Sunday, December 16, 2012

Natural dye with expert 專家的天然印染

  HKDI  organised a programme for the natural dye with expert Michel Garcia from France.  He's taking us on a wondrous journey, sharing his keen insights as one of the leading natural experts in the world.
Yesterday a group of us visited Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden for the native dye plants.
有幸參與設計學院可持續發展之天然印染兩日活動, 與法國專家 Michel Garcia在嘉道理農場認識本土可印染植物及在綠田園提取顏料示範使我眼界大開, 原本對藍染不解不甚有興趣的我, 也拿取馬藍植物回家種植繼續研究. 
The farm is located in the mid hill in the New Territories in memory of Sir Kadoorie. 
We saw lots of local plants that give color. 
 With the introduction from Michel I just knew some sorts of local plants for natural dyeing. The first day was packed with some knowledge.
 The second day was interesting to do extraction of indigo dyes with a bigger group
 We picked some Strobilantes ( 馬藍) in a farm to do pigment

 Michel showed us how to test plants by pounding.  The leaves marks are bright and clear on cotton.
Making an indigo dye pot with some root powder and dye stuff in hot water

 Experiment on dyeing
 Different shades of blue 
After soaked the Strobilantes leaves in water for an hour then poured into another bucket to get some more oxygen and mixed with lime water  

 Poured into a cotton fabric to get the pigment

 With some sliced persimmon, lemon, maddar, color changed to orange on silk and purple on wool.
I've insatiable curiosity and interested to know more the mixing of indigo that gives color other than blue. 
There're some ways to get different color.  I'm very eager to plant my own Strobilantes to do more experiments. Thanks for HKDI for the activities arranged.


  1. WOW! How wonderful, terrie. Thanks for all these great pictures..very exciting..great that Michel garcia was there and that there will be so many new projects for youy out of this!!

  2. Two days of acquiring knowledge in good company - what could be better?

  3. Isn't it amazing to be in the company of someone who is a wealth of knowledge and to learn even more new things to give you more pleasure doing your craft. The only thing I have used is tea a few times to dye some miniature quilts and it was fun. I can only imagine what new things you have learned and will be showing us as time goes by.
    (((HUGS))) Susanne :)

  4. How exciting to have the wisdom of such an expert, and your own local dye plants too... thanks for your report.

  5. I love this! My mother used to use natural dyes for her wool before she wove with it. I haven't seen anyone use natural dyes since. The colors are surprisingly bright and rich. Thank you for sharing!

  6. what an exciting work shop, I have watched people do this but I have never tried, its really intresting,I hope you are well,


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