The last year has been a revelation in discovering a seasonality behind textiles. I love the shifting English seasons and the constant change in the natural environment around us. I experience it first hand in my gardening and as I’m mooching round the woods with the dogs.
But starting to rely on natural ingredients for my colour has revealed a new aspect to this.
I have ordered some seeds to grow some plants for dyeing – a long term project!
Meanwhile, I’ve been scouting the garden and lanes for possible materials. The lovely grass verge of the lane by the church was deep in new wild flowers and dock – until some neat-freak strimmed it to within an inch of the ground yesterday. (Why??) I know it will grow back but is there a sadder sight in spring??
However, plenty of dandelions in my garden for the moment so Daughter and I made a potion of dandelion flowers, aconites and a few hyacinth flowers for good measure. A few steps later and – lovely colours emerged, the first time I’ve created a real yellow (a bit bleached out on this pic).
As spring unfolds, I’ve also realized there is a seasonal pattern to my own textiles practice – I’m sure this is typical of lots of people – opening out in Spring, a burst of energy and new ideas; inspiration all around; art in the garden and fresh air where it’s easier to make a mess and get things to dry. Then in Autumn and Winter focusing in and consolidating; out come the yarns, comfort textiles and slow processes.
Cabbage is good at any time of the year, though. At last my dyed yarns have dried: