The fabric for this top was dyed during the Fibres West Retreat I attended in July, and was a pillowcase in its previous life. It was a pretty fancy pillowcase with lines of pintucks, some of which had come adrift and I discovered that I don’t have a pintucking foot so had to do the repairs the old fashioned way, which is not recommended. The pillowcase had also seen better days with the odd tear scattered through the fabric.
I didn’t use it for anything whilst I was on the retreat, but I did dye it whilst I was there, using a few eucalyptus twigs, steaming it in a pot of Marri bark which had come from our block, and I think I wrapped it round a piece of rusty rebar.
I so loved some of the detail I got and knew I couldn’t waste it. This is probably my favourite little bit and I had to do some visible mending because the fabric was pretty worn. However, I rather like all those stitching holes and patches.
I think I got this really good definition because I was able to roll it up really tightly with the aid of another participant.
I had the smallest amount of fabric as this was a really little pillowcase, so I had to hunt for a pattern that I could modify to make a cropped top. I had half a metre if I was lucky and used Vogue 8062, view B, which is a simple t-shirt with grown on short sleeves which I’ve had since 1990. I had to use bias binding on all the hems as I just didn’t have enough fabric to turn proper hems. The pattern has no darts or shaping so it was perfect for this fabric.
The back view isn’t quite as pretty as the front but I still really like it.
Little successes like this really feed my interest in natural dyeing and I think that I am going to do some linen next.