Shaking things up a bit…. for me anyway.

I always seem to do my eco prints with the same process these days…

1. soak fabric in sea salt water

2. dip the leaves in rusty egg vinegar rain water and place on fabric

3. roll around a copper (or sometimes iron) pipe

4. heat in water, either a large pot or a pressure cooker

Why am I always doing this way? Because I’ve had nice results I suppose.

Today… while I’m supposedly cleaning house for company tomorrow, I decided to do one of the tee-shirts that I’d soaked in soy milk. Just as is (I normally would have also soaked it in washing soda, and then soaked it in sea salt water).

I asked myself….. what if you don’t do that? So I didn’t!

I took the shirt and dampened it in rain water….. threw some eucalyptus leaves on it and rolled it up, without a pipe or stick, and tossed it into the pressure cooker along with a little madder dye. Then I went back to doing housework while it ‘cooked’.

And the results are not that bad!

IMG_3395_1 IMG_3392_1 IMG_3390 IMG_3391_1What mainly prompted this ‘experiment’ was the question in my mind of whether  I ‘had’ to soak the shirt in washing soda. And I guess I don’t.

I have a couple of other soy soaked shirts that I will take on a road trip in a couple of weeks….. I’m helping my daughter Lilly move to Portland (sigh, now ALL of my children will be far away). On this road trip we will be passing through northern California and I am going to gather eucalyptus along the way and bundle the shirts with what I find. They will become a memento of my road trip.


Birthday Present For Jeph

What do you give somebody for their birthday, when they say they want nothing?!

Jeph, my partner, is a musician…… he makes music out of field recordings and natural objects.

IMG_3350_1I decided to make him CD covers!

Some of them turned out…. others didn’t. I read that you should soak paper for 1/2 an hour in vinegar before placing your leaves on them.  But the first two batches seemed blurry…. like the extra moisture in the paper sucked the pigments into the surrounding area. So I soaked the last batch for less time. Some of the leaves made good prints, some I ‘played’ with a bit too much, and the first batch (which I didn’t photograph) were just plain boring. Oh…. tried making another batch of 12 today…. and the leaves left no prints at all 😦

IMG_3389 IMG_3385 IMG_3387The nice thing is…. no matter how much I like, or dislike them, he will tell me that they are beautiful!