|Batik "cap" carved wooden block|
This weekend I have been experimenting with some batik techniques. I used to love dying fabric but haven't done any for years. My husband bought me some beeswax and a cap (carved wooden block used for printing the wax onto fabric) for christmas. I tried using the block, however the cold british climate has meant the even inside the wax was cooling too quickly to apply evenly to the fabric. I might give it a go later in the year when its a bit warmer.
|Experiments using a Tjanting|
I still wanted to experiment and decided to use the Tjantings I had already to apply the wax. This works very well on a small scale and can easily be controlled, but I wanted to dye a large 3m piece of fabric.
|Dye bath and wax pot with Tjanting|
I decided to use an old paintbrush to apply the wax in a random swirl pattern, drawn freehand.
I had experimented with the dye and used Dylon Bahama Blue.
|Design applied with paintbrush|
On my samples it worked very well. I'm not sure it's working quite so well on my large piece. I did double up the amount of dye used, but I suspect that the fabric is not 100% cotton and has some polyester in it - despite checking at the shop when I bought it.
|First sample - pre painted fabric, you can see the uneven stamping, then dyed blue|
The fabric is currently steeping in the bath while I type, but will have to come out soon as the kids need their baths! I will be applying some more wax and over dyeing with purple dye. I'll see what that turns out like and may add a third layer of dye.
|Fabric in dye bath|
I need to invest in some Procion dyes. I used to use the a lot when I was a student, but haven't kept any for a few years. They are incredibly versatile and provide vibrant and strong colours.
Maybe a spot of tritik or shibori next.