Back to All Events

June 20-21 Natural Dyes Weekend

  • Oil and Cotton 817 W Davis St Dallas, TX, 75208 United States (map)


Saturday and Sunday, June 20 and 21, 12-4pm
Instructor: Sarah Westrup

During this two-day workshop we will experiment dyeing with indigo, cochineal, and marigold to receive the full spectrum of natural color on cotton. All participants will learn the basics of natural dyes, how to extract color, what are mordants and tannins, and how to use them to prep cotton for the dye bath. Every one will leave with a collection of swatches and six 17”x17” handkerchiefs dyed and designed by the student artist themselves!

* Students are welcomed to bring any addition cotton cloth to dye. Please be prepared to bring all cotton cloth on day one of the workshop.  

DAY ONE: Organic Indigo BLUE + clay RESIST
Date: Saturday, June 20
Time: 12pm-4pm
Participants will learn how to make an organic indigo vat from scratch using indigo, iron, and lime. Titled the mineral vat, this indigo recipe produces beautiful blues exclusively on cotton fibers. All participants will explore tying and dyeing techniques as well as how to mix a clay resist paste that can be painted on fabric to prevent indigo dye from penetrating designed areas. Students will also learn how to tannin and mordant fibers so cloth will be ready to paint and dye for day two. 
Materials include:
(3) 17” x 17” cotton scarves

DAY TWO: Printing on Cotton
Cochineal RED + Marigold YELLOW
Date: Sunday, June 21
Time: 12pm-4pm
Participants will explore the process of preparing dried cochineal bugs and marigold flowers for the dye bath to receive beautiful reds, pinks, purples, yellows, and greens on cotton. Students will learn how to create painted patterns on cotton using thickened mordants and observe the varied results between tannined and un-tannined cloth.
Materials include:
(3) 17” x 17” cotton scarves


Later Event: July 11
Painting with Natural Dyes