The Secret of Stitched Shibori Skills

I am going to show you some of the shibori skills involved and what wonderful designs can be produced in stitched shibori.

Let Me Tell You All About Stitched Shibori

Since I first became a shibori artist, 15 years ago, the word shibori is now more familiar but still needs explaining.

Shibori is a Japanese word which means to ring or to squeeze or press. I often describe it as sophisticated tie dye as it gives an immediate idea of how the patterns are made.

Many other cultures India, China, Africa and Indonesia use forms of tie dye to create pattern on cloth. The Japanese raised it to an art form, developing many complex shibori skills. It reached its peak in the 19th century when there with many ingenious and intricate methods of manipulating the cloth. The Japanese mainly dyed with indigo, madder root and rice grass. Now we have many choices of dyestuff including fibre reactive dyes to give very bright modern colours. I use both traditional and modern dyestuffs.

Additionally, here is my Youtube Channel which has videos showing in close up how to create with shibori skills. Take a look!

Examples of Patterns Created with Shibori Skills

Let me show you some of the wonderful patterns that can be created with stitched shibori skills. Indeed my particular passion is creating stitched shibori patterns inspired by the natural world.

It involves shaping, folding, sewing and manipulating fabric in many ways to resist dye colour to create stunning patterns and designs.

In fact you will find many wonderful ideas to make stitched shibori patterns in my blog on this website. Besides you can also buy my download patterns which show in detail how to make shibori patterns.

Examples of How Shibori Skills Can be Used

Furthermore, the use of stitched shibori can be part of the growing movement of repurposing clothing and buying less. The patterns can be used on your newly created garments or can be added to thrift store finds to make beautiful garments. They can also be used to decorate household textiles, like cushions, quilts, lampshades and throws.

Examples of How The patterns are Created

In addition these photos show how the designs are made. To create a shibori design you start with a plain piece of cotton, linen or silk. Then the fabric is stitched almost like embroidery stitching. The photos show the fabric sewn, gathered and scrunched up ready for dyeing. Where the fabric is stitched and bound and folded the dye cannot penetrate leaving a design on the finished textile. Please click on the video at the top as it outlines and explains the process of shibori in detail.

Annabel Wilson of Townhill Studio has worked with shaping textiles to create her Shibori lamps, scarves and hangings for more than 15 years. She loves to develop new ideas and decorative designs. She starts with a plain white fabric on which the design is drawn. Then it is individually hand stitched, all the stitches pulled up and then dyed either with natural plant dyes or Procion based dyes.

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