Friday, May 13, 2016

Ohe Kapala - Bamboo Stamping

Amy and I recently took a class in bamboo stamping (aka Ohe Kapala) from master kapa maker Dalani Tanahy at the Honolulu Art Museum. We learned how to process the bamboo, carve our own stamps and then print on fabric using paint or dye.  Its not as easy as it sounds!

These samples are Amy's -- she is much better at it than I am. She used Jacquard Textile Paint and stamped several rows on a variety of silk scarves.  The idea is to make new designs by lining up each new row of stamping next to the previous row. 

Below is a picture of the stamps Amy used. Some we carved -- most were purchased from the teacher.

The Hawaiians used this method to decorate the kapa (cloth they made from pounding bark from the mulberry tree). It is making a comeback these days as are many things Hawaiian, 

We're hoping to have these available at the Made in Hawaii show in August.   


Katie said...

Hello! Lovely prints! I came across your blog while I was searching for dye supply resources on the big island. I'm in South Kona and want to experiment with some natural dyes, and was wondering if there's a place you get soda ash and other dye products on the island or if you just mail order supplies. Thanks for any info you can share!

Kathy said...

Hi Katie,

You can get soda ash at WalMart or Home Depot in the Pool Supply section. Look for PhUP. As far as other dyeing supplies, you can check Akamai Art Supplu near Costco in Kona. Usually I order from Dharma Trading in California.

Kathy said...

Hi again Katie,

If you're using natural dyes you don't need soda ash. You normally use Alum instead and that you can get at Akamai Art supply as well. Call before you go just to make sure its in stock. If you're using indigo you don't need soda ash but you do need some other chemicals to make the indigo vat. Not sure if you can get those ingredients locally. Depends on what kind of vat you are making.