Our weekend workshop with Tine Brok of Lucy Redd Raw Ecodyes was just wonderful!
A wealth of information and passion, Tine not only introduced everyone to Ecodyeing, but thoroughly immersed everyone into the limitless possibilities of harnessing mother nature to print on and dye fabric.
Ecodyeing is an ecologically sustainable contact printing technique that transfers leaf dyes to cloth, clay, wood, stone or paper. Tine has been inspired by the pioneering work of India Flint, the accepted birth mother of this craft, but adds her own learnings from many years of experimentation.
Once everyone had settled in and received their little packs containing soft gauzy wool pashminas, specially printed information booklets, and contact information, we got straight to work.
We learnt how to treat animal fibres like wool compared to cellulose fibres from plant materials like hemp, cotton, and the anomalies with certain fibres like soy-based fabrics.
We learnt how to how to reinvigorate dried leaves, how to make our own mordants, how to add "blankets" to our beautifully laid out patterns of leaves and how to tightly bundle and steam or submerge our little "roasts" for a couple of hours for the magic to happen!
We took advantage of our beautiful surroundings at the Hamilton Institute of Rural Learning and went on a walking tour of the grounds and veggie gardens, learning how to identify and sustainably forage for dye-producing leaves and bark and the many varied results that harvesting at different times of year can produce.
We discussed the merits of more predictable botanical printing materials like leaves and onion skins in comparison to the less colourfast flower- and petal-based materials, and saw many examples of the varied effects that can be produced.
The most exciting part of the workshop was unravelling our creations! Everyone was amazed at the range of effects created - from realistic leaf imprints to outlines and block shapes, multi-colours, various textures and even ombre shading.
Fabulously, we also used pieces of second hand bedlinen and blankets as part of the process, so they became dyed too - just look at some of our lovely printed scarves and fabrics!
Lucy runs workshops in and around South West Victoria and South East South Australia, to keep up to date with any upcoming workshops check out her Facebook page; Eucy Redd Raw Ecodyes.
For future Crafternoons, connect with us on Facebook and Instagram!