I Can't Stop
Big Magic

Eco Dyeing Leather

  IP - Leather Bundle

Not all my experiments turn out successfully. In fact there are quite a few disasters as well. This post is about one of the disasters.

While I was at the Wild By Nature village camp I ran an eco dyeing workshop. I threw into the pots a wool bundle, a paper bundle and a leather bundle. The wool scarf was spectacular, the paper bundle understated and the leather bundle a complete disaster.

I bundled cinerea leaves on veg tanned roo skin around a stick and put it into a stainless steel pot filled with cabbage leaves. When I checked on the bundle after a couple of hours it seemed okay. After a night simmering away over the fire however it was a different story.

The leather melted together and went the consistency and texture of chewing gum. I could only unbundle a tiny section and it looked like there weren't any leaf prints or colour on the leather. I'm so grateful that I only had time to experiment with one piece of leather and that the other two pieces are still waiting their turn in the dye pot.

I'm going to chalk his one up to experience. After all, making mistakes is part of the creative process. It hasn't put me off though. If anything it's made me more determined to get some leaf prints on leather. After all, leather is an animal fibre so in theory should work very well with vegetable dyes. Maybe next time I'll experiment with some commercial leather or steaming.