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August 15, 2019 / weavingschool

Thoughts on Natural Dyes

I’ll have to admit, I never really “got” the use of using extracts for natural dyes. After all, wasn’t part of the lure of natural dyeing going out in the woods and finding the dye materials. Well, all that went by the wayside when I took a class from Donna Brown (link to her garden project) at Shakerag Workshops this summer. First of all, somebody did go out and pick and process the actual dye materials, it just wasn’t me swatting misquotes and trudging through tall grasses. I even sent my granddaughter out to pick Queen Ann’s Lace for one of the many dye pots I did the rest of the summer because I guess I’m just a little older that I was when I started this adventure in the 1970 and 80s. But most importantly, natural dye extracts can be thickened and used to make beautiful art cloth by stamping, painting, or silk screening.  Combined with the ability to change the color of the cloth by changing the pH using discharging and darkening agents, the possibilities are ever expanding. Now I have stacks of yardage and yarns to keep me busy this winter when the plant materials have died back and the water in the three season workroom has been turned off before the first freeze.
Here is a small sampling of what I’ve done so far.

One Comment

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  1. Veronica / Aug 16 2019 4:02 pm

    You got some great colors from the natural dyes!

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