THE DYEHAUS STORY
DyeHaus is my studio, situated in the Upper Blue Mountains near Sydney and venue for DyeHaus workshops. As my base, the surrounding garden, plants and animals, the bush and the silence offer endless inspiration for colour, texture and patterns.
INSPIRATION FROM ACROSS THE GLOBE
I scout the globe researching dye techniques to further expand my knowledge as a tutor of DyeHaus workshops where I pass on what I have seen and learnt.
I visited the dye garden in Lauris, Provence, on a number of trips and it is here that I had a very formative weeklong workshop with Michel Garcia in 2015 learning the art of Mordant Printing, Hapazome Flower Pounding and dye extraction from Persicaria Tinctoria.
2018 a workshop in his new home in Brittany focussed on Indigo extraction, tannins, and printing with dyes.
Other influential workshops were at the Shibori Symposium in Oaxaca, again with Michel Garcia on Mayan Blue as well as dyeing with Cochineal.
Another dye master from Japan, Hiroshi Murase taught me various stitch resist techniques like Nui shibori as well as a great number of tie resists.
A couple of trips to Japan's Arimatsu Shibori Festival gave me great insight into the history and practises of Shibori that are still alive in this old trading town. The many examples there and Kyoto's Shibori museum gave me great inspiration for teaching and my own work.
I also have explored Eastern Dye techniques in Java and Bali, Indonesia. The dye garden in Umajati near Ubud, Bali connected to Threads of Life, offered endless opportunities to investigate plants and again dye techniques which can be very different from our own as well as ikat and wax batik. A visit to IKTT in Cambodia deepened this knowledge.
In India I learned wood block printing in Bagru and did workshops with the famous mud printers.
Apart from a Diploma in Textile Design and a myriad of units of pertinent art courses, I hold a teaching qualification. This, combined with my need to share the knowledge that I encounter in workshops with the world's best and the need for up to date information in Australia, made me start DyeHaus Workshops in 2013.
DYE BOTANICALS SUSTAINABLY SOURCED FROM MY GARDEN
As I have access to a cornucopia of local and exotic plants in my backyard, I mainly use those in my work and workshops as well as ancient dyes such as Madder, Weld, Cutch, Fustic, Indigo and Pomegranate but always with a focus on wash fastness and efficiency of dyes and thorough preparation of fabric and lasting dye practices.
Currently I am looking to re-interpret and update the concept of Natural Dyes with DYESCAPES to give this well practised craft a more modern slant in a more conceptual context as well as expand the scope of substrates by using leather.
DyeHaus uses natural and sometimes low-impact fibre-reactive dyes depending on requirements, always on natural fibres such as silk, cotton, linen, wool, bamboo and hemp.
All accessories are hand-dyed on site and assembled in Australia.
DyeHaus focuses on the new and unusual, and seeks the untrodden paths in travel as well as in the exploration of new techniques.
My work is largely influenced by the timeless craft of Indigo Shibori resist dyeing, which I am very drawn to, since it blends into contemporary and traditional surroundings and offers endless variations.
The fact that I have spent a lifetime in pursuit of Dyeing and Textiles as well as Art, Ceramics, Gardening design and diverse studies, is reflected in my approach to teaching as well as designing. Both are imbued with knowledge, experience and passion.
Highlights of my accomplishments and learning
3 day Masterclass with Jane Callender, Callishibori, Hawaii
Masterclass, 5 dayWorkshop with Catherine Ellis in Berkeley, USA
New Private Workshops at DyeHaus
New release of DyeHaus Atelier Leather collection
Masterclass with Michel Garcia, Brittany on dye printing, Indigo extraction, medieval dye practices
Corporate workshop at CAMILLA headquarters, Sydney
Visit to Lauris, Dye garden Couleur Garance
Siem Riep, Cambodia workshop at IKTT Weaving cooperative
Natural Dye and Hapazome workshops at Workshop Redfern
Oaxaca, Mexico, Shibori Symposium, Workshops with Michel Garcia, Mayan Blue and Cochineal 4 ways
Elsa Chartin, Itajime resist with vat dyes
Traditional Dye techniques in carpet weaver Village, Teotilán del Valle, Indigo, Cochineal
private study tour Arimatsu Shibori Festival, visit studio of Sekka artist
in Tokyo, Amuse Boro Museum
Meeting Hiroyuki Shindo at his house and Museum in Miyama
Review of DyeHaus Travel Scarves in The Australian by Susan Kurosawa
Ubud, Threads of Life, Umajati Dye Garden
Collaboration with Talonmade Handbags in Hamburg creating unique canvas handbags with leather trim.
Exhibiting handbags on Selvedge Run in Berlin
One week masterclass with Hiroshi Murase from Suzusan and Yoshiko Wada on Shibori techniques, gambiered silk and tannin dyeing
Java, visits to studios
Batik workshop at Wintonosastro, Yogyakarta
Workshops for Laneway Learning
Lauris , France
One week masterclass with Michel Garcia on Mordant printing on Cotton, Natural Indigo vat, Hapazome, Screenprinting with dyes, dyeing with a variety of natural dyes
2 day workshop with Abubakar Fofana on Natural Indigo dyeing and setting up a fructose vat
Shibori Festival in Arimatsu, Japan
Small workshops, visits of Studios in Ohara, learning Kakishibui persimmon dyeing,
TAFTA workshop on Natural Dyeing and Ecoprint
TAFTA workshop on discharge dyeing, 3D Shibori
Collaboration with Emilie Cacace from Andéol making handbags, homewares and beach sheets
Inception of DyeHaus workshops, Mt Irvine
Natural Dye workshop with Trace Willans
Diploma of Textile Design and Screen Print
Celta teaching qualification
The first DyeHaus kaftan
(made from an old sheet), 1974
I often get asked how long I have been dyeing - that's how long!