Buckeye and Hickory

25 Apr

It’s cold here.  Cold.  Gray.  Rainy.  But suddenly—turning GREEN.  Not the dark homogenous green of summer.  Spring green.  Hundreds of shades of green.  I remember reading that Eskimos have over a hundred words for different types of snow.  The greens of spring could do with more descriptors.

Peony is ready for printing as are Bradford Pear and a few others…but I’m cleaning house and trying to use the last of my foraged and dried leaves gathered over the last two years.

These hickory leaves were huge.  Over 12”.  And papery thin.  I doubted they had much tannin but they did…at least enough to leave a light ephemeral image.

The dried buckeye—sometimes called “horse chestnut”—after rehydrated, had so much tannin the intense color exploded onto the silk.


4 Responses to “Buckeye and Hickory”

  1. ravenandsparrow April 25, 2018 at 8:46 pm #

    You get such amazing results with your leaf printing. Do you use a mordant?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Patricia April 25, 2018 at 9:12 pm #

      Hey there. Yes I do use mordants. Generally I mordant with alum but have been experimenting ting recently with titanium mordant. Titanium is a very stable natural element and oxalate are found in rhubarb, etc.


  2. Liz A April 26, 2018 at 6:53 am #

    I’m definitely intrigued … does the rehydrating occur as a result of the eco-dyeing process or is it a separate, preparatory step?


    • Patricia April 26, 2018 at 7:27 am #

      Once in a while I place dry leaves on the fabric if I know they’ll print. Usually though I soak the leaves in hot water for a period of time—an hour to 3-4 days. Depends on what I’m involved with, whether I get distracted, or simply am experimenting!


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