Saturday, April 5, 2014

Off to Lopez for the weekend, among the many hikes, we ate, drank and painted. As we exited the ferry, our route took us directly to Sweetwater Shellfish farms, open 24/7 and always stocked with stellar, fresh and in season fruits of the sea. Our choice for today; Manila clams. Our next stop was to check out the always stellar seasonal produce available at Horsedrawn farms.  Our heavenly meal consisted of chorizo and clams, a side of baby swiss chard, which we braised with lots of garlic, evoo and chili flakes, shallots and paprika and crusty bread to soak up every last bit of that incredible clam nectar jus.  A stop at Vito's for his excellant wine selections and stellar recommendations.  The perfect pairing for a delicious meal. 

first application of color

I have had this project on the back burner for several years, hand painting Habutai silk ties for gifts, an opportunity to create something special.   Before leaving for Lopez, the girls were to select an image, photo or render a design for their tie. We transfered the design with carbon paper to our blank ties.
Next, we outlined over the carbon lines with the gutta liquid.  The continuous gutta lines, kept the colors separated, with no bleeding of dye color.  The ties were set aside to dry for approx 30 minutes, a good time to relax, converse, eat, and drink, agreed to reconvene the next morning after our beach walk.


We began painting our ties with a colorful selection of Jacquard silk dyes.  After a few more sessions of painting, our ties would then sit and dry for 24 hours or more. More, being the optimum decision, for maximum color penetration. 

Each tie was immersed in a bath of Jacquard dye-set, vigorously agitating for 5 minutes.  Surprisingly, the dye strength remained without bleeding. The ties were dunked in a rinse of hot, soapy bath with Synthrapol to wash out any remaining dye set solution.  Lastly, a final rinsing to remove any remaining soap and the ties were set aside to dry completely. 

The final process was to outline and touch up details with black textile pens.   

We agonized over the process, but our initial craft project resulted in four amazingly beautiful ties.