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Mar 31, 2011

Ann-Marie back to printing

I went to West Dean College - and wow - it became a fantastic journey. Being a teenager I did print my festive outfits, several dresses I remember and particularly my ball gown for the final ball held when we finished school, and passed "Studentexamen" a big event in Sweden, sijmilar to the International Bac.
Anyway - I immediately put my name down when I saw that Carole Waller was to hold this course and I did not become disappointed. We were ten pupils, all of them with some diploma or degree - or on their way to some degree. I do think I was the least "qualified" but interestingly enough the only that had some focus on textiles for clothes. Everybody introduced themselves and Carole paled a bit when I declared that I wanted to go home with a printed silk chiffon for a tunic. It was a four day-course - in practice three and a half and we worked late hours and I loved it. I was particularly interested as we were to use "translucent colours", something I was not aquainted with before. I had only done lino printing on cloth  before (45 years ago)- but silk screen printing in my job, when I invented to print chemicals onto paper in a controlled way in iorder to produce complicated disgnostic"test strips" for veterinary medical use something which rendered me a world patent - also some 35 years ago. The funny thing was that the first examples of those prints were done at our kitchen table with my "hobby" sild screen frame that I had wished and got for Christmas!

Very well - I learnt on this course many more ways of producing prints using the frame and I was the only of the students who did not produce a photostencil at site. i reasoned with rationing time- as I will never be able to produce a photo stencil at home - I will anyway be depending on having sombody else to make it - so - I continued to make my paper stencils for printing my chiffon tunic. Having printed a rather bold, "Marimekko"-style pattern in turqoise and yellow, I wanted to soften it up with some grey. Being a bit uncertain of what kind od form to use, Carole suggested bold, wide, daring pbrish strokes all over..... And so I did - large arm movements and it turned out beautiful! I was so happy! I will make a posting when the tunic is made.

Silk chiffon tunic - still on printing table
This first image shows fabric on printing table - and the colours seem quite bold - however after steaming to fix the dye as well as subsequent washiing out of the thickening agent in the dye, the colours become much less sharp and quite translucent.
Chiffon steamed 
The second image shows the fabric hanging, it has been steamed but still not washed and it is first after the washing that one can really see what the colours became like.

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