18. Oct, 2020

Back to Preparing For Spring Eco Dying

Because I work p[rimarily in cellulose fibres I have to go through quite an extensive preparation project before I can eco print. I am wanting to continue my month by month journal on changes in leaf printing ability so I was busy mordanting fabric this week. After scouring the first process is the tannin bath. 10% of tannin product to weight of fabric simmered for an hour. Overseas the most popular tannin source is oak gall because it does not discolour the fabric. This gall is made by a wasp inserting its eggs into the bark of the oak tree. We do not have this wasp in NZ so we do not readily get oak gall. The powder is quite espensive and often difficult to source especially with Covid and reduced product coming into the country. I had heard ground sumac was good so I decided to try it. The two pieces above are tanni dipped fabric using myobalan at the top and sumac at the bottom. I did a smal ferrous iron test on the sumac to see if the tannin was present because it was so white. ferrous sulphate in the presence of tannin gives the purplish gry outlines we are so familiar with. I got a good result so now I am printing some of the early leaves on the deciduous trees. The results are interesting