Monday, June 23, 2008

What is it?

Having behaved myself and stayed away from all thrift stores for the past three days, I couldn't resist popping over to Goodwill during my lunch hour. And, in what seems to be a recurring feature on my blog, I thought I'd post a "what is it?" tonight.


This seems to be developing into a pattern of behavior--me buying stuff and then trying to figure out what I've bought. And I'm sure glad I have all of you to help me! I think this is a tablerunner of sorts. It's either a linen or a looser weave cotton. I don't know how old it is, but it's in pretty good shape. What fascinates me, though, is the silhouette images dyed in blue on the white fabric. How did they do that? I've shown it to a few people and all of us are puzzled by the fact that the dye didn't bleed into the fabric. Two people suggested it may have been done using a stencil. There's no difference in texture between the dyed and non-dyed parts of the fabric, and the dye goes through to the other side--it's actually pretty well reversible. Whatever it is, it's really interesting. Have you seen anything like it before? Here's a close up of one of the images:


When I got to the thrift store, I saw a woman I recognized from quilting, so I just made a cursory inspection of the glassware and hurried to the textiles before she got there. Am I bad or what?! I found that runner together with a few other wonderful things--a white pillowcase with a scalloped and blue-crocheted edge, another white pillowcase with cutwork and blue embroidery, and a small round embroidered linen tabletopper. I just can't resist the lacy, embroidered handwork on these things!

I wish I had my camera with me, though, because I would have liked to show you a photo of what I DID resist: A quilt or afghan made up of polyester double knit squares (approximately 4" squares) crocheted together with off-white yarn. Boy was that thing UGLY! And heavy! But it was SO completely representative of handcrafts in the 1960's that I was really tempted to take it home as a piece of history; still, I knew there was no way I'd ever display it, and my drawers are quite full enough as it is, so I left it on the rack.


After finishing the Hat Trick quilt top, I'm really starting to think about the blue and white color scheme for my summertime kitchen. Probably because of that, my eye was caught by a small bowl and matching teacup--no saucer, but I have other blue and white saucers, and these things often mix and match pretty well. Then I saw a Mikasa blue and white serving bowl--I'm thinking it just might make a pretty fruit bowl for my hutch. Oh, and a white Butter Bell--that one's not for me though. I have a Christmas gift basket idea, so I'll put that away for later.

Don't forget--if you'd like a chance to win the Hat Trick pattern, leave a comment HERE. The drawing will be late Wednesday night. I'm glad you could stop in to visit!

10 comments:

Eileen said...

Kim, your blue and white runner looks like something my DGD might do at art school. Trying a new techniqe. Interesting but what can you do with it? Frame it,put patchwork around it?

The blue and white cups and bowl are nice. Soon you will have a blue and white kitchen.

mamaspark said...

I wonder if the original fabric was the blue. Then they put the images on the blue and sprayed a bleach solution on it to make the cloth around the images turn white? I did this with t-shirts when my kids were little (actually they did this, I just got the supplies together). We used leaves from around the woods, but that's how there was a dark image, with no bleeding and light background! I'm just sayin...

mamaspark said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ratherbquilting said...

I'm going with the idea of the person using a wax resist. Maybe they cut the pattern out of something like contact paper, stuck that down on the white fabric, then painted over the entire thing with the wax, then removed the contact paper and dyed it blue. The waxed part stays white and the wax itself comes out by using paper towels or something as pressing cloths and ironing over it repeatedly with a hot iron. I THINK. Or not??? I love it, BTW! I say frame it!!

Annemiek said...

Visited a local textile factory/museum a while ago and they had a machine to "print" images through and through a piece of fabric.
I think it could well be that your "tablerunner" was used\as a background for puppet play like a kind of punch-and-judy. Looks a bit chinese to me (but that could just be me:) and they have numerous backgrounds for their puppet "shows". On the other hand I could well be completely wrong *lol*

paula, the quilter said...

I was going to say it was probably silk screened. I think that the machine Annemiek saw was probably something similar to what is used in tee-shirt printing factories.

Lorraine said...

..that's it.....lunchtime today I am going to one of the op shops....one of the girls I stitch with shops in op (opportunity) shops all the time and finds great stuff...I just seem to find ...well nothing! but you have inspired me to look beyond the obvious.....that runner is fabulous btw.... Japanese? and of good quality...well done....
are you signing up for the cupcake swap on Sharons blog.....I couldn't resist.....I love anything cupcake.....will let you know how my op shopping goes....

Nan said...

It's interesting reading what the other ladies think your "find" is, as I have absolutely no clue. Your blue and white dishes are very pretty, and so is the pillowcase and embroidered table topper. You really find some wonderful treasures, Kim!

Vallen said...

I love the blue and white theme. Not that's talented thrifting!!!

Karen said...

I like the quilt on the wall in the before picture. Very nice.
I have no idea about your blue & white piece except it is very interesting. Looks oriental. Your blue & white pieces are nice,too. I am always attracted to them. You sure got some great buys. Our Goodwill stores never have anything that good.