drawn to fabric - inspired by colour

by - Monday, September 19, 2011

Charllotte Kwon teaches behind a battery of dye vats.

Charllotte Kwon's natural dye workshop closed on Thursday. For some it was a life-changing experience. It was a chance to learn, not only the range of colours possible from natural sources, but also the motivation and philosophy behind all that natural dyes mean. Combine this with an historic and cross-cultural perspective, and it becomes clear why some students have tried for over six years to take this course.

Here assistant and workshop coordinator Anne Babchuk (right) leads students through labelling and sorting of finished samples. With over 120 distinct, precision-dyed colours, this is a vital step. In the natural colour family, dyes and fibres are siblings - so the course also takes students through the importance of organic fibres, the role of small producer-farmers and builds an awareness of the economics behind the clothing industry.

And, of course, the colours that were made were beautiful. It could have been the intensity of this sensual experience alone that was pivotal for so many. "I can never look at colour the same way again." was a frequent comment.

Pictures in this post are courtesy of workshop participant Sandip Sarwate. Many thanks for this insider's view of one of our most popular workshops.

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