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Our first Global Gardens arts and crafts workshop post lockdown was all about natural dyes with Cat Lewis of Colourfield. Using plants from the garden and other available natural dye plants - including indigo, acorns and sloe berries - we dyed hemp fabric flags to decorate the new Global Gardens classroom space.

We harvested Weld from the Global Gardens dye garden which produced a vivid yellow colour when heated. Cat also prepared a dye vat of acorns (producing a dark brown colour) and of berries (producing a purple colour). We dipped the flags in the pans, watching them absorb the colours. Cat also showed us how to fold the fabric and tie it to get a tie-dyed effect.

Alongside dipping the cloth, we also used hammers to beat leaves and berries into the fabric. The Indigo leaves gave a particularly vivid green whilst other leaves including Oak and Apple left more subtle marks.

On the 3rd October, Cat will be leading a follow-on workshop all about printing with natural dyes. If you would like to find out more about the dye garden and natural dye workshops, email

With thanks to the National Lottery Community Fund in Wales for making this workshop possible.

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