Natural dye fades. Yes it does. Celebrate it.
The expectation of 100% guarantee in our modern world has far reaching ramifications silently building in the background of our lives. That nothing is permanent or perfect is a breathtaking and empowering realisation. The best way to describe pigment fading is that it is the exquisite journey of natural dye. It is not a blatant fade as with chemical dyes. Instead it goes on a slow journey - breaking down the hues and shades that nature has built with her pigments. The wonderful thing not many realise is that if mordanted correctly at the beginning of the dyeing process the garment can be re-dyed multiple times over its lifetime without having to re-mordant.
Here are some tips on how to reduce this happening:
•Launder with a neutral PH detergent, or as close to neutral as possible
•Rinse clothing thoroughly after washing to remove any excess detergent
•Never hang item to dry in direct sunlight, dry in shade
•Clothing really doesn’t need washing after each wear. After wearing if given a good shake and hung up it will be fine for quite a few wears. Often hanging out on a hanger in the shade can be enough to freshen your garment. •Definitely no bleach, wool wash or stain remover please!
•It is advisable to wash separately for the first couple of washes just in case there is a colour run off. When we wash items we wash until a clear water run off occurs but occasionally residual colour can run in first washes.
•Avoid soaking in water for long period of time
Protein fibres use alum mordant at 15% WOF.
Cellulose fibres pre mordant with tannin at 8% WOF then mordant with alum acetate for best results at 8% WOF or if not available 15% of alum WOF.
Alkanet needs to be soaked for several days prior to making dye bath to allow full extraction of colour. Soak your Alkanet in alcohol or methylated spirits, when this liquid has developed a strong colour over several days add enough water to create your dye vat and enough water for fibres to move freely. This extraction process will allow the violets and purple pigments to develop that are not soluble in water.
Use 70 - 100% WOF for rich colours, 30% will give a nice medium colour. Heat Alkanet vats slowly and no higher than 60 degrees. Due to the extraction it is best to exhaust this vat in one session.
Alkanet has moderate light fastness so choose application and projects wisely!
Please view our Natural Dyes Instruction Guide for more information.
Online purchases made on FabricofHumanity.com over $150 will receive free shipping within Australia. Shipping on purchases under $150 will be calculated o weight and will be calculated at cart checkout. International purchases will be charged on weight and destination and will be calculated at cart checkout. We ship using Australia Post and Sendle as trusted national and international shipping agents, who have a carbon-neutral shipping service (& Sendle is B Corp registered) and do offer tracking. International orders may be subject to taxes and duties and these costs are the responsibility of you, the customer. We recommend checking with your local authorities to understand possible charges before placing your order. It is important to note that depending on which country you are shipping to, Natural Dyes and Khadi & handloom textiles are considered to be unique to region and therefore can obtain duty free clearance in most circumstances - but still important to check locally. Parcels of international customers who decline to pay taxes and duties, will be returned to Fabric of Humanity and the order value will be refunded less the original shipping fee. If we currently do not ship to your country please let us know by sending us an email to email@example.com.
Fabric of Humanity is a social enterprise creating sustainable employment and positive impact with natural dyes and textiles. When you make a purchase you are not just a customer. You become a custodian and take a vital place within our story.