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Processing the lavender crop at la Baye des Anges

This year, the crop has been quite late as we where very busy with guests… so by the time we trim the flowers, they are already quite dry and the aromas are quite overpowering!

The field after trimming:

Starting to fill some of the lavender pouches, all hand dyed with natural pigments:

We gently let the lavender dry for months in the shade of the summer house, away from sunlight and in a dry environement…… and we kind of forget about it for weeks… I go back from time to time to shake things up and passing the cut offs from one sheet to another to recover some flowers for my lavender bags as needed.

Needless to say the aromas in the summer house are quite intoxicating, pure Provence, and one of my favourite activities, especially on a mild sunny morning as this 🙂

Lavender processing at la Baye des Anges

Lavender processing at la Baye des Anges

Lavender processing at la Baye des Anges

Lavender processing at la Baye des Anges

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Arimatsu Shibori, from tradition to innovation

Was very lucky to attend a workshop with Kuno Hiroaki organised by Couleur Garance. His enthusiasm about traditional indigo shibori and the way he envisions it’s transposition into a XXIe century sustainable and modern production is very inspiring.

We trained in Te-Kumo shibori, and realised the unbelievable amount of work needed to create the patterns by this tying method onto a large (or long) piece of fabric…

Kuno brought with him some very ancient textiles, some of them created with forgotten shibori techniques that made then real treasures!

Endless inspiration…

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Indigo Shibori

Shibori is a method of negative contrats perfected over the centuries by Japanese tradition. There are many methods to keep particular areas of the fabric away from the dye in order for it to retain it’s original colour (here white).

For Itajime shibori, the fabric is folded between wood blocks that are clamped together, the pressure impedes the fabric’s contact with pigment. After the desired colour is obtained, the fabric is unclamped and the pattern appears like magic!

Itajime shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

Itajime shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

After Paul Jackson class, I was inspired to try some new shiborigami techiques…

Itajime shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

Itajime shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

Itajime shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

Itajime shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

Arashi shibori is another reserve technique in which the lines are creating by only exposing part of the fabric that is tightly wrapped around a pole. Traditionaly in Japan, it was around a beautiful bamboo pole. Nowadays, we have to make do with pvc tubes..

Arashi shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

Arashi shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

Arashi shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

Arashi shibori indigo dye at Mei Line

Both pattern can mix and match quite harmoniously..

 

Back from Japan, indigo has become an obsession. experimenting shibori on different type of fabrics…

Indigo shibori at Mei Line

Indigo shibori at Mei Line

Indigo shibori at Mei Line

Indigo shibori at Mei Line

Indigo shibori at Mei Line

In