Sunday, March 11, 2007

Shibori and the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

While I was going thru my mother's things, I found some silk scarves from the late 50s and early 60s. They were very beautiful, but simple, examples of Shibori. As you may know from various articles in IWK, Shibori is the precursor to tye-dyeing. Tiny knots, pebbles, and little beans are used to create resist patterns.

I also found a picture of my nieces in front of the giraffe habitat at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. It dawned on me that I could use Shibori techniques to replicate animal skins. I got out my trusty Bond, and whizzed thru a skein of Paton's Merino. I tied it up. I used wine corks, clear ouchless ponytail holders, a few bottle caps...every plastic gizmo I could muster from the junk drawer.
Then, I mixed about 3/4 cup white vinegar, almost an entire jar of Wilton's food colors and a cup of water. And I threw my meager bundle in. And nuked. And nuked. And nuked. Then I snipped.
The ensuing bag looked something like this...not QUITE Giraffe-like, more Pythony. So I embroidered a few strands nilly-willy and....

I have to felt the bejezus out of it, and put in a drawstring.


jayne said...

That is fun fun fun!

Les said...

Love it Bets! Very clever and brave. You're right it does look like a python!

Suzann said...

That looks great Bets. Some kind of snake skin for sure. I can see no knitted item will be safe from you for awhile :P
Kidding aside I think you have found something new and interesting here.
Ah my girlfriend said to try Legos. You have those bumps on them. On the other hand we have both had more then one glass of wine :-)

junior_goddess said...

I think you could get a very lizardy effect with a bunch of coins and some deoderant caps (the stick stuff-they are squarish ovals.)

benne said...

I love this! And it's so cool that it's a technique from your heritage. I think you've got what it takes for this, bets. Creativity, ingenuity,and color sense. I want to see more!

T said...



Evelyn said...

You just never know what new idea will come out of that pretty little head of yours.
I think your new technique is awsome.