Late last year, botanical tie dye artist, and teacher, Abi Fincham invited us to her workshop in the Northern Rivers of NSW, Australia, to try our hands at naturally tie dying silk with organic dyes. And what an enlightening afternoon it was! From learning the sustainable dyeing arts to understanding the fundamental properties of unique botanical dyes, Abi walked Katie Kolodinski, Silk Laundry Founder, through the process of naturally dyeing silk.
THE SILK DYE EXPERIENCE
WITH KATIE KOLODINSKI
Not only is botanical dyeing a therapeutic, meditative process that teaches surrender and patience, the items crafted are unique in every way. Just like humans, no two creations are the same. So whether you're dyeing a shirt, a bag, a dress or a robe, the experience is one that will truly mesmerise.
WORDS BY KATIE KOLODINSKI
The whole thing with experimenting with natural tie dyeing is that it's about increasing the longevity of your clothes and giving them new life. Say, if you're bored with an old piece or it's discolored over time, or if you just want to create something original. The potential is endless.
Tie dye is something that just waves in and out of popularity. Kind of like a leopard print, it seems to never really be out of fashion. It waves in and out as it pleases.
In my early 20's I loved to tie dye. And recently, I've started tie dyeing family gifts for Christmas as I thought it was a fun way to personalize things and create something unique on a budget.
And I do think it is just that: something personal. A hippie at heart, my dad has been a huge fan of tie-dye since the late 60's. So whenever I see tie-dye I think of him. It adds to my love for the art.
I think botanical dying is a whole new level of beauty. It's free of chemicals and you can work with beautiful plants, flowers, and food waste you already have (ie dried onion skins, and flower petals from that old bunch of flowers). A way to renew some aged garments and be creatively free and in the moment.
My experience botanical dyeing with Abi was lovely.