Shibori is a term for shaped-resist dyeing, a process by which a flat piece of cloth is shaped by folding, stitching, tying, or wrapping, and then secured before dyeing. Woven shibori is a process of weaving and resist developed by shibori artist, Catharine Ellis, and taught in her book, Woven Shibori (Interweave, 2005). Using this blank, designed by Ellis and woven at The Oriole Mill in North Carolina, you don’t even have to weave to try this technique.
All the fabric is made of high-quality mercerized pima cotton, which dyes beautifully. The pattern/gathering threads are supplemental to the ground cloth and are used to gather the fabric and make a resist for the dye. Ultimately, the pattern threads will be removed from the cloth, leaving only their memory in the dyed pattern. This blank, in a small stripe pattern, is the perfect medium to explore natural dyes, resists, and layering of colors. (Fabric on the left is a sample of the blank dyed with a natural dye.)