-Messmer on “Machine Sewn Shibori with Indigo and Natural Dyes.”
Textile artists around the world have been using shibori techniques to create patterns, marks, and imagery on cloth for thousands of years. We will expand on this tradition with the use of a sewing machine to create intricate geometric patterns and machine sewn shibori. We will experiment with the technique using small pieces of fabric dyed in indigo and then expand on our practice by going bigger and adding in cutch, iron, and optional foraged dyes to add layers of color and depth to our designs. Rather than finishing a project, participants will create a number of studies that will be suitable for use in a wide variety of sewing projects.
The workshop includes tannin dyes, iron and mordant for mordanting cellulose fibers. You may add your own foraged dyes or other dyes of your choice. Indigo ingredients are not included in the workshop materials and we have included a link to the information on how to calculate the amount of indigo needed for your vat.
Take advantage of this opportunity to consider making a runner for your holiday table (or gift your favorite hostess!)
Did you see Kim present on FEEDBACK FRIDAY? Watch here!
International students are welcome in this workshop. Please register by October 1 so we may send your materials on time.
Kim Eichler-Messmer was a Feedback Friday guest recently and I was enchanted by the mysterious and intricate imagery that Kim created using a sewing machine, indigo and a few simple tannin dyes. The results were so intriguing! I invite you to work with Kim over a Friday and Saturday to add these techniques to your indigo practice.
This class will be held via Zoom Friday October 22 and Saturday 23, 10am-1pm Pacific time both days. A video recording of the workshop is available to participants for 30 days after the workshop. Please note that registrations are one person per registration fee. We appreciate your understanding.
Class details and prerequisites
You will need to have a working 5 gallon (or larger) 1-2-3 style indigo vat available for this workshop. Kim recommends a 5 gpl iron or fructose vat so that you can dye medium to dark shades and create shaded contrasts. We will not have time in this workshop to instruct you how to create a vat but will link to the instructions you would need to make your own vat.
You will provide Fabric + Sewing Supplies:
– 2 yards of undyed woven cotton, linen, or hemp fabric, scoured. I recommend cotton quilting fabric, kona cotton, essex linen (a cotton/linen blend) or any other woven cellulose fabric that isn’t too heavy) We also offer Botanical Colors Kala ecru cotton 40s. This fabric is beautifully suited for the machine stitched technique.
It will be helpful to pre-cut one of the yards of fabric into the following pieces (see diagram below):
(8) 6” squares
(4) 12” squares
(4) 10” x 18” rectangles
– A sewing machine, preferably with a walking foot or even feed foot (don’t stress if you don’t have one, but it will make the process easier and allow you to sew larger pieces of fabric). Walking feet are specific to your sewing machine and this site has walking feet for many popular models.
– Sewing machine needles
– 1 spool of cotton or polyester sewing thread (whatever you use for piecing or regular sewing)
– 1 spool of rayon sewing thread, wound onto a bobbin. Rayon thread is available at your local sewing store or online at JoAnn (Sulky brand).
– Ruler or straight edge
– Fabric marking tool. You can use fabric marking pens and pencils or tailor’s chalk available at your local sewing store or online at JoAnn.
– Seam ripper
– A couple of small pieces of muslin or scrap fabric (sized somewhere between 4” x 6” or 8” x 10”)
You will supply the following Dye ingredients and please have your vat balanced and ready for dipping the day of the workshop.
– 5-gallon or larger indigo vat
-Household distilled vinegar – you will need about 2 ounces (56ml).
You will need the following Dye Equipment for the workshop.
– Gram scale
– small containers and spoons for measuring dyes
– A couple of empty buckets or bowls
– Access to water
– Long-handled spoons / tongs
– Stove or portable burner
– Dust mask
– Dye gloves
-Tarp or coverings to protect tables and floor, if needed.
Making an Indigo Vat
If you need to purchase the ingredients for an indigo vat, below are the ingredients to make a fructose, iron, or henna vat using the 1-2-3 method. If you are making a 5 gpl vat for this workshop, you’ll need to purchase approximately 100 grams indigo, 250 grams calcium hydroxide and 500 grams of fructose, henna or iron for a 17 liter or 4.5 gallon sized vat.
The actual amounts you will need of each ingredient based on a 17 liter vat are:
- Fructose Vat – Indigo 85 g, calcium hydroxide 170 grams and fructose 255 grams.
- Iron Vat – Indigo 85 grams, Iron 170 grams and calcium hydroxide 255 grams
- Henna Vat – Indigo 85 grams, calcium hydroxide, 170 grams and Henna 255 grams.
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