Natural dyes

I want my outcome to be coloured naturally by plants, so I did a small test using steeped tea and the juice from a jar of pickled beetroots to dye fabric. I left the pieces of fabric in the liquids for 4 hours and then left them to air dry overnight. I am surprised at how well the colour has taken to both samples and the vibrancy of the purple created by the beetroot juice. I also like how the beetroot stained fabric isn’t evenly stained, so it looks slightly tie-dyed and adds depth to the sample. I like the tea sample as it is very even and automatically give the fabric an aged, rough look. Next time I might use coffee instead of tea to see if the outcome is a darker, richer brown.

So many plants can be used to dye fabric, and there is a big range of colours. You can also dilute the colours to create an even bigger spectrum, like the picture above shows. I think natural dyes in my piece would be a great way to make my outcome as linked to the natural world as possible. I believe natural dyes are a much more planet-friendly way of colouring fabric instead of using synthetic dyes and I want my piece to be as eco-conscious as possible.

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