Hapa-Zome: The Art of Pounding Flowers
My daughter loves art and smashing things (yep), so I have wanted to try hapa-zome with her for a long time. The term means “leaf-dye” in Japanese, and was coined by India Flint, author of Eco Colour: Botanical Dyes for Beautiful Textiles. This was simple, fun, physical and the results were stunning. Just head outside with your hammers and give it a try!
WHAT YOU NEED
- Cloth or paper
- A hammer (we couldn’t find ours, so we used a rock!)
- Some flowers, leaves or other plants. Make it more wild and free time by encouraging the kids collect the plants and colors they are drawn to.
WHAT YOU DO
1. Place the cloth or piece of paper on a hard surface (we used a log).
2. Arrange the plant material on the fabric or paper.
3. Fold over the cloth or paper and have the kids start to hammer! If you want to protect the cloth more, you can put a piece of paper over it before pounding.
4. Open the cloth and remove the plant material.
5. Let dry.
WHAT WE LEARNED
Next time we will try just using the petals, because I think the stems caused some of the darker areas. There are other things you can do to improve the quality and technique such as using a pre-mordant on the cloth, but simpler is better for us these days. If things take too long to set up, the kids just run away into the forest (which is just as well 🙂 )
Below is our result using just a piece of paper. When we got inside my daughter asked if she could smash a few blue berries on it, and the color from them turned out amazing! It ended up looking like a butterfly, so we talked about mirror images and symmetry found in nature.
MORE LOVELY STUFF
If you are as hooked as us, here are some other hapa-zome projects to try:
Did you try it? Head on over the the Wilder Child Facebook and post a picture of your results!
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Your Woman Gone Wild,