Episode #2: Grow Your Own Natural Dyes

Last October, I had the opportunity to learn about shibori dyeing with indigo at the Textile Arts Center in Manhattan. The experience made me curious about working with other natural dyes, so I headed over to chat with Isa Rodrigues (in the picture up top), studio manager at the Textile Arts Center in Brooklyn, who started a natural dye garden and CSA this past summer. In this second episode of Thread Cult, Isa and I delve into the botanical wonderland that one can grow, scavenge, and find lurking in your pantry.

I meant to post this episode last week, but technical difficulties south of the border (more on that later) kept me from doing so.

Below are a few pictures of the Textile Arts Center in the Gowanus neighborhood of Brooklyn. It’s kind of a textile geek’s paradise. I wanted to live there. For you last minute holiday shoppers, check out the Textile Arts Center’s online shop. They’ve got some beautiful handmade items, as well as supplies.

Hope you enjoy!

Episode #2: Grow Your Own Natural Dyes

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Looms in the Textile Arts Center

Dried plants for natural dyeing.

Natural dye swatches

Weaving in process

Highlights from Episode #2:

The Textile Arts Center

Sewing Seeds Project [Isa is still working on the online resource list for this, I will post the link when it’s up!]

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Feedback Farms 

596 Acres






Purple basil

Japanese Indigo




Golden Fennel


Madder root

Plum tree branches

Turkish rugs

Aluminium salt


Onion skins

Sasha Duerr

The Handbook of Natural Plant Dyes: Personalize Your Craft with Organic Colors from Acorns, Blackberries, Coffee, and other Everyday Ingredients, by Sasha Duerr

Permacouture Institute

Black walnut tree


Rhubarb leaves


  1. Pingback: my first natural dyeing attempts | My Grandmothers' Legacy

  2. Pingback: Sounds of the Week: October 12 | Patchquirk Crafts

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