Video From LIVE FEEDBACK FRIDAY: Madder Experiments w/Jamie Bourgeois & Madeleine McGarrity

This week, we’ve got video from our live FEEDBACK FRIDAY featuring Jamie Bourgeois & Madeleine McGarrity talking madder and water quality.

This particular FEEDBACK FRIDAY puts a spotlight on our community and the work they are doing regarding pollution and water quality.

Watch the video recording here:

The discussion focused on the duos investigations into water quality using natural dye processes. Both have used madder from Rubia tinctorum to better understand the composition of a selection of water sources. Jamie concentrates on the possible presence of toxic contaminants taken from Louisiana’s Cancer Alley, a 150-mile stretch of the Mississippi River infamous for both pollution levels and cancer rates.

Madeleine focuses on the impact of water composition on print quality and clarity, seeking to isolate an optimal source of water to be used in a circular system of printing textile yardage with natural dyes. Water composition is widely understood to have a huge impact on the outcome of natural dye baths—just as much as heat or additives. Madder itself is notable for its impressive quantity of unique dye compounds, which can be chemically encouraged or discouraged, presenting as an excellent tool for pseudo-scientific water studies like these. And the results are not always what you’d expect!

Follow Jamie on Instagram here.

Follow Madeleine on Instagram here.

Here are some resources from the talk:

Jamie’s articles on her “Water Madders” tests

EPA Toxics Release Inventory

Louisiana Bucket Brigade

LBB on Facebook and  on Instagram

RISE St. James on Facebook

Stop Formosa Plastics

Stop Formosa petition

Next week…A Verb For Keeping Warm owner/founders Kristine Vejar and Adrienne Rodriguez!

Kristine Vejar and Adrienne Rodriguez own A Verb for Keeping Warm in Oakland, California, a natural dyeing studio and retail textile shop founded in 2007. They love to meet people from around the world who share a love for textiles. They also love to teach people how to use natural dyes. Kristine is the author of The Modern Natural Dyer (Abrams 2015). They have a new book coming out this fall, titled Journeys in Natural Dyeing (Abrams October 2020) which is an international study of natural dyeing aimed at teaching beautiful techniques.

RSVP for FEEDBACK FRIDAY with A Verb For Keeping Warm HERE.


If you are not familiar with FEEDBACK FRIDAY, every week, we speak with dyers, artists, scientists and scholars about our favorite topic, natural dyeing and color. Curated by Amy DuFault, Botanical Colors’ Sustainability and Social Media Director and presented by Botanical Colors’ Founder  Kathy Hattori.