Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Natural printed garments of knots "結結實實"的植物印染成衣

How many natural prints, contact prints, eco prints fabrics I have made? I have no idea but not less than 100 yards since I ever encountered this amazing fabric arts. All those fabrics of course not all up to my expectation.   Oh no, I can't say "expectation" as we can not expect too much the outcome of this sort of natural prints.   We should appreciate the natural outcome and enjoy the process.   I have made some nuno felting with those fabrics and lots gave away to friends or sold.   I have a good record for all my experiments and teaching of natural prints / dyes.  My pdf eco-prints tutorial since listed in ETSY four months  have sold numerous copies, that's very encouraging.  I have to say the money earned is just good for me to buy more fabrics for experiments and good for my travels to learn more and chances for interaction overseas.

Here's a series of garments made with my natural prints, simply sewed and tied knots.

 Casaurina and camellia printed in Israel on silk jersey  (before & after images)
 Sewed with another natural printed chiffon with neckline and arm holes.  Width from left to right is 42", that's the width of fabric.  Just sewed the shoulder and waist lines without cutting a scrap.
 Back prints of chiffon with onion skins dyed in turmeric bath for an hour.
 Simply a free size blouse with a few straight lines sewed
 Back of the printed chiffon is a bit longer so I sewed with little folds on both waist. 
 Front of silk jersey drapes well and the back of chiffon drapes lightly
 Tie a knot on one waist bottom
                                                     Front and back

 Style of two knots
Make it a wrap or scarf from the blouse
That's the multi-styled blouse / scarf / wrap

Another garment, the loose pants made with assorted testing prints 

 A simple free size pant with a few panels all sewed together without measurement,
 without cutting a scrap, just tie the knots on both bottoms, that's it.

                                    My set of loose garment this summer.

I am not good in fashion design and wish to explore the alchemy of botanical prints.  That's why I wanted to learn from brilliant artists Irit Dulman and Revital Avidar for another level of garments from nature in the coming days.

Thank you for those who have bought my pdf natural prints tutorial.  Anyone who likes to view the link, here it is.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Accidental creation inspiration 偶然的創作靈感

 I love nature and cows. Being brought up in the suburb but moved to town for decades. Every Friday I go hiking with a team. I wanted to leave much footprints all over our stunning mountains in Hong Kong.  While doing hiking I observe and admire all living things, cows, butterflies, plants....... so as to get inspired for my creations.
The contact prints from casaurina and wool felt cow just done after my outing last Friday.

 Originally our team for hiking last Friday was up to a mountain, however at the time to start walking it's pouring. The torrential rain forced us to call it off. In the early morning I traveled long to the assembly on Lantau but just to cancel the hiking due to poor weather was a pity.  I decided to spend some time on the island by reading, listening to the rain and enjoying my cappu in the cafe.   Rain stopped after a while. I changed my mind to board on a bus to Shui Hau Village where the sandbay is famous for clams digging and the wild roaming cows.  The pictures below speak themselves how it looks.........
本是在大嶼山遠足, 在集合點出發時突然瀑雨, 行程被迫取消, 一埸老遠來到東涌, 唯有在咖啡店看看小說, 聽雨聲.  雨稍停, 我便前往車程不遠的水口村, 那裡的廣闊泥灘及逍遙的牛群是我想一睹的景色, 此行沒因壞天氣而失望, 那景致美極而且給我一點創作靈感.
 一小撮的馬尾松回家做了植物印染, 可愛羊毛氈做的牛牛是下周教學的題材.

Overview of Shui Hau Village

 Walking on the long beach
 Birds, cows....... forms the beautiful view
 Buffalo ad birds

 With a buffalo approaching me on the left
 A family... ...... a calf of a few days old
 Bird on the buffalo
 Feeding time
 Tides out
 After some time in the bay I headed to other side of the island where the casaurina caught my sight.
 Came to mind I got a little for contact prints........

