Friday, July 25, 2014

a holiday with friends and flowers

I spent a few days with dear friends, gathering plants for dyeing and making herbal tea and infusions, walking in meadows and crossing streams, picking fruit and making jam all the while cooking delicious grilled veggie dishes.

little snail-pal, enjoying the moss after rain

we stumbled upon this beautiful little stream

crossing the makeshift "bridge" the wide flower-filled meadow opened up before us

meadow sage /salvia pratensis/

goldenrod /solidago canadensis/



we tied up the bounty into bunches, then hung them up to dry

walnut leaves, St John's Wort, goldenrods, elderberries, yarrow

bunches drying in the early morning sunshine

fruit harvest: pears, plums, elderberries and apricots, topped off with a little lavender

we made jams in 3 flavours: cinnamon & chocolate plum, lavender infused apricot, and elderberry-pear and then dressed up the jars with hand-painted labels, rustic string and mini paper doilies




Friday, July 4, 2014

indigo - here we go!

I've been looking forward to dyeing with natural indigo for a long-long time, but I've been putting it off because it is unlike all other dye-plants. It is an ancient an unique source of colour that works through an elaborate process of oxidation, reacting to the air to bring out the beautiful blue shades.
now finally the blues are here, and I'm thrilled with the first results of my dye experiments.

me, not noticing that there was a hole in the gloves I used while dyeing with indigo

cotton gauze scarf, oxidising after removal from the dye vat

oxidation, phase 1.

oxidation, phase 2.

oxidation, phase 3 - the blues are all here!


blues, and more blues!

indigo on 20 different fabric swatches

Thursday, June 26, 2014

photoshoot props

lovely findsfrom the recent dye plant walk took centre stage today at a BOTANIKA photoshoot for the Budapest Design Week catalogue - can't wait to tell you more!





Tuesday, June 24, 2014

dye plant walk

we went for a dye plant walk yesterday on the outskirts of Budapest, and identified over 15 beautiful natural dye-sources, including St John's wort and Viper's Bugloss as well as some more common varieties such as walnut, elder and wild cherry.


 
St. John's Wort

Viper's Bugloss