You Asked, Kathy Answered: Oak Tannins On Cotton

We get lots of emails from customers about challenges with dyeing and needing Botanical Colors’ President Kathy Hattori’s help. Why not share the learning so we can all benefit? From our inboxes to you, it’s simple: You Asked, Kathy Answered. Email questions@botanicalcolors with your plea for help! YOU ASKED: I am curious about some results I’ve been having using oak as my tannin bath for cotton fibers. As far as my experimentation goes I first tried freshly fallen oak leaf— still green, as a pre-mordant tannin bath at around 50% WoF. I found the fibers turned a dark purple color, … Read more

10 Tannins That Don’t Need a Mordant

There are so many mordant variations and we urge you to experiment and find the one that works best for you. If you’re not familiar with the term, mordanting is the most important process of preparing fibers to accept color. Mordanting prepares fibers to bond with natural dyes and is typically a separate immersion bath for the fibers. Many natural dyes require the use of a mordant to achieve the most durable and long lasting colors. Though you might start with the tried and true aluminum mordants, consider trying tannin-rich extracts that not only offer a base color, they prep … Read more

Video From LIVE FEEDBACK FRIDAY: Dyes of the Américas

This week’s FEEDBACK FRIDAY was with Botanical Colors’ President Kathy Hattori who talked about and demoed Dyes of the Américas. We went through some native colors from North, Central and South America that are included in our new dye kit, Dyes of the Américas, as well as some locally grown specialties from our network of dye growers. Watch the video recording here: We’ve been working with some of the culturally significant and historical dyes that are native to the Americas. Many of these colors date back to ancient indigenous people, some used as early as the second century BC by … Read more

Madison Wool and Wildwood Farm Host a Natural Dye Weekend

We had so much fun this past weekend in Madison, Connecticut at Madison Wool and Wildwood Farm’s natural dye weekend! Participants had their own personal natural dye journeys using both the classical, historical dyes and some surprising new ones (think walnut sludge and pokeberries).  We also worked with some of Botanical  Colors’ ancient raw dyestuffs such as cochineal, madder roots, walnut hulls and weld flowers. The group also learned about the secrets to obtaining the best color through chopping, simmering and carefully extracting natural dye tinctures.  As an added bonus, we took a step outdoors to gather dyestuffs from the … Read more