Natural dyeing with avocado seeds: step by step instructions

Dyeing with avocado is a safe and simple process, perfect for beginners to natural dyeing. Both the seeds (also called stones or pits) and the skins contain colour. They produce a quite colourfast dye of the most unexpected and delightful pink. The exact colour you get will be affected by which variety of avocado you […]

Mordanting with cow’s milk

When doing natural dyeing or eco-printing on plant-based fibres such as cotton, you need to prepare the fabric with something to help the plant dyes adhere. This could be mordants such as metals or tannins. Or you could use a protein-rich binder such as soy milk, cow’s milk, eggs or blood. These emulate the results that you will get […]

Meditative drawing on eco-printed paper

Drawing over the top of eco-printed paper is a lovely project to do with all the samples that accumulate. It can be a meditative process, and can also inspire new ways of drawing. The photo below shows symmetrical paper eco-prints that I created by sandwiching plant matter between two pieces of paper and wrapping them around […]

Shibori eco-print woollen coat

I have been continuing to experiment with shibori and eco-print combinations. This coat was made with some of the precious eucalyptus leaves I gathered in Broken Hill. Their gum blossoms make the most incredible prints. The dark shibori-style patches were made with eucalyptus bark plus iron placed in the dye pot, which only the exposed […]

Eco-prints and shibori on wool

Combining shibori and eco-printing methods can create dynamic designs that have both structured and organic elements. To create this design, I used woollen thermal garments, eucalyptus leaves, wooden boards and string. The eucalyptus leaves were placed onto wool, which was then folded up using a simple shibori accordion fold. The garments were pressed between the […]

Deciduous leaves eco-print

I’ve been busy testing a range of different leaves, using the eco-printing method described in my first ebook. Although that ebook focuses on eucalyptus leaves, which are still my favourite, the method works well for many other leaves. This is a sampler of mixed deciduous leaves: oak, blackberry, cotinus (smokebush) and two types of maple. […]

Eco-printing workshop

Last weekend I ran my first full-day eco-printing on cotton workshop. I had a lovely group of enthusiastic women join me at my house to explore the theoretical and practical aspects of this method of natural dyeing. We spent the morning talking about choosing and preparing leaves and fabric and making a mordant. I demonstrated […]