I have lots of photos to share and am trying to organize them to provide as much information for you as possible.
First let me mention.......we understood we needed to mordant our fabric. Both alum and unsweetened soy milk seemed to be recommended. So our fabric was soaked in one or the other. We saw no difference in the results. Another recommendation was to keep the bundles rolled tightly. Check...we did this. We also read that it was helpful to spray the foliage with vinegar or vinegar/water once it was placed on the fabric. Check.
There was a lot of conflicting information about how long to process the bundles: everything from burying them in dirt for weeks, boiling with other organic materials for days, or placing in a steamer with plain water for as short as 2 hours. We used steamers and a large pot on the stove with water. After that failed, on day 2 we switched to simmering the bundles for about 2 hours in our iron solution on the stove and in an aluminium pan on a hot plate.
Kate removing bundles from the iron solution - wrapped on PVC pipe, wood dowels, folded bundles with rubber bans, and a GREAT idea....sections of flexible tubing that could be bent to fit in the pan!!
It was our intent to keep a written record of every step/material/timing etc. But after opening the first bundles and seeing nothing but blank fabric, we threw caution to the wind and just played. However, we did 'try' to take some notes. I'll admit to giving that up at some point since there really didn't seem to be one constant that we could count on.
So.....let's see how one specific piece was processed.
Regular readers will recognize this fabric....yup...I STILL have some of that peachy colored National Non-wovens woolfelt that I didn't care for.
It had been soaked in alum & line dried. Then sprinkled with ground turmeric and curry powder, covered with fresh pine needles and spritzed lightly with vinegar (mainly to keep the spices in place). With help from one of my pals, it was tightly rolled onto a wooden dowel. Tied and placed in our iron solution (made by steeping rusty iron pieces in 1 part vinegar to 2 parts water for 2 weeks)..
Happy dancing and lots of squealing went on as I unrolled it.
Great, isn't it?
I brought the curled, cooked pine needles home which needed to be washed twice to eliminate the Indian curry smell.
Pretty soon they were calling to me.......so I decorated the top of a felted bowl.....
More to come....thanks for visiting