Textile Marbling Workshop

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After two years of only going to 100% necessary inside places, I cracked and took an in-person workshop. There were a lot of bare faces, but us masked folk all gravitated to the same table near the open the door. I didn’t realize how much I missed making stuff with other people until the six hours had whizzed by and I felt super energized. Anyway, I’m really hoping we’re all healthy after spending so much time breathing in a room together.

The end product of marbling isn’t really my jam but it’s a fucking fun process. Wildcraft provided a beautiful little booklet with instructions for doing this at home.

Each participant was given a cut of pre-treated cotton fabric, one cotton bandana, one large piece of silk, and an individual marbling tub. Each table also had a larger basin to share and everyone rotated through doing one large sample in the big tub pictured up above. I had so much fun playing I only took three photos during the workshop so here’s a short video of what the process looks like.

Marbling really forces you to let go – you don’t really know how the paints are going to interact with each other, or which colors are going to actually show up on the fabric. Most of the colors I’m drawn to weren’t very vibrant once transferred to fabric.

Knowing I was going to have a lot of small cotton samples, I tried to stick with the same colors so they could be used in a mini quilt project, which I started sewing immediately at home.

I decided to cut up this blue piece because the fabric wasn’t great quality, I didn’t think I’d ever use it as bandana (its edges were finished), and I needed something to bind the wall hanging with. All of my other scraps didn’t quite work with the marbled fabric.

I just pieced the samples together and did a simple stitch in the ditch quilting pattern. The binding was machine sewn onto the front then folded and pressed to the back for hand-stitching.

I added little triangles to the corners so it can be hung on the wall and drilled some holes in scrap wood to mount.

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