Breakdown Printing with Colour Studies : Leslie Morgan 2019

Magic Breakdown - Colour and Structure.jpg
Magic Breakdown - Colour and Structure.jpg

Breakdown Printing with Colour Studies : Leslie Morgan 2019


A 5 day course, of structured Breakdown Printing this year is a repeat of the first which filled in a day. Controlled Breakdown can give you the chance to create predictable imagery and/or texture. Using a specific colour harmony and it's contrasts will enhance this outcome. The control, facilitates complex layering to achieve related fabrics or compositional whole-cloth.

Dates: June 24- 28 2019

Venue: Committed to Cloth Studio, Surrey

Course Fee: £450 + £40 supplies / Deposit £225

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Dates: Dates: June 24 -28 2019

Experience Level: suitable for all levels
Class size: 11
Venue: Drewshearne Barn, Crowhurst Land End, Oxted, RH8 9NT
 Class fees: £450 + £40 supplies fee

Lunches provided

Studio Times: Please arrive between 8.30 - 9.30am for each session. The class will begin no later than 9:30am and finish at 5pm.

About Leslie

Colour has been my passion for over 25 years. I was fortunate to study with Nancy Crow early in my career and discover COLOUR! I realised that as I was learning techniques, my design focus, should be about simultaneously learning about colour.

Even through the years I used Black, White and Greys I was still excited about colour. I worked with colour intuitively discovering as I was stocking my shelves, and finding the colours that were missing.

It became clear that I needed a more precise way of building harmonious families of colour that fed my intuition, but had a logic to produce more understandable and repeatable results. This has taken me from a simple 15 colour family to so many variations that this year I teach a second course. Colour Studies Two.

A combined Breakdown and Colour Studies course developed from a Colour Studies course I taught in Germany with the early autumn weather too good to not use the colour families for Breakdown Printing. The results were magical and expanded the potential of Breakdown Printing as a deliberate tool!

Aims of the course

This very personal experience is definitely a course where you learn as much from other class members, as you do from me. 

Learn how use Mx dyes to develop an extensive palette using eight colours.

Build harmonious colour and value schemes, to create contrasts that will enrich, energise and/or pop.

Create a visual reference of colour and value relationships, as a colour source

Establish a method to explore any colour and value scheme of your choice.

Use Procion Mx dye-paints to explore Breakdown Printing in a controlled way.

This class will teach all the variables of Breakdown Printing in a very personal way, and personal colour scheme,  to add a new potential to the way you work, or even use your Breakdown. 

What to bring


Please stay with a single type of high-quality, natural fibre cloth as you will develop a greater understanding of how colours and values perform. By high quality, think Cotton Sateen, Silk-Cotton or a medium-weight silk (nothing light and flimsy). The studio has good stocks of  a vary good quality cotton sateen and silk/cotton mix If you wish to source from the studio, please let me know.  Please do NOT bring Calico as it is not suitable for this workshop.

In total, you’ll need between 6 to 8 metres


If your fabric is not PFD, ( prepared for dyeing)  please scour it by washing at 60C, with 3 tbsp of soda ash and a tsp of rinsing agent (e.g. Synthrapol/ Metapex), then dry it.


Create a soda vat large enough for your needs; the basic recipe is 3 tablespoons of soda ash to 1 litre of water. Dissolve sufficient soda ash for your needs in warm (not cold or hot) water and top up with the appropriate amount of cold water.

  • Place the scoured, dry (or spun-dried) cloth in to the soda vat and leave it to soak for 30 minutes.

  • Dry by drip-drying or spin the soda-soaked cloth before line drying (if you have a spin dryer, recycle the run off back into the soda vat). Be careful not to rinse the soda out! It is the setting agent.


Once the fabric is dry, stuff it into a bag (don’t fold or iron).



The supplies fee will include the use of media and various tools, but you will want to bring some personal supplies.

 INSPIRATION! Choose colour sources that excite you.  They should have 4 or more major colours in them – monochromatic does not work for this workshop! The sources can be photographs, postcards, tear-outs from a magazine etc. – keep your references simple.

15 plastic food storage type pots about 4 inches x 4 inches by 2 inches deep. Not too much bigger, and not too much deeper please! With lids ... very important as you will want to keep your colour scheme fresh for a number of days.  These will be a great tool for your future colour studies, and I will bring labels so you can have them at home to continue your studies.  Containers with hinged lids are not suitable!

Various tools; you’ll see that a good supply of tools will be provided but if you have favourite  tools you wish to use, then bring them.

Various bits of tut! : flat objects to press into thickened dye on the bottom of the screen to make textures.  We have a huge selection in the studio, but your own choices will add to the experience. 

Think : A variety of meshes, lace, plastic letters, plactic grids, bubble wrap, etc

One box of ball or small T-headed pins.

TWO 1.25 × 2.5m drop clothes of cotton twill or something similarly sturdy. Please pre-wash it and write your name on all four corners. (also for sale at the studio!)

Two well fitting pairs of rubber gloves

Cloth apron 

Important  Please wear sturdy, flat, rubber-soled sensible shoes with good support. (you’ll be standing a great deal)

Notebook; handouts and recipes will be provided, but be ready to take notes.

Pen and pencil.

A fine permanent pen and a permanent marker.

Your camera.




Lunches, tea/coffee and nibbles and fruit will be provided.

See the Accommodation list, if you need to stay locally

Contact and Directions :

 Leslie Morgan

or Jude Kingshott