Not the final day of the course, but the final day of dyeing. We have been through all the processes used in dyeing Turkey Red through a long sequence of carefully managed samples prepared by tutor Deb Bamford. Today we dyed the final stage. The temperature of the dyepot was raised and maintained and the prepared fabric was immersed, with one of the group stirring it continuously.
At the end of the dye period, we lifted the cotton from the pot. We had achieved a good, characteristic, Turkey Red.
Various experiments and variations continued in the room and explanations and notes added to ‘the wall’.
Tomorrow is the last day and for tutors and students, it finishes at noon. For our course, the morning will be spent sorting and sharing samples and clarifying processes.
Deb Bamford is highly organised; if she hadn’t been, this intensely complex course could have descended to chaos and dyeing mightn’t have been completed accurately, safely, or at all. Deb explained everything clearly and directly; she really knows her stuff. The student group has been pleasant, co-operative and multi-skilled, which has added to an enjoyable (and valuable) week.
The Trade Fair opened at the Summer School this afternoon with stands selling spinning and weaving equipment, yarns, books, fabrics and trimmings. I helped set up the stand for the Journal for Weavers, Spinners and Dyers for which I work as a volunteer editor.
Tomorrow classrooms and the Trade Fair are open to the public. In the evening there is a Gala Dinner with a speaker, and then it will be time to pack up and go home.
Two unrelated observations: it has been a great luxury to be on a course as a student and not a tutor, but it’s peculiar that I am more tired this way round.
The other is that they have some mighty fierce mosquitoes in Wales. I had hoped there was an interesting word for mosquito in Welsh, but it seems it’s mosgito. Oh.