With high drama and absolute decadence, the cow parsley ushers in the Summer Solstice, when the earth is at its closet point to the sun and every living thing on the face of the earth is soaked in light. It reminds us to rejoice and celebrate light. For natural dyers, the long days are for work, planning and preparing for the year ahead because once the heady show is over, so is our source of colour.
Autumn foraging in a forest of roses. Sarah Cuttle Photography It was a few years ago that I discovered the fragile beauty of blush pink dyes that come from rose hips. Though dyeing with roses is a particularly slow process, taking days to extract the dye, there is nothing else that is as pleasurable in the making because the studio fills with the sweet sugary fragrance, triggering memories and expectations in the way scents are known to do. Foraged rose hips The first job as with all foraged dye stuff is to lay everything out in the open for a...
Foraging for Dye Plants in Winter and Living Sustainably Throughout the Year: A Look at the Alder Tree
Despite the apparent bleakness, winter is a treasure-trove of natural dyes which we forage and store in the Juniper & Bliss studio for use throughout the year. We make naturally dyed sustainable pieces for eco friendly homes and slow living spaces. Today I want to explore the wonderful properties of the alder tree (Alnus glutinosa). The flowers that turn into small woody cone-like fruits, the double serrated leaves and the dark, fissured bark often mottled with lichen are staples in our larder.
Alder trees against a clear winter sky
As More of us are signing up to the benefits of slow living we are confronted with a myriad of issues and complexities when coming to make simple decisions.
The door to the world of Betty de Paris opens with the quickening of the heart as the visitor feels for a gap in the intense blues that hide the treasures inside! Once inside the flagstone interior of the one time carpentry and joinery atelier, we are overwhelmed. The eye adjusts to a soft and new kind of light filtering through multiple mottled glass windows. But almost immediately we are stunned by the riot of blues, from the palest aqua to the deepest lazuli off set by whites and corals! We know we are in a very exciting and special...
Avocado Dye Baby Blanket Baby Shower Daffodils Dahlias Eco-friendly Ethically Made Foraging Hand Knitted Hand Made Natural Dye New Born Baby Gift Organic Small Batch Production Sustainable Living Woollen Blanket