Kim Eichler-Messmer

Green Shibori scarves

Dip dyeing, where you dip a piece of fabric into a dye vat is one of the easiest ways to dye fabric. Although it is uncomplicated, this technique provides endless variety of design fun.

Dip dyed scarf
Dip dyed scarf

I first saw this technique in Kim Eichler-Messmer’s book: Modern Color: an illustrated guide for modern quilts. In it she wrote about dip dyeing placemats and they were simply beautiful.

Dip dyed scarf
Dip dyed scarf

I’ve been experimenting with this technique and have two scarves to show you. The green scarf above was loosely folded, rolled and placed into a container of green dye. I left it until all the dye had been absorbed. This creates a striped effect with the fabric at the bottom of the container absorbing the most dye and is therefore the darkest.

Plaid dip  dyed scarf
Plaid dip dyed scarf

In the plaid scarf, I first folded, rolled, and dipped the piece in a yellow dye bath. I dried the scarf.

Plaid dip  dyed scarf
Plaid dip dyed scarf

The second step was to refold in the opposite direction, re-roll and re-dip in the second colour. This time I placed the scarf in a turquoise dye bath. I love the colour that is created where the yellow and turquoise intersect. It looks like a much more complicated design. I will be experimenting with dyeing more Shibori scarves in various colour combinations in the future.

Dyeing with Kim Eichler-Messmer at QuiltCon

These are some of the delicious fabrics I brought home from Austin, Texas this February.

Shibori hand dyed fabrics
Shibori hand dyed fabrics

I took two fabric dyeing workshops at QuiltCon with Kim Eichler-Messmer. She is an excellent teacher: knowledgable, approachable and super talented.

Kim Eichler-Messmer teaching workshop at QuiltCon
Kim Eichler-Messmer teaching workshop at QuiltCon

Kim has written a book called Modern Color: An Illustrated Guide to Dyeing Fabric for Modern Quilts. I highly recommend this book for all of you who are interested in dyeing your own cloth. She outlines safety, setting up a dye studio at home, gives comprehensive instructions to create gorgeous fabric from just six basic colours and then shows you how to use the colourful fabric you’ve just created.

Modern Color by Kim Eichler-Messmer book cover
Modern Color: an Illustrated guide to dyeing fabric for modern quilts by Kim Eichler-Messmer

The first day was an introduction to dyeing and it was comprehensive. Below are some of the fabrics the class produced.

Hand dyed fabrics
Hand dyed fabrics drying

The second workshop we learned to create Shibori style hand dyed fabrics. These required folding, clamping between two pieces of plastic and adding the dye in small amounts. The parts of the fabric that were tightly in between the plastic resisted the dye and left the fabric in its original colour. There are an infinite combination of designs that can made with this technique.

Shibori hand dyed fabrics
Shibori hand dyed fabrics drying on fence

Not all of these gorgeous fabrics were mine, although I wish they were!

Shibori hand dyed fabrics
Shibori hand dyed fabrics
Shibori hand dyed fabrics
Shibori hand dyed fabrics
Shibori hand dyed fabrics
Shibori hand dyed fabrics drying on picnic table

I am looking forward to warmer weather here so I can get outside and dye some more fabric.

Kim Eichler-Messmer QuiltCon2
Shibori hand dyed fabric drying on fence

Now I need to actually use up these beautiful fabrics!

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