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56605 Sitka Drive
Otis, OR 97368
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The Naturalist Dyer: Using Native Plants as Dyes and Pigments

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Print Workshop Info
The Naturalist Dyer: Using Native Plants as Dyes and Pigments
Iris Sullivan Daire
Date and Time:
10:00 - 4:00
Total Cost:
Minimum Age Level:
Skill Level:
All Levels
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The open enrollment period begins on
March 10, 2020

Workshop registration opens for members on February 27.

Workshop Overview

Ink made from Sitka spruce needles, detailed prints of Pacific Ninebark leaves—these are just a few of the hidden treasures which await the naturalist dyer. In this workshop we will explore and document the dye and ink making potential of plants native to Cascade Head in our naturalist journals. Day one starts with an easy hike around the Grass Mountain site, making observations and gathering dye plants. Back in the studio, we will dye sample swatches and make botanical contact prints on paper and cloth using steam. On day two, we will pen our printed bundles, create inks and assemble our naturalist journals. Many skills will be presented in this workshop including preparing natural fibers for dyeing, creating dye baths, pigments and inks from plants, direct printing of plants onto paper and cloth using steam (known as eco-printing), simple book binding, plant identification, plant gathering ethics and dye studio safety. Skills learned can be applied to further enjoy any landscape.

About the Instructor(s)

Iris Sullivan Daire is an artist and naturalist dyer, who uses site specific pigments and dyes to add new layers of meaning to the narrative of her work. She relishes using science, metaphor and story to bring the materials to life while teaching.

Iris lives with her family next to the Columbia River in Astoria Oregon. She grows traditional dye plants, and has been quietly mapping the hidden colors contained within the native and invasive plants of the North Oregon Coast. She holds a BFA in Fiber Arts from University of Oregon and has been teaching for over 20 years.

Materials List: Students Bring

• Good walking shoes

• Apron or studio clothes

• 6 large office clips

• Note taking supplies


• Glass dip pen for homemade inks

• Garden Clippers

• Garden type gloves

Materials List: Provided by Instructor(s)

• Detailed class handouts with all instructions and plant list

• A variety of prepared natural fabrics for botanical prints & sample swatches

• Watercolor paper for botanical prints

• All dye assists, modifiers and ink making supplies

• Small bottles for ink

• Paper and binding materials for making naturalist dyer journals

• Dye pots & propane stoves

• Strainers, buckets, hot mitts, tongs, rubber gloves...

• Selection of field guides for student reference

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