WORKSHOP The Greener Indigo

by - Monday, April 23, 2012

The Greener Indigo
Barbara Shapiro

$295 (includes $75 lab fee) class limit 16
October 17-19 (Wed-Fri) 10am–4pm
Maiwa East, 1310 Odlum Drive, Vancouver, Canada

This workshop presents an ecologically sound, non-toxic way to work with indigo. It is not about how to get the famous blue dye to yield the colour green!

Discover the magic and delve into the mystery of indigo, one of the oldest and most influential dyes. Participants will set up an indigo dye bath using a simple ecological formula suitable for studio use. Barbara will introduce basic indigo dyeing procedures and resist techniques. Students will prepare cloth for dyeing and experiment in resist dyeing and printing (or painting) with thickened indigo. By the end of the workshop, students will have a set of dyed and printed indigo samples, several sustainable-indigo-dyed objects, and the knowledge to use this magic dye with a “green” formula suitable for the home studio. Alternate recipes will be discussed.

The class will introduce students to the historical, economic, and cultural significance of indigo’s long history, from its beginnings in India and the ancient world to the role it played in the spice trade and on the Silk Road.

Suitable for all levels of experience.


Barbara Shapiro has been creating textile art for decades. She combines a rich knowledge of historical and ethnic textiles with broad technical experience in weaving, dyeing, and basketry. After being involved in the San Francisco Art to Wear movement in the ’70s and ’80s, Barbara shifted her focus to textile art. She teaches frequent workshops and classes at San Francisco State University. A board member of the Textile Society of America, she also serves on the Textile Arts Council of the Fine Arts Museums of San Franscisco and is a docent at the Museum of Craft and Folk Art. For many years she has specialized in indigo dyeing and has taught many students the “Greener Indigo” formula that is safer and more ecological than common chemical formulas. She is a frequent contributor to textile publications, and her wall pieces and baskets have been widely exhibited throughout the USA and in Canada, France, England, Ireland, Japan, and Israel.

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