Indigo Waves

indigo waves

It's been up and down with the indigo. One of the three miniature vats was ready at one point and I was able to do a little bit of dyeing.

The peaks:
When it works, dyeing with indigo is all they say about it - magic. The blues are dreamy.

Looking after the vats, keeping them warm, feeding them bran is like having some strange pet. They are alive and have different temperaments.

The troughs:
Maybe it's because of the small size but the vat would only allow one dip a day. Even with due care it's all too easy to throw it out of balance and it takes many hours to recover.

Impatiently dyeing in a vat that is not well reduced can strip the colour of an already dyed fabric. That's partly why I haven't got much to show in this post.

Whenever I deal with indigo, snippets of Jim Liles's book are running through my head (he's my favourite author on indigo vats): "Experience and proper judgement are necessary." That could take years but I'm working on it.


Velma said...

seems like indigo is best in a larger, bucket or stock pot size vats. i was going to do one this winter, but i decided i couldn't afford to heat the 5 gallon bucket all winter long.

Sweetpea said...

Oh my, such a l-o-n-g process. This photo above, so GLORIOUS, no wonder you are smitten. All best wishes for a very successful outcome!

Catherine V. Bainbridge said...

How well this image goes with your blog header! Gorgeous results. The subtleness of these shades suits your work I think. I like the unpredictable nature of this dying business and all that is unique in that. NIce job!

leFiligree said...

its good to know you have his book; keep at it. at least youre getting something blue...

leFiligree said...

i meant to ask: do you test the pH?

Lily said...

Hi Eva!
I just wanted to let you know that I think your work is absolutely amazing. I've done a write up of you on my blog:


Eva said...

Velma - I guess you're right about the size. Shame the warmth is such a problem.

Sweetpea, Catherine - thank you!

leFiligree - yes I test the pH and strangely enough it wants to stay at about 8 or 9. If it's at the recommended 10 - 12 the miniature vat won't ferment.

Lily - hello and thank you for featuring me!

Dee / Cloth Company said...

well, if it's any consolation, the language employed DESCRIBING the process is rather delicious!