Coffee and onion skins

I love indigo (in case you hadn’t noticed!) ;-). But recently I’ve been reading a lot about other natural dyes, including eco printing. So I thought I’d have a go.

My first attempt at eco printing was not a roaring success, based as it was on pulling together various techniques I’d gleaned from scouring the internet. (Since then, a more detailed tutorial has been published by Terriea Kwong at The Felting and Fibre Studio.)

I soaked a silk scarf in vinegar, put some rose and geranium leaves on top, rolled it up and tied it, steamed it for an hour, then left it in a glass jar in the sun for three days. The result was some very faint leaf prints, though a few were a bit stronger.

ecoprint1 ecoprint2

dyebookThen I came across Dyes from Kitchen Produce by Setsuko Ishii in a discount bookshop, illustrated with line drawings in that beautifully simple Japanese style.

So I went back to trying shibori techniques with a couple of different dyes.


First coffee:

coffee scarf1 coffee scarf2

Then onion skins:

onion scarf1 onion scarf2

I think there are some promising colours here. ESP fears I will be raiding the freezer for his stores of soft fruit next!

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8 thoughts on “Coffee and onion skins”

  1. Thanks Kim – I have been experimenting with eco prints lately as well. It is spring here in Australia so I have been using different fallen flower heads plus red onion skins and eucalyptus leaves. Results have been varied but I enjoy the experimentation. Onion skins are a great source for colour.

  2. The onion skins turned out great 🙂 I’ve been saving red onion skins for a year or so to try one day. I used turmeric a few weeks ago trying to get a creamy colour for sewing thread, it was bright yellow after one quick dip in!

    1. They did, didn’t they? It will be interesting to see what colour red onion skins produce.

      Must also try turmeric. I’ve unintentionally dyed so many of my clothes over the years after spilling curry on them! 😉

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