Dyeing is the process of adding colour to textiles such as fibre yarn or fabric. There are different types of dyes and different methods of dyeing. Natural dyes include plant and vegetable materials such as woad weld and onion skins. Some natural dyes need the fibre to be mordanted with a chemical to enable the colour to stay in the fibre and not fade.
Natural dyes can produce different colours depending on the time of the year and weather the plants have experienced. This makes natural dyeing less predictable than acid dyeing but more exciting.
Acid dyes are made from chemicals and an unlimited range of colours can be achieved with them. Acid dyed fibre and fabric is more repeatable and more colour fast than natural dyes.
The Guild enjoys dyeing workshops using all types of dyes and methods of dyeing. Dyeing can be undertaken using a microwave, a steamer, and by boiling fibres in a saucepan etc. Eco printing is popular at the moment which is a technique of pressing flowers and leaves into fabric and applying heat to it. The imprint of the flower or leaf is left on the fabric.