I’ve been doing some more experiments with shibori paper. This time I used a much heavier paper. I’m not exactly sure what weight it is, but it’s thick enough not to buckle when it gets wet.
First I tried wrapping pleated fabric on top. The example below was cotton poplin. It wasn’t very successful, partly because the length of the fabric meant I had to make the pleats quite large to fit it on the pole. (You can see that it worked better on the left-hand side, where the pleats were narrower with more space between them.) I also thought that the weave might have been too close to allow much indigo to reach the paper beneath.
So next I tried a finer cotton muslin, with narrower pleats. This was more successful
Then I wondered whether I needed to use fabric at all – whether I could dip the paper directly into the indigo vat. So I went back to binding, dipping and rebinding with paper only.
I found that even with quite a concentrated vat, the first couple of layers are very pale, and it’s difficult to brush of the foam (hana) without rubbing off the indigo. But with repeated dipping, I achieved quite satisfactory results.
Finally, here’s a tiny stitched sample (on fabric) that was inspired by the markings on a whale shark. Could be the start of a (much) bigger project!