Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Studio Series: Mennonite screen prints

Mennonite series Red Gate and threshing stone pattern screen prints; Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2016
My ironing table doubles as a print table, but I've never used it to screen print. A first step in setting up the table was to clear the foot high piles of fabric that covered most of it. To accomplish this, I went through most of my fabric bins and did a significant purge so that the fabric on the ironing table finally had a proper home. Two friends will be the beneficiaries of my deaccessioned stash. 

I hadn't printed on fabric since my Sheridan days. My husband set up a hose in the laundry room sink so that I was able to wash my screens with enough pressure to prevent clogging. My husband held the screen while I printed. We make a great team. I printed on commercial and naturally dyed fabrics. The honey locust bean pod dyed fabric looks great printed with rust fabric ink.
Mennonite series Mulberry leaf pattern screen prints; Photo © Karen Thiessen, 2016
While I was printing fabric, I printed some paper so that I can collage with it. What I learned from going through my bins was to buy and print fabrics in small, usable quantities. I print larger quantities of paper because collaging is more immediate than hand-stitching fabric.

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