October 31, 2013

Bits and Pieces

Sometimes I have too many things and photos to share with you. I could split them into 2 posts, but I know I won't feel as excited telling you next week as I am telling you now. I will keep the writing to a minimum and let you see the photos and captions. 

Just want to update you on the exhibition "Connecting with Nature" preparation. I used last weekend to organize all my exhibits and lay them out as I envisaged them in my mind. I'm happy with how it looks and I am now madly typing out the descriptions for each display. Then I took a quick trip to Ziguzagu to get more silk for dyeing. When I got to the shop they told me that there is a 50% sale on at the warehouse so I went there as well.  Enjoy the following photos and a bit more dyeing process...

Rolls of silk Obis going cheap. Some of them are woven silk made specially for Obis. There are yards of fabric in each Obi. Delicious!

Rolls and rolls of vintage silk for dyeing. I have never seen pink, yellow and orange other than white and cream. I got enough to last me awhile.


So many men's Kimonos are on sale too. I didn't get any this time. I already have a few to deconstruct for fabric. Most of these Kimonos are wool and in excellent condition. 

Japanese pottery was on sale too. This one caught my eye. Simple leaf design on earthy glaze. It was quite expensive, but I got it at a sale price. It will be lovely for a Christmas present. 

Small tea cups going cheap. I got some of them to go in Christmas parcels. These cups are specially made for green tea. I was told that they were quite old because ZZ had them in the warehouse for years. 

I found these gorgeous vases too. They were over my budget so I didn't get them. Seeing them again here I wished I did. 

A large bin of mixed fabric pieces. I dug deep, but didn't get much from it. They will still be there next time. 

What I got below is worth talking about. A child's Kasuri (Ikat) jacket. Old, boro indigo dyed Kasuri jacket in almost perfect condition and the indigo colour is still lovely and blue.  

If you love indigo, you've got to love vintage/old indigo fabric. The fabric for this jacket was indigo dyed yarns and woven in Kasuri style. The fabric is categorised as collectible and expensive in Japan. 

I got it to deconstruct for fabric. I can hear you say NO! My thought exactly! But there were 2 of them and I got them both. One to deconstruct and the other to keep and put boro patches on it. 

I got one sleeve off already. There are some torn areas under the arm. Even though it was hand stitched, the threads were old and strong. They were tough to remove each and every stitch. I really enjoy Kimono deconstruction. I take my time and think of the previous wearers of the garments. 

There were some holes on the back part of the jacket. Perfect for me to boro patch over them. I noticed where the holes were on the jacket. All holes happened on the un-dyed area of the fabric. It means that indigo is not only for colour, but also acts as preserve to the fabric.

Before leaving for work yesterday I opened one of my dyed bundles. I did it and ran out of the door. Doing it this way I didn't have a chance to open any more. Self discipline is needed and I don't have it when it comes to opening dye bundles! 

This is what I got in the bundle. It was still wet when I took the photo, but it didn't lose much colour after it dried.

I opened another bundle when I got home and this is it. I think this one had oak leaves from last winter. What an amazing print I got from it. I'm happy with that. 

I didn't stop there! I opened a few more after that. If you are a dyers you would know the feeling. Once you open one, you can't stop until they are all done.

I love the result of what I got in this dye batch. I used rusty prongs in the bundles. The rust creates those black lines on the cloth. Very dramatic.

These are mulberries and mulberry leaves. I don't have the tree myself, but there was one in the neighbourhood and I dyed and blogged about it here. To my disappointment the tree is no longer there! 

I discovered another tree on a nearby street and that is where the leaves came from. Nan, my work colleague kindly gave me the berries. She has a tree in her backyard and didn't know what it was until I told her. 

I got a really lovely pink from mulberry berries when I used them previously. I hope I get it again. Nan said she will get me more, to dye threads with. 

Well that was a lot of bits and pieces in one post. 

Do you know that it will be 5 years in December since I started blogging? A life-long journey that I have enjoyed tremendously. Blogging is my journal; my life activities and where I keep all my creativity in one place. I can't imagine making something and not blogging about it. Not doing it for profit means that there is also less pressure on me to update it regularly. I know blogging is like having a second job, but I'm loving it. I love meeting bloggers, friends and my readers out there. I do treasure each and every comment you leave me. Thank you. 

Until next time


Bev C said...

Hello Nat,

Best wishes on your exhibition. The recent purchases are so lovely, love those little tea cups. The dyeing is all so different, the oak leaf is so realistic. Love the result you got from the mulberries too.

Happy days.

deanna7trees said...

so many treasures and beautiful dyed cloth. i have some pink and yellow silk pieces for dyeing that i found on ebay. i'm anxious to see how they dye. it's a good thing i don't live near ZZ. hard to resist all the beautiful things they have.

Terry said...

You always find such great and interesting buys.
Dyes are lovelyand the indigo jackets are intriging.
Why 2 the same ? Were they a uniform or for brothers? Enjoy the weekend.

Ginny Huber said...

Such wonderful photos and post, Nat...I enjoy your enjoyment and love the results-of the finds and of the dyeing. No, for me, it is not possible to open just one..or even wait!

Queen Of The Armchair aka Dzintra Stitcheries said...

Wow Nat so much here...the berry one is very pretty! Yes I remember you started blogging not long after. E...what a journey hey! Happy Weekend to you xo

Dale said...

Hi Nat, Great bargain you got from Ziguzagu! Beautiful stuff that I would love to get my hands on, and I didn't know it is that close to my sister's place in Prahran. Got to visit the place next time I go to her area.
I cannot wait to see the works you have prepared for your exhibition. I love the patterns you have created, always so beautiful!
See you next Saturday. :)

Carole~Wheels on the Warrandyte Bus said...

How lucky for you to stumble upon the Zigazagu sale! Love the the effect you got with the mulberry leaves and berries. Your posts are always interesting to read.

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