What you will need:
Old pillowcase in a 100% natural fibre (light in colour)
Old pan no longer used for cooking
Sewing machine or needle and thread
Stick/dowel 40cm width
Cut an old pillowcase into two pieces separating the front and the back. Divide the front into two again vertically.
- Take the two smaller pieces of fabric and soak them in water for at least an hour. (If you are using new fabric or a pillow case that hasn't been washed a lot you must boil in a teaspoon of eco friendly soap, washing soda and water for an hour, drain and rinse the fibres well then soak.)
- To make the vat you must have a collection of onion skins, I used 30g of red and 30g white skins. If you would like to make two colours use the skins separately.
- Half fill a small/medium pan with water (it is advisable to use a pan that you no longer use for cooking for any plant dyeing). You will need enough water so your skins and fibre can move freely.
- Then add the onion skins to the water and simmer for 40-60 mins.
- Drain the onion skins from the pan saving the liquid which should be a good strong colour. Return the liquid to the pan and add one piece of the fabric. Simmer the pan on a low heat for up to an hour. Make sure the fabric is submerged and stir from time to time. leave fabric in pan overnight to cool.
- Remove fabric, rinse until water runs clear/wash in an eco friendly detergent. Hang to dry.
- Cut a rectangular piece from the un dyed fabric - I used a piece 30cm by 45cm. This will form the back of the wall hanging.
- To make the front you need to work to the same dimensions as the back piece. Choose your design (see examples below) cut pieces to the design and remember to add a 1cm seam allowance. Stitch the pieces together and press seams flat.
- Join the right sides of front and back pieces together. Sew along three of the sides (portrait) leaving the top of the piece un sewn.
- Turn inside out and press.
- Along the un sewn top edge you need to fold the fabric towards the back of the hanging (I folded 4cm and press flat) Then use a simple running stitch along the bottom of the folded edge through the front and back forming a loop running across the top. Thread through a stick or piece of dowel. Tie a piece of string to either edge of the dowel and hang.