Natural Dye Materials

Dyes derived from natural plants, vegetables and other natural sources were used until the discovery of the first synthetic dye in 1856. So here are a few natural sources for dyes and what colours they yield. If you know of one that I missed please feel free to email me with it and what colour it yields. The shades were determined by the type and amount of mordant used as well as what the fabric was woven from (animal or plant).

William Henry Perkin discovered the first synthetic dye stuff "Mauve" (aniline, a basic dye) while searching for a cure for malaria and a new industry was begun. It was a brilliant fuchsia type color, but faded easily so our idea of the color mauve is not what the appearance of the original colour was.


SHADES OF BLACK
Buckthorn Berries Oak Bark Oak Gall
SHADES OF BLUE
Blackberries Blueberries Buckwheat
Cabbage Leaves
(Robin Egg Blue)
Dandelion Root Indigo
Logwood
(Blue-Violet, Purple, Blue-Black, Silver, Grey and Black Grey)
Turnsole Woad
SHADES OF BROWN
Acorns
(Ground Nuts)
Catechu
(Yellow-Brown, Red-Brown, Brown-Black and Medium Brown)
Coffee Grinds
Cutch Extract
(Carmel to Coffee Brown)
Gipsywort Hawthorne Berries
Juniper Berries Mahogany Sawdust Red Sandalwood
Sumac Leaves Tea
(Light Brown)
Walnut Hulls
SHADES OF GREEN
Artichokes Black-Eyed Susans Grass
Lily-of-the-Valley Nettle Plaintain Roots
Privet Berries Spinach Leaves Yarrow
SHADES OF GREY
Alkanet Root
(Bluish-Grey to Burgundy)
Iris Roots Blackwood Bark
SHADES OF ORANGE
Annatto Seed Henna Sassafras Leaves
SHADES OF PEACH
Broom Flower Elm
(Corals and Oranges)
Quebracho Red
(Peach to Antique Rose)
SHADES OF PINK
Cherries Red Raspberries Strawberries
SHADES OF PURPLE
Blackberry Berries Elderberries Grapes
Moss Red Cabbage Red Cedar Root
SHADES OF RED
Beets Bloodroot Brazil Wood Dust
(Christmas Red to Garnet, Pink, Deep Maroon and Off-Black)
Chokecherries Cinnabar Cochineal Beetle
(Dark Burgundy, Bright Red, Soft Lilac, Pink, Crimson, Scarlet, Lavender, Violet, Grey-Violet and Black)
Cranberries Dandelion Roots Madder
(Brick Red, Bright Orange, Burgundy and Off-Black)
Red Onion Skins Rose Hips Woodruff
SHADES OF RED-PURPLE
Lac
(Old Rose to Bordeau)
Ladies Bedstraw
(Dull Red, Red, Light Orange-Red, Purple-Red, Bluish-Green)
Pokeweed Berries
SHADES OF YELLOW
Almond Tree Leaves Apple Tree Bark
(Sunshine Yellow)
Ash Bark
Burdock Celery Leaves Chameleon Plant
(Golden Yellow)
Chrysanthemum Flowers Coreopsis Dahlias
Dandelion Flowers
(Yellow-Green)
Field Mustard
(Golden Yellow)
Goldenrod Flowers
(Sunshine Yellow)
Magnolia Marigold Blossoms Mistletoe
Onion Skins Orange Peels
(Light Yellow)
Osage Orange Dust
(Yellow and Gold)
Pear Tree Bark
(Sunshine Yellow)
Queen Anne’s Lace Saffron
(Golden Yellow)
Savory Spinach Leaves
(Light Gold)
Sumac Bark
Tumeric Powder
(Golden Yellow)
Weld
(Bright Yellow, Cool Lemon, Rich Yellow, Sage and Soft Green)
Willow Leaves





Back to Clothing Terms Directory

Back to Whence You Came Onward to Colours

Back to Main Directory





Galerie de Paris
© Copyright 2002
TRG Creations