Dye plants: bldye

I haven’t tried most of these, but have heard that they produce colour. If you have had success with any of these dyes please let us know by posting a message to our Facebook Group


Strawberry Blight

Latin: Chenopodium capitatum

Low lying plant with leaves spaced far apart. Where the leaf joins the stem is a cluster of bright red fruit. Use the juice of the berries for a pink/purple. Try vinegar to set the dye, or an alum mordant.


Scrub the peels clean. Add to bath of vinegar and cream of tartar. Rosey gold. Add premordanted wool (alum)
Also try avocado pits.

Avocado Pit Dye Vat
Dyeing with Avocado Peels and Pits

Purple Cabbage


Alum – yellow, beige

Ammonia – pale green

Tin – lavender

Vinegar – pink, lilac

Afterbath: add washing soda dissolved in boiling water


Red Cabbabe Socks

Black Birch

Simmer birch bark in dye bath. Add mordanted wool. Simmer.
Colour: pinkish beige

Colors and Dyes in Early Russia

Hollyhock berries

Colour: pale yellow.
(or sometimes blue!)

Hollyhock: Greenish side of Blue
Coreopsis Tinctoria

Use 1 1/2 cups of flowers per dye bath.


alum – antique pine

iron – dark brown

copper – chestnut brown

tin – gold

Delphinium Blossoms

Colour: sage green

Horseradish leaves

Geranium Leaves

Simmer with rusty nails or in an iron pot.
Colour: dark grey

Willow bark

Colour: Coffee cream Choke cherry

Colour: pink
Dyeing with Willow Bark

More Natural Dyes

Osage Orange

Wild Color, Revised and Updated Edition: The Complete Guide to Making and Using Natural Dyes
This comprehensive book outlines all the necessary equipment, how to select fibers and plant parts, choose the right methods for mordanting and dyeing, test color modifiers and the fastness of dyed colors, and obtain a range of gorgeous colors from every plant, from alter to woad, shown in more than 250 swatches.
UK: Wild Color

The Dyer’s Garden
This comprehensive guide walks readers through a garden season from design to planting to harvesting for the dyepot.
UK: Dyer’s Garden

The Handbook of Natural Plant Dyes: Personalize Your Craft with Organic Colors from Acorns, Blackberries, Coffee, and Other Everyday Ingredients
This book covers the basics of equipment and safety measures, shares recipes using everything from sour grass to olive leaves, offers instructions for keeping a recipe and swatch book, and lists lots of projects, including tablecloths, scarves, and beads.
UK: Handbook of Natural Plant Dyes

Natural Dyes – EBay Watch


Ebay Finds

Soda Ash for Fiber Reactive Dyes - 1 Pound - Current price: $14.15

Chestnut Extract 8oz - Current price: $9.95

Chestnut Extract 2oz - Current price: $2.80

Chestnut Extract 4oz - Current price: $5.20

Chestnut Extract 1oz - Current price: $1.65

Soda Ash - 1 Pound - Current price: $9.47