 Back home immediately done a piece on silk with a few stokes of pines,  cones and onion skins.   I'm impatient.  An hour boiling can do what I want. Opened the bundle with nice outcome on silk.
 As next week I will have another wool felt session.  Students asked if I could teach them 3D animals.  Why not?   I made samples.  Cow making idea from the ones seen in the village. I cut a foam, layered wool with enclosed resist.  Some rubbing and rolling, took off the resist and stuffed with remnant from other projects.
 Stuffed full, tied with my scrap dyed with cochinael. It's done!
 My stuffed Mogi loves it.
That's the inspiration from outing.
 Contact prints from casaurina with cones are impressive.
 It may not looks like a cow, no matter it looks like a dog, it's fun to play with wool.
 In the coming weeks I'll teach a group of students to explore the versatility of wool to do some 3D objects.  Anticipating the fun sharing.
 一小撮的馬尾松回家做了植物印染, 可愛羊毛氈做的牛牛.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Fibre arts workshop for NGO 纖維藝術工作坊

Such a funny face! What's it?  I may not know well what the maker expressed at this moment. The maker's world is colorful and pure.
 This is kind of a series of fibre works that the NGO, St. James Settlement wants to introduce to their members in textile arts. I was invited to teach the fibre works from natural prints/dyes to wool felt making for a group of members with mental disability but they have quite well skills and talents of weaving or ceramics in the centre. This is to further develop their abilities in fibre arts with new skills of creation. 
聖雅各福群會, 一個多元非牟利社會服務機構, 其中的藝術發展  ─ 陶藝•紡織工作室為一些智障人士提供技能培訓, 當中有些學員對紡織有特別創意, 中心為進一步啟發他們的纖維藝術潛能, 因些這幾星期我為學員設計一系列纖維藝術工作坊, 從植物印染至羊毛氈工藝. 
這星期的植物印染課堂,  學員從拾葉子至扎作煮熱, 解扎後出現的顏色紋理, 有童真的, 有紋路的鋪排. 在輕輕鬆鬆的唱遊中學習,他們做出多片柔麗絲巾, 有說要送給姐姐,送給媽媽,也說再要玩玩.  正好, 這就帶出他們學習的動機與興趣,他們已很期待來周的羊毛氈工作坊, 那多塑性的羊毛手作定必讓他們雀躍參與!

 April, we're already into early summer. The vivid green of the trees outside the organisation building caught my sight while I was entering into the centre.

In the spacious weaving studio we normally hear the rhythm of weaving the members doing with the looms. These days our workshops are taking place here with the backdrop of colorful threads and yarns.  

The concept of fibre works is quite fresh to the members.  For the first part of natural prints we started by observation of plants by drawing and picking windfalls down in the centre.
Followed by bundling the first piece of printing with assorted leaves and onion skins.

The first bundle of silk chiffon is soft of euc red and onion dyes
They're happy with the first trial
The second day we tried the contact prints with leaves placement on silk
A simple placement of onion skins, rose leaf and the windfalls, a funny face in the make.....
After 1.5 hours boiling,  unwrapping is always exciting.........
Outcome with rich prints of leaves and golden yellow dyed from onion skins.
The double folding and tie marks at the end makes the funny look.
Red and orange shades of euc and onion skins formed the flower
Purple and green from windfalls down in the building
Their imagination is incredible.  Such impressive prints.
The next day, members were encouraged to share and learn from each other with their works displayed.
The whole days learning filled with fun, laughs, group plays, dancing and singing.....
See how they played the "tunnel crossing" with their printed scarfs.
Next to do chiffon dyeing with onion skins. Simple bundling makes the rich overlapped tone.

Shades of yellow from golden yellow to brown of the onion skins are just beautiful 

Members were so excited for their creations. The fourth piece was natural tie dyeing all with onion skins.  Since only with onion skins, an hour boiling it's done.
Shades of onion skins are strong
Light purple from orchid and the tie marks are
Brown to purple......
Yellow shades
Sorts of purple and yellow onion skins formed the daisy patterns
During the first week, they've learned contact prints and natural dyes.
Some members said they're going to give their scarfs to their sisters or mums.  Such thoughtfulness!

 Members made the colorful prints under our guidance are happy with their involvement. Some  even said they wanted to do more.....
Next week will have wool felt making with the same members. The versatility of wool would be more fun for creation.
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