Making: Silk Patterns

miriamdema-patchwork-santa-ana-2014Big thanks to everyone that came out to Patchwork Santa Ana this past Sunday! It was a fun show hanging out with my awesome booth neighbors and meeting new customers. I’m usually pretty busy at these shows to take many photo’s but I did run out from behind my table to get a clear shot of everything all set up including some indigo dyed fabric I snuck into my table. This past week I hand folded and dyed a new tablecloth layer for my set up. I love the chevron zig zag lines and bright blue color beneath my pennants and coasters.

miriamdema-2014-scarves-03I’ve also been hard at work in the studio screen printing scarves out of all of that silk I hand dyed! I’m really, really excited at how they are turning out! I can’t wait to have them up for sale in my shop.  Some of you have following the process along on Instagram and Facebook and you’ve see all the hard work these are. Due to the dye process each scarf is a bit different from the next. They really are unique and one of a kind.  I love a big scarf and this size is directly inspired by some large cashmere scarves I bought a few years ago in Italy. Each scarf is 26 inches wide by 90 inches long!!

It took some time just to figure out how I was going to print something this large and this delicate.  The silk is so floaty and it moves around with the slightest breeze.  I’m sure this isn’t the only way to make something this size and out of this material but this happens to be working for me. No matter which way I conceived of how to print these it’s still a lot of square inches to cover! So far I have a series of white moons and stars on a black and white background. A series of the white moons and stars on completely solid black. A series of black moons and stars on a wavy indigo dyed silk and one more different pattern in the works to print on some more of the indigo dyed silk. Whew, that’s a lot of scarves! I’m also working on hemming the edges and some finishing details.

In addition to the actual printing here are a few added touches that I have been perfecting through this process! The ink on the printed design goes through the fabric and the design can be seen from both sides. Perfect for wrapping up around your neck. The printed design areas are soft and smooth. Not hard and crunchy like a new t-shirt. It was really important to me to have these soft against the skin and completely wearable.  The silk is also fairly sturdy. I’ve been wearing one out and about for a while now. I’ve shoved it into a big satchel, I’ve gotten a bit sweaty, I’ve belted it around my waist and it still looks about the same as when I started with it! I love that while delicate and floaty the silk is durable and strong.

For those of you that have seen me wearing  one of these out and about this little view into the process hopefully explains the amount of time it’s taken me to get this far. I’ve been screen printing for a long time, almost 15 years and it’s been quite an exciting challenge to create these in my home studio. Thanks for following along!

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This entry was posted in Making: From Art to Craft....