March 03, 2022 4 min read

Eco Dyeing Courses and Workshops

Eco Dyeing with Natural Dyes

Natural dyeing, or in more modern terms Eco Dyeing, has a history going back thousands of years to the Neolithic period, (12,000 to 5,000 BC). During this time, dyeing methods have changed little. In China, there is evidence that natural dyeing with plants, insects and bark from trees was taking place over 5,000 years ago. Eco dyeing was always a process carried out by hand with no machinery involved. The process involved large vats or other containers which were used for dyeing small quantities of yarn or other fibres. All eco dyes come from natural plants, minerals and insects such as flowers, roots, vegetables, insects, minerals, wood, and molluscs.

Synthetic Dyes

The introduction of synthetic dyes began in the middle 1800's, apparently in 1857. Synthetic dyes are manufactured from chemicals and can be produced in bulk with consistent colours. Before synthetic dyes were discovered, dyestuffs were manufactured from natural products. Batches of natural dye were never exactly alike in colour. There is a beauty and depth of colour to natural dye that becomes more beautiful with age -  part of the beauty of a handmade product!

Eco Dyeing Craft Courses

Our eco dyeing courses and workshops using 100% natural dyes are a modern day hands-on learning experience but still using the same basic ingredients and processes as in times gone by. Our eco dyeing courses use ancient dyes such as Madder, Weld, and Cochineal, to name a few, in their natural form as well as extract.

Learn a craft - learn how to hand dye Protein fibres (sheep wool, yak, alpaca etc) and Cellulose fibres (cotton, linen, hemp etc) with natural dyes on our eco dyeing craft workshops in Pembrokeshire, Wales.   

These eco dyeing craft courses are a hands on learning experience using ancient dyes. You will leave with the knowledge to dye yarn and fabrics with lasting colour successfully to use in your projects at home. Located in the north Pembrokeshire countryside, our hands-on craft courses are held in a purpose designed Dye Studio. These courses are suitable for complete beginners and those that have a little experience. They are the foundation blocks of good practice for you to build and develop your own natural dye journey.

There is a beauty and depth of colour to natural dye that becomes more beautiful with age. These courses opens the door to that world of colour and you will be amazed at the colours you will be able to produce using Nature and a little knowledge! 

Felinfach Dye Studio

Our hands-on, practical eco dyeing craft workshops are held in a purpose designed Dye Studio. There is a beauty and depth of colour to natural dyes that becomes more beautiful with age. Hand dyed colours, dyed with natural dyes may be repeated but they can never be exactly the same - part of the beauty of a handmade product! 

Current Eco Dyeing Craft Workshops for 2022

We currently are offerings three craft workshops from February to December 2022. Click on the links below for more details.

We are also planning to introduce hold half-day taster courses as well as more advanced courses on hand dyeing with indigo.

Workshop Tutor

All the yarn and scarves for sale on this website have been hand dyed with natural dyes by the Tutor of these craft workshops - Hand Dyed Yarn  - Hand Dyed Scarves. See Feature in The Knitter magazine on hand dyeing and craft workshops in the FelinFach Dye Studio - Click here...

Customers ask...

  • Do Eco Dyes fade or wash out?

    • Our Courses will leave you with the knowledge to dye yarn and fabrics with lasting colour successfully. Any dye, synthetic or natural that does not follow a proper dyeing process, will fade or wash out. Natural dyes perform comparably to synthetic dyes in washing and lightfast tests.

  • What are the most common Eco Dyes?
    • In today's world, common natural dyes include Indigo, Cochineal, Madder, and Weld.

  • Are Eco Dyes safe?
    • Naturally occurring eco dyes contain chemicals as do synthetic dyes. All insects and plants are made up of chemicals. Every eco dyeing course contain a health and safety element advising how to use and store eco dyes.

    About FelinFach

    Our company, FelinFach Natural Textiles is located in the heart of the Preseli area of Pembrokeshire near to Boncath. We design Welsh blankets and the iconic Welsh Tapestry blankets which are traditionally woven at Welsh mills. We also design and make natural hand dyed yarn, cotton, silk and wool scarves and other handmade products, all available in our yarn store and shop. We also offer Welsh tartans, Sheepskin Rugs, Gift Cards and tools and books for crafters and knitters - Cocoknits, Laine, Amirisu and Making to name a few! Lastly, eco dyeing craft workshops on hand dyeing with 100% natural dyes. We are a proud supporter of the Campaign for Wool, All Things Wales and Global Welsh.

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    Last updates 3rd March 2022