I took a shibori class last Sunday. I wasn’t sure about taking it, but I did anyway. I’ve done the wrapping fabric around a pipe shibori using fabric paints, and I’ve done the rubber band binding method using dyes. This class was the stitch by hand method.
For the techniques that could have been done using rubber bands, I was not excited to sit and do all that stitching by hand. I did discover I’m fairly quick at it. The sample on the left was made by binding “fingers” of fabric using cord. The sample on the right was made by stitching heart shapes, pulling the threads tight and then binding the fabric in the center of the heart.
It’s a little hard to see the heart shapes. The one in the upper left shows the best.
Unfortunately, that was the sum total of what she planned to teach us in a whole day class. Out of sheer boredom, I asked the woman behind me to show me what they did in the Friday class. Here’s my sample of those techniques.
I tried four different stitches. At the top was a double row of straight stitches. Then I tried a row with the fabric folded and the stitching done in a half circle off the fold. Then I tried two rows of straight stitching on folded fabric. Last I tried a rope stitch. The rope stitch was the least successful.
I can see myself using shibori in the future to dye fabrics for specific projects, especially the straight stitch and the half circle on the fold. I can’t see myself binding with anything other than rubber bands. It’s so much faster and easier than using cord. There were also a number of techniques she didn’t show us because she was not familiar with them.
It’s definitely something I’d like to play with in the future. Maybe over the summer I’ll check a book out of the library and experiment with some of the other techniques. It would make a great take-along project.