Immersed in blue

Indigo Vat

The word “indigo” brings a healthy plethora of images to one’s mind. Probably most likely the first thing to come to mind is jeans and the lovely fabric loved the-world-round, denim. Indigo especially hand-steeped, in a vat, kept healthy year round by trial and error gives the whole idea of the hue a more profound even romantic meaning. Regardless of all the filagre associated with indigo dyeing, it is a very simple, natural process. This experience in Fujino was not my first nor my last dip into the indigo dye vat, but I felt exhuberant to dye in the open air, laying the fabric on natures hangers. It also hit a note that reminded me of why my interests are dedicated to textiles; the intimate feeling of using your hands with your creativity to make something slowly and carefully.

3 thoughts on “Immersed in blue

  1. Very nice. Did you throw each of those big swatches in the vat at once? I’ve found that when I attempt to dye a large piece of cloth at once, it always comes out marbled because of the fabric being folded. Do you have any tips?

    1. My friend had me carefully pull each piece separately through my two hands. But before submerging each one into the vat I soaked them in cold water before hand. The trick is in how you move them in your hands in the dye. You have to slightly stretch the fabric and let the dye completely penetrate the fabric. The first dip is always marbled but you have to do four or five dips.

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