Shibori with painting

I wanted to continue my idea of the use of the scars to show visible damage, and so I did a series of tests using some of my indigo shibori samples.


Indigo shibori – painted and stitched samples


Indigo shibori painted with watercolours

I really like the watercolour against theĀ  blue of the indigo. It give a dramatic effect and looks very like a fresh wound. Watercolour would obviously washout so I want to explore this further either with dye-na-flow or using diluted Dylon fabric paints.

Because I want these three projects to come together as a coherent group of pieces, I continue to consider the ideas of remains. What is left after these lives have been lived.

In a charity shop I came across a cotton dress that would fit a 5 year old (the age that Henrietta would have been when she saw her mother kill her brother and then attempt to take her own life).

I am drawn to the idea of cloth retaining memory, but also Henrietta’s inability to forget those early memories that remained with her for the rest of her life, and ended with her labelled a lunatic in a pauper workhouse. These are indelibly marked within her life like a stain that cannot be removed.

Because I only have the one dress and no similar fabric to test on, I decided to photograph the dress and I then used tracing paper to overlay potential ideas and layouts.


After this I created a mock up within photoshop to get as close to my idea as possible before taking the plunge creating it.


I placed the shibori spiralled circle over the area of the heart deliberately to reference a shattered life and broken heart. The scar runs right through it and remains bright red because of the inability to heal such a drastic life event. The dirty stained and brown dress resembles that of a workhouse uniform.

Digital Mock Up for idea

Digital Mock Up for idea



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