If you have followed my blog, you will remember that the last couple of summers I have felt compelled to experiment with folding fabrics, applying ice and then dyes trying to see how many layers the color will go through to get a repeating pattern. Inspired by fellow dyer Kay Koeper Sorensen, I decided to try to do mandalas this summer. These were my first attempts and this was my favorite of the three I did. My process for this one was (1) to cut a piece of fabric 45 inches long by 45 inches wide. ( 2) I then ironed it well and started folding, first in half, then quarters, then eighths and then sixteenths, ironing in the folds. (3) I then refolded as much as I could so that I was getting more of a fan fold rather than just one thick side. (4) I then soaked it in a soda ash solution making sure that the piece was saturated and making sure the folds stayed in place. (5) Then I placed it on a rack and smushed it up some as I was running out of room because I had laid out another piece flat. The folds in this piece were not as precise as the other two I did at the same time. This was my favorite. (6) I used grape, blue violet, dark green and basic blue dyes pretty thickly applied over the ice with which I had covered the pieces.
This is the other piece that shared the rack with the above piece. Instead of scrunching this piece, I aid it flat on the rack. If you look closely you can see that on top of the piece, you can clearly see the rack markings! The third piece I did had this even more evident. My conclusion was that I liked the effect of the crinkled up fabric much better. With the scrunching, you get hills and valleys so that the dyes actually run down the fabric and give a much more organic feel to it. So onward with more experimenting using different colors, concentrations and using a hexagon fold the next time so that I will have a six-repeat pattern instead of an 8. I love kalaidoscopic images and of course have carried on a love affair with hexagonal repeats for a number of years now doing far far too many stack and whack, one block wonder and serendipity quilts!!
This is far too much fun!!
Prothonotary Warbler Golden Beauty!
1 day ago
I've been looking around your blog to understand how you fold your pieces of fabric to make a mandala, can you let me know how you do this? And how many colors you use for one piece, how you arrange them?
Have a nice day,
Will try to get a blog up about the various folds I used soon. Have had terrible cold and move to my summer home so might be awhile. They are pretty simple though with a couple of hints. My color selections are pretty random although I should note that with a few exceptions, I use only "pure" colors (ones that are not mixes). My exceptions are some greens, brown and black. I try to make sure that I have a variation in value, ie if I am using a lot of dark colors, I make sure there are some white areas or lighter colors like yellow or orange. Same with the opposite, if using a lot of light colors, I make sure there are some very darks included. I tend to use the browns with red, orange and yellow and black when mixing with green, blue and purple.
Very informative and interesting post. It is really a big help. Thank you so much for sharing it with us.. Mandala Duvet Cover
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