Organic Indigo – (Indigofera tinctoria)
Organic Indigo is a powder from the leaves of the indigo plant called Indigofera tinctoria. It is one of the oldest dyes known to humankind. It is also the only natural blue. Its colorant is present in other plants including woad (Isatis tinctoria) and Japanese indigo (Persicaria tinctoria), a buckwheat. Additionally, it is present in Strobilanthes cusia, a distant cousin to the ornamental Persian Shield that you can buy at Home Depot.
Indigo was used to dye shrouds for Egyptian burials, uniforms for Napoleon’s Army and has also been used to dye prestige cloth for African chiefs and denim for blue jeans. The color was synthesized around 1880 by Johann Friedrich Wilhelm Adolf von Baeyer. Shortly after, the world indigo market collapsed as manufacturers switched to the new miracle synthetic dye. Soon after, cultivation acreage plummeted and within 20 years, only a fraction of the indigo used worldwide was from natural sources.
Our organic indigo extract is Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certified. It is finely powdered. It yields a very rich and dark blue. Our indigo is 45-48% indigotin which is 2 to 3 times stronger than other indigo on the market. Therefore you will produce deep colors with fewer dips. In addition, the indigo is very pure and potent. Only small producers grow and harvest this indigo. Each purchase of this indigo helps support small scale agriculture.
Check out our blog post on how to create a natural indigo vat using fructose powder (fruit sugar) and slaked lime (calcium hydroxide). This is particularly useful for those who wish to make an indigo vat without strong chemicals.
- 50 grams of Indigo extract will dye about 900 grams of fiber (2 pounds) to a dark shade