Thursday, November 3, 2016

Julia Voake gave us a wealth of information on Eco Dyeing, Printing and Working with Rusty objects on Fabric

These are the books Julia recommended for the processes she uses.  She has one of her pieces published in the "Fiber Art Album" book. 

Julia started out talking about Rusted Metal on Fabric.

The fabric is first soaked in vinegar water. She said the pieces will continue to rust even after they have been washed, there is not much you can do about that.

Overly Rusted piece

The little grey spots are Sumac Berries

Fun Metal Patterns,  Sumac Berry Juice

Mason Jar Lids

Iron Fry Pan

Favorite Brake pad and Rust Dust

The 3 pictures above are examples of how Julia uses the rusted fabric for finished pieces. Wonderful.

Julia's converse shoes were custom made from a picture of her rusted fabric by Converse.  

Julia showed how she tied the fabric on a rusty tube, carefully took it off and what the result is after 6 days of  being on the tube. Amazing.

Eco Dyeing and Printing

Her basic instructions include using a stainless steel pot, white vinegar, small pieces of rusty metal, leaves, strong cotton to tie, durable gloves. The "Eco Colour" Book by India Flint is a good book for inspiration.  The "Wild Color" Book by Jenny Dean has lots of recipes.

Red Maple Leaves on silk

Yellow Onion Skins and Sumac Berries

Walnut Tree Leaves

Wool Fabric which she just tore the strips and let it fray

Eucalyptus Leaves

Wool and Rayon blend, soaked in alum, sprayed with vinegar water

Wool Felt from Fields

Also wool felt, the yellowish color is caused by the iron in her water.
All water will react differently.

 This is the beautiful piece that is in the "Fiber Art Almanac" Book.  She also won a ribbon and the Judge's Choice Award in the West Michigan Quilt Guild.

This is the back, dyed with walnuts.

Julia showing us a finished scarf ready to be removed from tube
2" PVC pipe that she uses

Depending on the fabric, silk or wool, Julia soaks in alum  or vinegar and water.
She then lays out the piece, leaves on top, sumac berries, spray with vinegar water, sprays with
sumac juice, then rolls all of it very, very tightly on the pipe.  She then ties it very tightly, using gloves to pull.
 Julia puts it in a pot to boil for 3 hours with a 50/50 vinegar solution.

Here she is taking the leaves off the scarf.

Seeing the finished project is always fun.  She never knows how fabrics will take the dye from the leaves.

Making cards on paper from the printed leaves is another of Julia's projects.

Her process for making cards involves a layering process of alum soaked paper and leaves.  They are then pressed between two heavy pieces of cardboard or wood and tied very tightly with string. The picture above shows her taking apart some of the still wet paper cards.  After they are tied, the sandwich is placed in a pan of water either to be steamed or placed directly in the water with a brick on top to hold it down.

Show and Tell

Margaret wore a wonderful jacket made out of an old tablecloth with designs made from rusted metal.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Nov. 2 meeting will be on "Eco Dyeing and Printing"

Fiber    Arts    Guild    

Byron Center, Michigan – The Lakeshore Fiber Arts Guild’s next meeting will be on Wed., Nov. 2, featuring Julia Voake on “Eco Dyeing and Printing, at the Holland Area Arts Council, 150 East 8th St., Holland, MI 49423, starting promptly at 6:30pm with social time beginning at 6pm.  Non-members are asked to pay $5 toward the speaker’s fee.

Eco dyeing and printing are two terms that refer to a process of using natural plants and minerals to add color and pattern to fabrics.  A technique that is almost as old as man, it has resurfaced among contemporary fiber artists and spread worldwide with the publishing of the book Eco Colour by India Flint.  Julia Voake will talk about the process of dyeing and printing fabric and paper using this technique as well as having many samples of her work and a demonstration of the process.

The Lakeshore Fiber Arts Guild invites anyone interested in the textile fiber arts to their monthly program meetings held the first Wednesday of each month at the Holland Area Arts Council.  For more information, visit the guild’s blog at or contact or 616-878-1526.

Digital images attached:  Julia Voake’s 1) “Home is Where the Heart is…But Grow Where You’re Planted” wallpiece  2) greeting cards