MEDICINAL DYEING AT MAKERS MESS

Since we fell in love with our bundle dyeing class at Makers Mess at the end of the year, we decided to immediately sign up for The Dogwood Dyer's medicinal dyeing class!  This class was so informative and since we had already taken one class and have been practicing a lot with natural dyes the language started to make a lot more sense this time.  

 The above bundle is all different natural fibers dyed with hibiscus, eucalyptus, and turmeric.

The above bundle is all different natural fibers dyed with hibiscus, eucalyptus, and turmeric.

As always, we started with all natural fabric strips of cotton and silk that had been pre-scoured by Liz (The Dogwood Dyer) prior to class since the scouring process takes 1-2 days of soaking.  

Since this class was focused on medicinal dyeing properties, we created the below 3 dye baths:

1.  Hibiscus - can be used for its anti-inflammatory properties as well as for your immune and digestive system.  It is also known to lower cholesterol and blood pressure as well as it can slow down the growth of tumors. 

2.  Eucalyptus - people have been using eucalyptus for many different medicinal properties over the years.  Some of the most popular usages are as a pain reliever, insect repellant, and it can also boost your immune system.

3.  Turmeric - this is used as an anti-inflammatory in medicine and these properties can transfer from the fabric through your skin into your body.

 This is a page from The Dogwood Dyer's Swatch Book

This is a page from The Dogwood Dyer's Swatch Book

Each dye bath was prepared separately on a burner with dried plants of the above listed items.  We were then given small wooden circles, triangles, and squares to create designs and patterns with folding the fabrics around each item.  This is a Shibori dyeing technique and it always yields beautiful results.

 Results from the medicinal block dyeing.  Hibiscus, eucalyptus, and turmeric.

Results from the medicinal block dyeing.  Hibiscus, eucalyptus, and turmeric.

Opening up our knowledge to natural dyes and their medicinal properties feels like there is hope left in the fashion industry.  We all need to raise awareness about the harmful chemicals that are created with synthetic dyes and fibers.  Our new line of upcycled tees create zero chemicals and zero waste.  Our shirts have a story and you have the voice!