This week: Getting madder to be really red on cotton and does madder root go bad?
On Makers Row: 8 Frequently Asked Questions About Natural Colors and Dyes
(Previously published on Makers Row) What are natural dyes? Natural dyes are textile colorants that are derived from plants, insects and other natural materials. They are steeped in history, mystery and lore and each culture has its own set of prized colors, traditions and meanings. Prior to the mid-19th century, all dyes were from the natural world. Blue came from indigo, yellow from a variety of plants, including fustic, mignonette and dyers’ greenwood, red from madder roots and cochineal insects, purple from logwood and brown from walnut or cutch. These plants were gathered or harvested then chopped or crushed and … Read more