The slow progress with my jacket continues. In the last two weeks I have finally got to the stage where my jacket is looking like a jacket. It is now hanging up on a door in the living room on a hanger.
My next steps are a departure from the pattern instructions. I am constructing a lining for the jacket. I’ve also been following Steffani Lincecum’s Craftsy course on tailoring and I’m therefore using this as a guide for sewing the lining.
Since the silk fabric is white (and there is no way I wear this amount of white as I’m too accident prone) I dyed fabric. Some while ago in the summer I collected dock leaves. For those who aren’t familiar with this plant, it’s very common in the UK and tends to grow on waste ground or at the sides of the road. I found our local park was a good source.
To create the dye I boiled the dock leaves for an hour to produce a brown-ish gloop and stored this in a glass jar on the window sill. Babs from Botanical Inks (where I did a dyeing workshop) suggested that dyestuffs could be left in the sun to produce a stronger colour.
I created a dye bath by tipping my dock leaf brew (complete with leaves) into a large saucepan and topping it up with water to cover the fabric. I don’t think that my saucepan is really big enough to dye this quantity of fabric, and unsure whether I would be able to evenly dye my silk, I decided to shibori tie-dye it. At least this way, my dyeing would be intentionally uneven!
Unfortunately, despite sterilising the glass jar, the dye had fermented a little and I got a distinctly bacterial whiff when I opened the jar. Undeterred I still decided to used it, but boiling the fabric in the dye bath on the hob for an hour, was a very stinky business and not to be recommended. Actually, that doesn’t come anywhere near describing how bad it was. I had to open all the windows in the kitchen and hold my jumper over my nose to stop myself gagging each time I entered the room! In the future, I’ll try to use my dyestuff before it starts to go off!
Notwithstanding the stench, the dye worked very well and gave rather lovely light brown or ecru. More importantly a quick wash after taking it out of the dye bath and it doesn’t smell either.
The next stage will be cutting the lining pieces an constructing my lining. The question is whether I will have a jacket before the new year?