Eco Prints Late September 2011

LichGerRosSsk_ecoprint6LichGerRosSsk_ecoprint5Euc.ecoprint1Euc_BSoda_ecoprint2Eucalyptus, purple basil and marigold, alum mordant. Sumac leaves and berries with ammonia modifier, alum mordant.
Golden Rod, whole plant, alum mordant

Eco Prints Late September 2011, a set on Flickr – member of the Botanical Alchemy Group

The first two pics show my latest eco prints on lichen dyed silk, followed by  some faves of the summer.

The lichen (forest floor refuse) is probably lobaria pulmonaria and gave a bronze colour after immersion dyeing a silk panel. Layers of other steamed eco prints followed: perennial geranium leaf, rose leaf, purple sandcherry leaf and Saskatoon berry leaf (a relative of the Serviceberry, amelanchier family), I am intrigued by the various and dark greens that emerged, as if an iron modifier had been applied. Early in the season, say June or July, geranium, for example, gives bright yellow-green. There are pale turquoise leaf resist patterns as well as both light and dark prints of the Saskatoon berry leaf.

The three eco prints following show eucalyptus – from the florist, alas – printing yellow greens (with alum), dark browns, blue-blacks (with alum and iron) and pinks (with alum, sandcherry, purple basil and marigold) …then in the last two we have a vintage linen printed with sumac berries for dark reddish pinks, mordanted with alum and sumac leaves (giving an incidental greenish yellow) and modified to turquoise here and there with splashes of ammonia. Vinateg linen takes eco printing and dyeing well because of much laundering in its history, thus the fibres are well scoured and prepared to receive colours.

The last print shown comes from a whole plant of Golden Rod bundled in alum mordanted silk and steamed. I love the long pointy green leaf prints.

I am now a member of the Botanical Alchemy group on Flickr. Members there report on their eco dyeing and printing  first learned from India Flint (see side bar links), an Australian artist and writer.

About wendyfe

I am a fibre artist working in mixed media textiles with a focus on vintage cloth reworked with stitching, natural dyeing, eco printing and rust printing . My work can be seen at
This entry was posted in Eco Prints, Natural Dyeing, Uncategorized, Vintage Textiles and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Eco Prints Late September 2011

  1. i love your blog! it is a wealth of information. I am curious to know if you have ever done much with dying on paper, as opposed to textiles.



    • wendyfe says:

      Thanks Andrea! Funny you should ask about dyeing on paper! That is my next exploration. India Flint (see my Blogroll) did a workshop in Toronto last year and the class did eco prints on paper, I gather. I did not attend but it is written up online (Google ..I do not have the link, sorry..) I saw somewhere that it is possible to stack watercolour (AKA cotton rag) or other papers with the plant materials in between the layers then steam that lot to get prints…Presumably one has to mordant the paper first with alum at least, and possibly tannin. TBD! Let me know if you have any fun with that and check back here because I plan to report. Thanks to all the artists who have shared their eco print experiences with such generosity so that we can try stuff too! I wll try to post the appropriate links here when I dig them out.

    • wendyfe says:

      Hi Andrea

      FYI: Re your question about eco prints on paper: I have reported on my first experiments with eco prints with fall leaves on watercolour paper in a recent post (October 2011) on my blog. . After printing I tried modifying the results by dropping iron liquor, copper liquor, vinegar and ammonia on to selected areas. Will be doing some more prints soon. If you like, share your own results!




    • wendyfe says:

      Hi Andrea

      Yes, lots of prints on paper. I have written quite a bit on that under the tsg “eco prints on paper”

      Hsve a go! Maybe you csn share your results


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