Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Quality time and passion 悠遊日子

 Quality time for me is........ doing whatever I like and wherever I want to......
Take a newly printed table cloth to the beach....... assuming it's my backyard......... 
我的小小工作室附近的海灘尤如我的 "後海灣 ", 我可以隨時隨地拿著製作聽著浪濤, 拍拍照, 賞賞景. 這日和母親在工作室悠然嚐茶, 細味生活, 這是我享受的環境.
Or enjoying a cup of  tea in my  tiny studio with mum, each with own tea set made by me years ago.  That's our pleasant time !

 Last week on our way for mum's birthday lunch we passed by a slope with lots blown off eucalyptus leaves. I collected some for eco prints
 Impatient me immediately done a piece with the leaves for the table cloth
 The fabric may serve as table cloth or any decoration.
Natural prints looks good for the coffee table and the small chair with eucalyptus prints.
This is how I made the prints on the blend silk first stained with indigo blue
Then laid some eucalyptus and a few casaurina

 Two to three folds and bundle boiled for 1.5 hous
After boiling,  dipped in indigo for the blue
 Let dry then wash
The leaves soaked in iron water thus brownish
My indigo is not that strong and after washing it looks silver grey
Leaves prints still bold over grey-blue background

The day I went to the beach near my studio for the shots was calm with tides
 A little harvest for the fishman....... He caught some small fish and sun drying on the stones.

On the way back to the studio, one caterpillar moving slowing...... soon will be a butterfly. On the side way there's a butterfly with broken wing struggling to fly.
Life is too short with uncertainty.  That's life cycle for living things and human from born to death.

 Going on my way back to the studio, there's a small broken chair disposed.  Seems still belongs to someone.  If it's mine, I would amend it to a new life.
 Just like this chair I took from a waste station and refurbished it with the eco printed fabric. I'm happy to own the new life of the used furniture (last post of refurbishment) .  Now it's my comfortable chair in the little corner.
This is a ceramic pot, a Christmas gift from a NGO where I taught workshops. It goes well with the tone of the eco printed table cloth. 
I had a pleasant time with this set in the beach next to my studio. I take it  my "backyard" !  I can go whenever I like !

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Eco-print and upcycling to brand new tote bag making 換然一新的袋子製作

The tote bag is made with swatches of my natural eco-prints on both sides.  This side is cotton. 
一片舊綿衣布, 一片絲料子, 印上植物染, 攜著個人風格袋逛街去.
This side is silk
A piece of used cotton Tee making the second skin of a tote bag. Both sides of natural prints make the textile art.

Lining with linen, inside pockets and room enough for the big reference books

or a grocery bag for happy shopping

The making of the tote bag started with the eco-prints on the fabric. 

I cut off a scrap of my father's old cotton Tee

 With iron mordant the cotton then placed a few eucalyptus, mulberry leaves and casaurina
Covered with another scrap of soy milk mordant cotton and bundle boiled for 1.5 hours for the mirror prints

 Prints on cotton is dark with iron mordant as what I expected looks like ink painting
The other mirror print on soy milk mordant cotton is red with euc but mulberry is blurred.  
This scrap will be used for other project later.

 This is the "before & after" of cotton Tee prints

 The other side of the tote bag is silk printed with this sort of unknown leaves

 I sewed the tote bag with swatches of the experiments

To make use of other "not quite good" eco-printed swatches, the straps are part of them.
Finished with the approval of Mogi
Seems he's rather curious of the outside world

 Well, a tote bag up cycled with used cotton Tee is now a brand new one for my shopping

Doing eco-prints with textile is fun.  You can create your unique fabric prints. I've the instant download tutorial of making "Botanical imprints" available on my Etsy on line shop.
Mogi, "it's a sunny day, I'm sun bathing. Have a good day !"

Monday, December 21, 2015

My overseas enthusiastic student 熱誠的海外學生

Six weeks ago I was approached by a Singaporean girl for the interest of wool felting.  She said she was referred by a member of IFA (International Feltmakers Association) while she was in London with the impressive wool felt. She particularly wanted to make a wool felt hat and a scarf.   Since she lives in the sup-tropical region she would like a light cobweb scarf and a hat with pleats. After a few back and forth emails communication we made it happen. This week my Singapore student Ada flown in and made under my tutelage this set of hat and scarf.
我的遠道而來星加玻學生, 開朗燦爛的笑容, 在寒流下也暖我心窩, 兩日的學習, 她完成了這帽子與圍巾.

Since last time I learnt from Natalya Brashovetska the wool felt boots I found the wool batt of Austrian mountain sheep are great for sturdy hats making so I ordered 5kg  from the Germany supplier Schafwollen. Just arrived, Mogi already occupied the batt  and I also immediately made a sample hat for Ada's reference before she came.

The days while Ada was in Hong Kong the temperature dropped to 14C, it's the coldest this year.  We could not work outdoor.  We worked on the dining table with easy setting.  First cut the foam template of Ada's size.......... with Mogi's good company.......
Ada laid the wool batt........ after procedures of rolling, rubbing, shaping.......

Day one Ada finished the hat and happy with it.

The following day started the making of a scarf. I wanted to teach Ada a few techniques on one piece so one end laid the merino wool for cobweb and pines effect.   In the middle part, put wool around a crocheted heart shape  while the other end with a chiffon for nuno felt

So a piece of merino scarf with a big crocheted red heart, a small dark blue heart and a few Teeswater fleece for the textural surface

The scarf of purple shades with yarn strings and mulberry for the textures look
A freestyle scarf with the wool felt flower ring closure

It's light in a breezy day 


With Ada's enthusiasm,  cheerful character with laughs, the one-on-one teaching never boring.
Ada's 2-day learning of a wool felt hat with pleats and a scarf of nuno felt &cobweb was fun. 

Thank you for coming Ada.  I'm glad you're the one from Singapore enjoyed the versatility of wool.

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