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Natural Undies Blog — botanical

How to Make an Avocado Pit Dye Bath

Making a dye bath from avocado pits yields a romantic dusty rose color and is surprisingly easy to do. Avocado pits are high in tannin, so it’s common to see articles that suggest you don’t need to mordant your fabric before dyeing with them. While not incorrect, I find this information to be incomplete. It’s true that when dyeing with high-tannin dyes your project wouldn’t require a mordant, I still prefer using one. Because I'm dyeing with silk, I am using a common alum mordant. To be clear, tannins will create an effective bond to the fiber, especially to wool, but to achieve a stronger saturated color, I prefer to use both mordant and, in this case tannic, dye. In...
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Nui Shibori

Shibori is  one of my favorite practices, and there is no limit to the depth and design that it adds to textiles. Simply defined, shibori is the Japanese word for art of resist dyeing. There are many different types of shibori such as Nui (stitching), Kanoko (binding), Kumo (folding), and Arashi (wrapping). I’m in love with its element of wabi sabi- the acceptance of transience and imperfection, and that no matter how long one studies and practices the artform, no two pieces will ever come out exactly the same. In this article, I will be showcasing a piece I made using nui (stitched) shibori that I dyed using yellow onion skins, and modified with cream of tartar.
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Eco Dyeing with Kitchen Extras: Natural Dyeing at Home

Due to the current shelter-in-place rules, I’ve had to get creative with dyeing out of my home. Since I’m using dyes in my home cooking pots, it’s imperative that I am working with supplies that are food safe. Luckily there are a ton of natural dyes and modifiers that are easily found in my kitchen! In this project, I am using red onion skins, turmeric, used coffee grinds, and pericón flowers as my dyes, and cream of tartar as my modifier to make a gorgeous eco-dyed silk scarf.
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