Handmaker's Factory

Workshop Recap - Indigo Dyeing & Freeform Patchwork

Indigo dyeing has had quite the resurgence recently, which is fantastic! It's a wonderful way to colour fabric and yarn with varying shades of blue and has a history that goes back to the Greeks and Romans. 

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The preparation of the dye bath is somewhat different to your regular natural dyes. There is a science to the preparation that takes time and knowledge. Thankfully we had Jules to show us how to prepare and use an indigo dye bath.

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Jules taught us the variations of indigo dyeing in different parts of the world and what plants are used.  We were then talked through the step by step process of heating the dye bath and how to remove the oxygen and the science behind why this is necessary.

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It was amazing to see how the fabrics and yarns changed from green to blue as they were exposed to the oxygen in the air.

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We left with the understanding of how to recreate our own indigo dye baths at home and some swatched of the various yarns and fabrics we tested.

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We are looking into organising a fermented indigo bath in the near future, if you think this might be something you'd be interested attending we'd love to hear from you. Leave a comment or email us.

Later that same day we had a freeform patchwork class with Leslie from Maze & Vale. She taught us that patchwork doesn't need to be precise and showed us how to deconstruct the rules of traditional patchwork and easy, carefree ways to combine pieces of cloth into one-of-a-kind works of art.

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Leslie brought in an array of her own freeform quilt for inspiration.

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And her scrap baskets were ripe for picking!

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It was wonderful to see how each student worked with the fabrics and the choices they made.

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