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Eco Colour: Botanical Dyes for Beautiful Textiles Hardcover – September 14, 2010
Frequently Bought Together
"If you've ever worried about the effect dyeing fabric has on the earth, Eco Colour by India Flint will teach you how to use botanical dyes to create beautiful textiles." - Cutoutandkeep.net
"A beautifully presented book...if you are interested in botanical dyes, this is a definite must read." - Shuttle, Spindle & Dyepot
"Slow dyes, like slow foods, require time and effort, but can generate extraordinary results. This book follows that same philosophy. If you take the time to delve deeply and absorb the wealth of information offered, you will find instruction and inspiration in abundance." - Surface Design Journal
"This book is a significant and inspirational addition to the literature on natural dyeing and one which must be read by anyone interested in the topic." - Pam Borchardt, member of the Natural Dye Group, Plant Craft Cottage
Top Customer Reviews
Usually satisfied with more abstract instruction, I went ahead and ordered it -- expecting still to find outlines of generic procedures, some suggested effective combinations of mordants and plant materials, and a bit of orientation for those of us whose prior dying experience has been limited to commercial synthetic dyes on the stovetop.
Be warned: What little this book offers in the way of instruction is buried in long, wool-gathering reflections and chatty anecdotes. If you can discern a complete process, you will have extracted it by flipping around scanning for hints, in rambling text nearly free of useful rubrics other than chapter headings. It may please you to know, from an amusing sidebar, that the ancient Scots considered little boys' urine ideal for dying with one particular material (woad). But I, for one, would like to know for any of the mordants: how much, for how long, in approximately what dilution, for what fiber types, and when in the process?
No-one is born knowing this stuff; we buy books in hopes of learning it. India's work is inspiring to look at and her beautiful book would grace an artsy coffee table, but her prose misses the tutorial mark pretty badly.
I ended up taking India Flints week long workshop, which she promotes and teaches all over the World, after attempting, with some good results, a DIY approach for quite some time.
Let me tell you, if this book wets your appetite and you want a hands on experience with Ms. Flint...you may be in for an expensive retreat considering lodging, meals, travel expenses, etc... She stretches the week out as best she can with hours spent on gathering local windfall, time chatting up her Eco spiritual approach, a half day was spent learning to stitch personal initials into fabric while she recited her poetry in the background, and then... she barely reveals the dynamics of the process at hand, her secrets of the technique are not revealed only basics are covered. At the end of the five days I was exhausted from straining to hear her, because after numerous request from different students to speak up, she quite literately refused! Also, the results of the class were less than striking and quite dull in appearance...nothing as vibrant and defined as the work she has accomplished and published in her books and on her media sites.
In my opinion India Flint is a businesswoman first, and she wants to milk her expertise for as long as she can before her competition spreads the nuts and bolts of this alluring and beautiful surface design technique. Buy the book if you want to get the gist of Eco printing. But if you are a serious fiber artist and textile designer Irit Dulman is the Eco dyer to follow!Read more ›
The main drawback is that the book's organization is awkward, requiring much study and flipping around to figure out how best to use the botanicals at your disposal. To be fair, much of the information is complicated, making it hard to organize; and there is a good index to help you find that stray sentence you need. If you are willing to plow through and experiment, Eco Colour is a great foundation and inspiration. There are actually a couple "recipes" for quick and easy eco-prints, but patience is still required (the author advises waiting a week to open that lovely bundle of now-rosy silk I tinted with red onion skins!) When you try the flower pounding, please do take the author's advice to make a trial, even if you have limited plant material to work with! :-)
One thing the reader should not miss is that the author admitted drawing during chemistry class! She mentions early in the book the reliable color results that can be obtained using certain chemicals, without the specific caution that these are quite toxic, cautions she does, however, repeat concerning plants that are poisonous, etc. (Please be sure to look up an MSDS if you are tempted to order any chrome salts, etc.)
One of the most helpful things to me was the extensive information on the friendlier mordants, which ones are useful on which types of fiber, and how various ones may affect the final colors you will achieve. We benefit also from little tricks she has learned, such as freezing certain flowers or berries to extract the most color. (Spent blossoms are in the freezer now and will be my next project.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I really like the book, wish was a little more informative about the techniques been use on the bookPublished 5 days ago by Jorge Camra
Such a beautiful book. Makes me wish I could visit the artist.Published 5 months ago by Addicted to books
India Flint is the guru of natural dyeing, as far as I'm concerned! I've purchased several books on the topic, and this, to me, is the #1 sourcebook. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Marlene
Love this book .. So much information that i can find anywhere else.Published 7 months ago by suzanne hammer