Bo Maki Shibori

Let’s get back to some fiber! The Liebster nomination mentioned my great fiber blog, but it’s been anything but recently….

Isn’t this an odd-looking thing? It sat in the basement for over a year…… It looks like a cocoon doesn’t it? And it will turn into something wonderful!

Bo maki

I sewed and bound it as a demonstration during a class I was teaching and just never got around to dyeing it. When we were cleaning out the basement area downstairs, I spied it and decided that I had put too much work into it to toss it…

Dyeing fabric on pipes is a messy business and I do like to do it warmer weather. I park the bucket by the sewage drains in the yard so I can easily dump the dye water. {Buckets of water are so heavy!} While I was waiting for the Salvation Army truck to come and pick up some big things, I started the brew.

Dyeing in the yard

I was in a hurry, so I dumped some blue and magenta into the bucket, stirred it around and put the pipe in. Every now and then I moved the pipe around to stir the dye, but of course I generally want a mottled look so I don’t do it often.

Here’s the finished piece. The long stripes are the Bo Maki part. Can you can see a dark line between the two scrunchy parts? The fabric was folded there. Above and below the scrunchy lines, you can see the holes where I hand sewed the pleats or ruffles to the pipe and then gathered it. In the top photo you can barely  see that strips of bike tires are tied around the top and bottom of the fabric to keep it tightly gathered and on the pipe. I learned this interesting technique from Akemi Nakano Cohn, who called it Bo Maki. She is a fabulously talented fiber artist who spent years in her homeland of Japan learning dyeing techniques from masters. When I google that term, nothing like this comes up but I certainly believe her.

Completed bo maki

The wonderful floral bursts are marbles with rubber bands wrapped around them. They are so fun and easy! This fabric is now stuffed inside some box or other, wondering what it will be used for…

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