Community Indigo Vat

Indigo is the blue dye that made a Levi Straus famous and it comes from a plant. Indigo was grown in the SE US in the early 1800s. Today there is a commercial indigo growing and processing operation in Tennessee. Many tobacco farmers have switched to growing indigo and there are smaller growers across the country.

The indigo vat is already made and you can bring a piece of cotton clothing, cloth, or linen napkins up to 5 ounces to dye, preferably white. I have organic cotton napkins, bandannas, market bags, and scarves available for purchase. If interested let us know when you sign up.

Participate in the community vat and learn more about this mysterious centuries old blue color. I may bring a vat made from indigo grown locally in Rice County.

Color Power from Plants and Flowers

The students will learn about plant color and chemistry and several methods for applying color to paper and fabric. Add a little bit of lemon juice or soap and watch the color change before your eyes. We will steam leaf and flower prints onto paper, a canvas bag and a tshirt.

June 19—Paradise Center for the Arts-Faribault


Marigold Magic making dyes, inks, and paints

Marigolds bring bright yellow color to our gardens and when we dead head the flowers they just keep growing. We will simmer the flowers in water, strain and separate into three containers. One will be used for dying cloth, one for making ink and one for extracting pigment for paints. The students will go home with samples of dyed cloth, a 30ml bottle of ink that can be used with a dip or calligraphy pen and a container of marigold pigment.

July 17—Paradise Center for the Arts-Faribault


The Amazing Living Color that Surrounds us

Students will learn how to identify some local plants, flowers and food scraps that can be used for color. They will learn how the color is extracted and how fabric is prepared for dying.  Two dye pots will be prepared in class. They will take home two different colors of cotton and silk samples, two dyed cotton napkins, and a scarf.

August 7—Paradise Center for the Arts-Faribault


Inks made from Natures Gentle Colors

The students will become familiar with a basic ink-making process using easily source local materials. Two inks will be prepared in class depending on available materials. Possibilities include marigold, black walnut, avocados, or onion skins. A pop can calligraphy pen will also be made in class. These inks can be used with dip pens and brushes on paper.

July 24—Northfield Arts Guild


August 4 Digital Demo—Textile Center, Minneapolis


Finding Gold in Wood Shavings-Digital Demo

Participants will see several cloth samples dyed with different wood and they will learn how to extract colors and use them for dying natural fabrics. They will learn about fabric preparation and several applications including home décor, apparel, and quilts.

July 8 Digital Demo—Textile Center, Minneapolis

Resources and tutorials for classes

Onion Skin Dyeing
Easy Shibori Resist Technique