Welcome to my world of natural dye pot journeys.
I am continually learning with my dyeing. I love the whole process of it – the collecting of the leaves (or at times I buy some of the eucalyptus leaves that don’t grow in my area), I also use leaves from my garden and my kids are used to me pulling over while driving (rather quickly at times) to trim leaves off branches that have fallen or have been brought down in stormy weather. I have a large collection (now) of a variety of pots to brew up my dye, most of these I have found very cheaply from op-shops/thrift shops. A lot of my fabrics are also found in op-shops, cotton or wool cardigans, jumpers or linen shirts (a great source of buttons as well) to re-purpose, cut up or to dye for a unique piece of clothing. Then the fun begins, brewing up the dye, wrapping the cloth up with the leaves, plunging the bundles into the pot and then the wait begins. I am not very good at this part of the process, I want to open it up and see what has happened.
I have had some beautiful pieces come out of the dye pot but also some dramatic failures. This is all part of my journey into the dye pot and I am loving it!!!
I am an huge fan of India Flint‘s work and one day hope to be able to attend a workshop with this extremely talented and passionate creator and storyteller. India has published 2 fabulous books – Eco Colour botanical dyes for beautiful textiles and Second Skin choosing and caring for textiles and clothing. If you are at all interested in natural dyeing I recommend that you visit your local library or purchase India’s books.
So here is a little glimpse into my dye pot journeys.
A re-purposed linen shirt created into an apron or pinny with silk pockets and hand stitched with silk thread dyed in the dye pot.
A cotton sweatshirt still wet out of the dye pot with the colours quite vibrant and rich. I used a variety of eucalyptus leaves and greavillea leaves.
A recently dyed t-shirt using eucalyptus leaves, grevillea leaves and berries (which have left a great dot resist from the seeds inside them). Little surprises like this are why I love this form of dyeing.
A cotton cardigan that I bought at an op-shop / thrift shop for a couple of dollars and dyed it with a variety of eucalyptus leaves.
Eucalyptus leaves creating their magic in the dye pot.
Awaiting the reveal. Bundles out of the dye pot.
I find this the hardest part of the whole process as time is the friend of the wrapped bundles but I am always in such a hurry to see what has happened in the pot.
I need to work on my patience!!!