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Events > Shibori Dyeing with Indigo

Saturday, June 8th, 1PM - 4PM


Main Street Studio’s resident studio artist and “Chief Dyeing Scientist”, Renee Johnson, will introduce Shibori, an ancient Japanese dyeing technique that creates intricate patterns on fabric typically set against a rich indigo blue color. There are many ways of folding, stitching and dyeing the fabric that can be used to create simple to very complex patterns. There is a little bit of math, and a lot of experimentation that goes into mastering this craft!

For this three hour workshop, you will start with learning a “water ripple” folding technique on a 24” bandanna. Once you get that cloth soaking in the indigo, you will then get to practice more intricate folding and stitching techniques on a 28” hand towel to create a “wood grain” pattern and several other variations. Renee will have many examples of the types of patterns and other prepared material scraps so you can keep experimenting if time allows!

Throughout the class, you will be dipping your fabric several times into an indigo vat that will dye the fabric blue everywhere except for where your folds and stitches are. If you haven’t had a chance to see the chemical reaction of the indigo dye in action before, it is really quite fascinating. You will be able to bring home the finished bandana and towel to use in other sewing or mending projects, or display them on their own!

This workshop is perfect for those who love playing with colors and patterns and have some basic sewing skills.

Renee Johnson is always on the search for unique and beautiful textiles and notions to be used by crafters and seamstresses alike. She also hand dyes fabrics and sashiko threads using natural materials like indigo and black walnut. Renee is also always up for collaborating and experimenting with anything we can think of to dye in the studio! If you are interested in mending, sewing or other traditional Japanese fabric/textile crafts, you can find her supplies online at or stop by the studio and see what she is working on!

**Saratoga Arts Community Arts Regrant Program **

We would like to thank the Town of Charlton and Saratoga Arts who helped to make this program possible through the Community Arts Regrant Program, funded by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.