Kitchen Dye Workshop:
You’ve probably noticed the past couple of months that I’ve taken an interest in creating a dyeing garden. I am a complete novice in this subject, so I wanted to see how it was done properly before embarking head-on with my new found interest. This weekend I attended an online Kitchen Dye workshop with the lovely Ceilidh, from the French based BillyNou.
This was Ceilidh’s first live workshop, and it was all online allowing fellow dyers to attend from all around the world including one lady in California where it was 6am – that’s dedication for you!
The workshop was billed as a “kitchen dye along” workshop and about half the attendees did. The materials being used for the dye bath were avocado skins and pits, onion skins and red cabbage. Although a little nervous to start with, Ceilidh soon found her happy place and got into her stride.
Whilst the dye bath was simmering we discussed everything you need to know about dyeing. We covered cleaning and storing plant material, the different types of fabrics, how to clean and prepare the fabric ready to dye, mordants and the effects on the fabric. And the importance of weighing your fabric and taking notes on what you use as you dye so you can replicate it again at a later date. Needless to say I have a couple of pages of notes to keep me on track!
Ceilidh also demonstrated bundle dyeing using dried flowers and onion skins sprinkled with freshly grated tumeric and lemon juice; steaming the bundle is used to extract the dye.
We then spent some time discussing after care and preserving the longevity of the dyed fabrics. This was rounded off with a brilliant Q&A session, which only ended when we ran out of questions!
And, I’m happy to say that the Kitchen Dye Workshop didn’t disappoint one bit!
Ceilidh’s passion and enthusiasm for the subject was infectious. It was obvious that she very knowledgeable about her subject and loved what she was doing. I must admit I was a little surprised at how many were following along, which was great to see; and seeing their results in real time too was an added bonus.
So, whilst I wait for my seeds to start growing , I can start my dyeing journey using things found in the kitchen!
And should Ceilidh run a follow-up course – I’ll be first in the queue.
(Dyers Seeds Bundle will be in the store soon)