Lizzie Godden workshop – An Introduction to Natural Dyeing & Eco printing
Having seen Lizzie’s work the day before, I was very exited to be in the workshop with her! The room layout was a little different to our normal workshops and we were told to work in pairs (sorry, Clare!). The centre table was a mass of lots of types of leaves; oak, sumac, blackberry to name a few, all ready for the day.
First Lizzie decanted iron water into washing up bowls and warned us to make sure we wore gloves unless we wanted black fingers for a few weeks! We picked off the leaves we wanted to use and placed them in the iron water as this is what helps the leaves to give a good print. Once covered, the leaves were placed on the strips of silk in a pattern we wanted, rolled around a dowel and boiled in a huge pan.
Whilst that was cooking, we printed leaves on watercolour and khadi paper using the same principle. Pressure is important to get a good print, so the layers of leaves and paper were pressed together between tiles and again boiled. This is a much quicker process, and we were able to see our results relatively quickly which just made us more curious about the bundles that were still boiling away!
Lunch in the sunshine was a lovely treat! After lunch Lizzie gave us all a piece of buddleia dyed fabric which surprisingly was a beautiful soft butter yellow. After seeing some of Lizzie’s samples, we had a go at shibori, the art of stitching and pulling fabric tight to create a resist before dyeing fabric in another dye bath. Lizzie used onion skins to overdye the stitched pieces, resulting in a rich amber colour.
We were handed our dowels but told not to open them for 24 hours! Torture! (I didn’t manage 24 hours; I think I got to 20…just 😊) And I think we all abided by the gloves rule; not a black finger in sight!
Report thanks to Tase
Photos thanks to Judy J
Lizzie’s website: https://www.lizziegoddentextiles.co.uk/