02 February 2013

pondering the evolution

I love hand dyed fabric. I really do. But I rarely dye anymore for a variety of reasons. It leaves me with kind of a gap because there is nothing more soulful then that kind of coloring on fabric. It sounds a little bit odd but I often feel like it has a memory and that the hand of the dyer remains present.

Since my own hand dyes are few and far between now, I'm constantly on the look out for interesting pieces. Recently Susan Atwell of Fat Quarter Quilt Farm did some snow dyeing and I fell in love with one of her larger pieces (nearly three yards).

(photo by Susan Atwell)

The patterning really struck me and the tone of it is perfect. Not shockingly bright but colorful. It's in that sweet spot of saturation, just the right amount of moody. I immediately began covering it with printing and paint in my mind so I knew it needed to come to live with me.

And now it has:

It's sitting on the sofa next to me. I keep nudging it around, watching as the different colors shift as I move the fabric.

No doubt I'll sit with it for a while before working on it. Partly because I have deadlines that need to be met but also because I normally do that with fabric I haven't dyed myself.

I find that I step around it, studying it and trying to find my place with it. I want to respect the work that came before me but at the same time, I want to really dig into it and well, do what I do.

Think of everything that needed to happen for this fabric to come to where it is now with me. Fabric was made. Dye was made. Items were shipped to vendor. Susan bought them. The weather was just right so she had snow. She had time in her schedule to dye them. I happened upon it on her Facebook page. I bought it. And now it moves on to it's next stage.

So many steps. So many things that this fabric will go through before it finally settles into it's final state. Such an evolution, so much energy going into it.

Wonderful, isn't it? :)


mary said...

very pretty and pet-able!

Jeannie said...

When I saw the photo on Facebook, I saw a cutting garden, like my Gram used to grow. I am with you on hand dyed fabric. It is as though it can speak about its creation. Have fun!

Susan said...

I LOVE that you two are getting to know each other all cozy on your sofa! I KNOW it now has a great home and I am SURE you will take it to its intended destiny of greatness!! I can't wait to see the outcome!

Regina Dunn said...

Did you know that there are different types of snow? Living in Michigan, I'm sure you have experienced many of them. To add to your thoughts on all the things involved with your piece of fabric...if the weather had been a little more violent with stronger updrafts the day it snowed, or if the temperature difference between the ground and the clouds had been a little less different and shorter clouds had formed that day, the texture of the snow would have been different and that would have caused the patterns and colors to be different in the fabric. Ah, the wonders and possibilities of our planet.

Suzie Bright said...

It looks a lot like a Monet painting of hie water lilies ponds.

HollyM said...

I love Regina's comments about how the different weather conditions might have affected your piece. I once compared to dyed fabric to a sky with clouds and how we used to lay and look for patterns and shapes.

Robbie said...

It's almost like an artist "pay it forward" with a pieve if fabric!

KAM said...

What a totally gorgeous piece of fabric...what great potential and possibilities as you embrace the cloth in all its beauty.

Carol said...

You're offering a lovely home to this fabric! May all fabrics be so loved!