Raw wool is just an amazing material . It arrives claggy with mud, straw and grass, a couple of rinses in warm water and here you are
Like a physical cloud of white, ready to be hung out to dry or to be mordanted using an alum mordantthen ready for dyeing, this time I’m trying brown onion skins. To my delight, I had last year’s onions in a basket and over time they had disintegrated into their dry shells, perfect for going into the dye pot…
As you can see not many onion skins are needed to make an impressively strong dye
I’m adding water to dilute the dye so that all the wool is covered
This is now standing overnight to see what happens…
Working with these colours #today #RomneyMarsh #wool
Here we are enjoying learning how to make a boat bowl with @christianegunz
we started practising bending the willow rods by making fish and then moved on to stars….quickly followed by boat bowls
Well done Princess!
Thank you to Mary for the lovely photos of our first willow workshop making small plant supports. We plan to make more willow structures on 25th Oct. at Lydd allotment.
the final basket! ready for foraging
demonstration of tying in the slath
wool dyeing and felting
besom brooms for cobweb sweeping
we have been successful in bringing community groups together in a shared interest in local traditional skills using easily sourced materials such as hazel, willow and wool
We have also been able to work with schools to provide free skills workshops to groups of children and groups of parents & carers. We enjoyed the inter-generational activities which enabled children to work alongside their family members.
some are very individual a Romney marsh sheep made from pure local wool , a bangle that uses the spectrum of natural dyes that we’ve been making, a jug that celebrates the colour yellow, golden rod dye
We continue to meet weekly at All Saint’s church #Lydd (the photo in the middle image is of the church tower which is the tallest on the marsh), we noticed the considerable temperature drop though and I now have to look into other local venues…maybe the Library or Museum….
We are coming up with designs and ideas for the #Delights exhibition @RyeCreativeCtr in #November
other current inspiration is
lots of autumnal yellow/gold……fruit is abundant at the moment and we are rushing to crop any dye plants and berries….
all quite random visual references but sent our way ….gourds and squashes…lovely shape colour and textures…….closely followed by objet d’art …exhibitions that are all currently FREE @Fstonetriennial and @CoastalCurrents this is a photo of the sculpture Exbury Egg that is sited outside @Jerwoodgallery #Hastings…..
and then references to the sea…sea anemones and shells…
Finding out what willow leaves ( yellow) bring to romney marsh wool……I’ve been adding salt to the wool dye mix to see if this helps the colour fixing
Meanwhile the hens are struggling to share the dust bath….
lovely lovely plant golden rod………where are you? I went to my favourite spot overlooking the wildfowl lakes on Romney Marsh, between the MoD firing range and the wind farm. We really squeeze wildlife into very restricted spaces …..thankfully wildlife still continues to rise to the challenge
However the patch I’ve been eyeing for months has now……gone over ah! I had my secateurs at the ready and everything…no go, I only need a few flower heads so..
Back to Hastings where
Fortunately, we are a little later and cooler so phew experimenting with golden rod has taken place today
Into the pot for some boiling
Onto the mordanted wool, which clearly created a chemical reaction as you can see….bubbling soapy foam, I’ve left this to soak overnight but already you can see the amazing colour evolving…
yesterday was very wet weather so I took the opportunity to mordant some romney marsh wool and collect some black berries and then boil up some avocado skins
Excited by the results … Aiming for blue from the black berries
Sadly the avocado was less successful …clearly need LOADS of the stuff
Bringing the shape of a round courgette and dyed wool together to make
A beautiful and robust vessel……this was finished by some hard hitting against our brick wall, I wrapped the vessel in muslin and then repeatedly swiped the object against the wall to get a more solid structure from the sheep’s wool ….really pleased with the finish which resembles sea anemone, shape and colour…..