Friday, May 25, 2007

Mud Cloth and Tying Up Loose Ends

Here is the picture of my "mud cloth" sample. I had started to fill in the background so I would have a negative space design but ran out of time. That's OK, I got a feel for it. As we were driving home, Vivian was wondering what to do with our little mud cloth patch. Mine is about 5" x 5". I decided that I would let the mud cure, overdye the fabric with Madder and sew it to a handwoven tote bag. Michele had some mud cloth fabric that they had made that had been overdyed with Madder and I really liked the looks of it.
I checked the Earthues website last night and didn't see any reference to the mud cloth but I also Googled for Mali mud cloth. In fact, Google very helpfully inserted the keywords into the search box even though I know I have never done a search on it before. I put a link to the Smithsonian exhibit on my Fiber Links list. If you decide to purchase Mali mud cloth for yourself I have the following pleas; Please make sure, as much as you are able to, that the makers receive a fair wage. If you possibly can, please support a female artist. The men are worthy too but the women have a more difficult time getting paid as well for the same level of skill and time.
A few posts back, Dana had asked me how many pots I had to dye with and I haven't responded to that so I will do this now while the Cutch dyed yarns are being dyed. I have three stainless steel stockpots. One is smaller than the others and is perfect for dyeing the 5 skeins at a time I have been dyeing recently. As I mentioned before I use an old enamel canning pot to put the iron modifier bath in. I have one large propane burner and two tanks so I can keep going when one tank runs out of fuel. I would like to get another burner so that I can have two dyepots going at once. I may even consider a double burner so that I can have all three. Three pots are just as easy to watch as one. I have many 5 gallon plastic pails that come in handy for staging the yarns, either before or after dyeing. I also have assorted stainless steel, wood, and plastic stirrers, whisks, and sticks. I have a scale which is essential, mine is digital. I also have a set of scientific graduated measuring beakers in plastic. When the cutch dyeing is finished I will take a picture of the skeins hanging on the set-up I use to dry them.
Well, off to get the next batch of Cutch going and spin and weave!
A note to those readers who may not be familiar with some of the terms I use. I have put a glossary in one of the sidebars and will be adding to it from time to time.
Stay tuned for the Cutch results!
My question for today: Do you have a cause that you support? I have three that are dear to my heart. One is the promotion of peace, safety, and economic security for women and girls, the other is to stop cruelty toward animals, and the final is to promote and protect the well being of our planet. It is all connected you know!
-Renee

1 comment:

dana said...

I wonder if tannin makes madder red because those mud cloths have lots of tannin in them and when Kathy over-dyed one in madder it was true red without additional calcium. I've meant to try it on another type of cloth, but so far I haven't gotten to it. Sounds like a good time at the guild meeting.