Archiving the Tie Dyed Paper Portfolio

Fantasy Creatures


As I mentioned, I have found some materials related to a book Anne was thinking of writing in1975. Whilst the prospect was rejected by her publishers Mills and Boon, they did encourage her to pursue publication of the work in magazines. I have found no evidence this took place, but I have found several original collages created in preparation and accompanying poems or songs for some of these pieces. Whilst the title of the book is unclear and may not have been decided, the concept was to be a series of "Fantasy Creatures" which Anne had created for her own grandchildren, and wished to share in a craft and rhymes books for children.

I seen in Tie Dyed Paper 1975

25th April

I have finished recording and photographing/scanning the tie dyed paper archive. This included various materials from the first box and two portfolios of samples and collages. The portfolios included several examples used in Anne's book Tie Dyed Paper (1975) and a number of collages for a fourth book she had been planning.

From Mademoiselle Magazine’s Paint your Wagon Fashion Ideas

Ritt 12.jpg

28th March: First Day working in the archive

After an initial introduction session to the archive I was allowed to spend my first day working with the materials alone. Intitially I have decided to concentrate on the materials relating to the Tie-Dyed Paper book which Anne published in 1975. Items include photographs, letters, manuscripts, transparencies and negatives which are mixed with other various items in a box. I am currently in the process of recording and photographing or scanning each item where appropriate whilst making brief notes for each item I encounter which is not linked to Tie Dyed Paper as i go along in the hope that i will be able to come back to these items and list them. Next up the portfolio of Tie Dye samples!

Tie Dyed Paper 1975

19th Feb: Anne's Biography

I read a copy of Anne's handwritten biography, which was very interesting and helpful in establishing a chronology of her career. I am hoping this will be useful in identifying and dating her research materials...

18th Feb: Preliminary meeting

 I had my preliminary meeting with Jane Holt from Archives to talk about my project plan and a quick look at the materials. Some of the tie-dye samples are very beautiful! I can't wait to propely examine and photograph them!

The Tie Dyenosaur

The Tie-Dyenosaur

A real live dinosaur you never saw

Any who did so would quickly withdraw

But one made of paper, would not over awe!

So why not try making a tie-dinosaur!


Fold used envelopes, new or waste paper

Secure with pegs, or put binding over

Then immerse these bundles in dyes strong and bold

Leave till it has soaked to the innermost fold


Remove all bundles from the bowls of dye

Put them on newspaper to drain and dry

Undo them and iron out flat, on paper, draw

Then cut out the shape of your tie-dyenosaur


Place and paste dyed papers on this with care

Fashion a beast both lively and debonair

Mount him on a tie-dyed background if required

Stand back! You creation can now be admired

Anne Maile 1968

Anne Maile 1968 Crop.1.PNG

Examples of paper tie-dye


Anne Maile C.1971

Description of my project

The aim of my project is to carry out the preliminary listing and recording of the Anne Maile archive collection with the aim of listing the collection on the CALM database which provides an online access record. The collection has been donated to the college by Anne’s family in light of her association with Camberwell School of Art and Design and includes examples of her work, teaching notes, slides, and two reels of film among other items. Each item will need to be identified, photographed and stored in the appropriate materials before the details are recorded on the CALM database. The ultimate aim of the project will be to enable students and researchers to access the archive by browsing the contents listed on the CALM database. There is also a long-term aim that this work might lead to the collection being added to VADS which would further facilitate access to this collection.

Anne Maile "In the tall grass" c.1971

Anne Maile: The Old Alchemist

Anne Maile was born in Anstey and studied Drawing and Industrial Design at Leicester College of Art and Crafts. For three years she worked as a knitwear designer at a factory in Leicester. In 1934 Anne married, she moved to London and had children. It wasn’t until these children were old enough to go to school that Anne found she had the time to attend Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts to study Fabric Design in 1950 where she studied Fabric Printing. Here, she was introduced to Tie-Dying by her lecturer and soon she was experimenting with different shapes, patterns and dyes in her own kitchen, innovating her own techniques as she went along. At this point, very little was known or written about Tie Dye, as her interest in the process grew, Anne visited museums and researched tie-dye techniques from around the world. After some time Anne became more methodical in her approach, and began to keep books of her samples and experiments with the technique and her work began to create some interest among fellow students at Camberwell. Eventually Anne was invited to give a talk on Tie and Dye at a Summer Short Course for teachers from training colleges, it was evident interest was catching on as Anne began to be invited to give more and more lectures on the technique. As a result of this growing interest Anne decided to write her first book on the subject ‘Tie and Dye as a present day craft’ which was published in 1963 which has since been reprinted several times and translated into various languages. Anne would go on to publish two further books, ‘Tie and Dye Made Easy’ in 1971 and ‘Tie-Dyed Paper’ in 1975. In 1964 Anne had an exhibition of her work at Foyles Art Gallery, and another at Foyles in 1967. She also had her work exhibited in a touring collection.

Anne also collaborated with Dylon on a pamphlet entitled “Tie and Dye with Dylon” and articles on Tie and Dye which were featured in most women’s magazines. By 1971, owing to illness Anne had to give up most of her schedule giving talks on Tie and Dye at institutions and galleries, but she continued to experiment with the technique at home and published two further books during this period. In 1973 the BBC invited Ann to take part in the Serendipity series on Arts and Crafts. Anne was also a fellow of the Society of Designer Craftsmen and a member of the British Crafts Centre.

Unfortunately Anne passed away in 1975 at the height of interest in Tie and Dye, at the time she was exploring the possibilities of paper Tie Dye and had published her final book on this subject.


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