Introduction to Itajime, Japanese Paper Tie-Dyeing Technique



The excitement of a child ‘opening a surprise package’ occurs with the unfurling of each bundle of itajime dyed paper (Japanese for fold and clamp)! Learn intricate traditional patterns and processes while exploring various dye and coloring possibilities for paper. Itajime can be highly skilled and controlled but always also offers the unexpected. Work from simple to complex in this structured workshop as your personal stack of amazing papers grows! Towards the end of the workshop you will be given the opportunity to create a Japanese style “stab bound” book with the itajime paper as a cover as well as some folded origami forms.


Most of the supplies are included in the workshop. Please purchase or gather prior to the workshop the following supplies:

A few pairs of tight fitting plastic gloves
Work clothes and shoes
A portfolio or tube to take home newly dyed papers
A lunch and snack for the day

If you own the following supplies, please bring them with you.

A pair of scissors
An apron
A blanket that can accommodate possible staining (wool, acrylic or polar fleece)
Papers that you already have that you want to try with itajime papers (absorbent papers are best)


Tickets include most of the supplies for the workshop. Did you know that as a member of the Leighton Art Centre, you can get 10% off the registration of our workshops? Visit our website by clicking here to find out more about our memberships.


Through her artworks, Susan Kristoferson investigates the fissure between the tangible and the intangible. She specializes in surface design processes for paper, especially itajime (fold, clamp and dye.) Susan also specializes in hand painted paste papers which utilize a cooked starch paste as the carrier for acrylic paint. Susan creates both large and small collages as well as panels of uniquely patterned papers. She earned a BFA from the University of Texas at Austin and an MFA in Fiber Arts from Indiana University in Bloomington in the USA. An art teacher since 1975 she has taught at all levels. She lives on a ridgetop next to Turner Valley, Alberta and enjoys a spectacular view of the grasslands, foothills and Rocky Mountains in the ever changing light of the big sky of Alberta.