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July 2021 Newsletter
The World of Indigo
by Judy Newland
Indigo is a dye deeply embedded in cultures around the world. Indigo dyeing is both art and science and touches multiple disciplines, such as botany, chemistry, medicine, economics, politics, and fashion. We also can’t ignore the history of indigo, because textiles reveal so much about cultural and social history. It has been recognized as the “king of dye” for millennia, though today we’re most familiar with it as the coloring for blue jeans. The use of the plant’s blue dye for adornment, religious ritual, and as a symbol of political and social status occurred independently in cultures around the world.
by Caroline Worrell
Warp painting isn’t just for acid dyes or fabric pigments—you can paint a warp with natural dye extracts too. Hand-painting lets you design the overall look of your warp, giving you full creative control over its design. The painted pattern can be organic and free-flowing or a structured repeat. In this tutorial, I’ll make stripes for a hand-painted ikat effect. This is a great project for beginner natural dyers or those interested in learning to make some basic natural dye extracts.
Stay tuned for more! In Part 2, we’ll use natural dyes for the weft. In Part 3, we’ll weave a project on the Mighty Wolf Loom with all this beautiful yarn.
- Art and Ewe dye kit, with yarn skeins and food-safe dyes—no special equipment needed!
- Easel Weaver Kit, with 8″ loom and weaving tools
- Full video course on our learning site!