Saturday, September 19, 2009

Working on...

Last blog I showed you my screen with dye poured on to it, resting over the bath. Here it is screened on to the white silk, although I selected only a portion to work with. When I do something like this I put the soda ash into my dye solution, and not pre-soak the fabric in a soda ash solution. The reason for this is so that when I wash off the excess dye residue after cold batching, it does not get grabbed, and stained, by the soda ash in the fabric. This is a huge advantage if I want any of the fabric to remain pristine white.

The next stage underway, defining some of the spaces.

I hope you like this spectacular photo that Clare Plug sent me. It is of the public gardens in her home town of Napier, NZ. I recall my mother planting livingston daises, and marigolds, in her summer flower beds; in those days these were probably all that was on offer, not like today where we have such a variety of annuals from which to make our choice.

Oh yes, only 35 days to my exhibition.


  1. Diana, this silk will be gorgeous! Have you done this process before with the unthickened dye on the screen?
    very cool!

  2. Hi Rayna, I haven't done this before but felt it should work, which it did. Whether it is an entirely new idea I don't know. The piece is progressing well and I will blog again with more images.

  3. Diana, I am fascinated by this technique. What did you use to transfer the dried blue dye, which has the soda ash in the mixture, from the screen onto the silk? My efforts with screen printing and breakdown have all been with thickened paste - either clear or with dye added. I am particularly impressed that the blue dye left your white silk pristine - even with squeegeeing across it. It is such a stunning piece and has a uniquely Australian feel with those dots and colours. Thank you for sharing the progress.