A TECHNIQUE DRIVEN Blog dedicated to mastery of surface design techniques. First we dye, overdye, paint, stitch, resist, tie, fold, silk screen, stamp, thermofax, batik, bejewel, stretch, shrink, sprinkle, Smooch, fuse, slice, dice, AND then we set it on fire using a variety of heat tools.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Ecoprint with cotton: Let the boiling begin!

Now that discussed all aspects, let's start wrapping and boiling:

1. Put the mordanted and wrung cloth flat on a piece of plastic
2. Put a few leaves on the surface. Note: the back of the leaf gives the sharpest prints.

3. Put a second piece of fabric (or the other half) over the first piece.

4. Take a round wooden stick and roll the folded cloth tightly and evenly around it
5. Bind it all off with string - not too tightly and not too loosely.

6. Fill the kettle / pot with enough water to put the wrapped rolls under water and add 1 teaspoon of iron (II) sulphate.
7. Let the sticks slide into the pan and bring the water to boil slowly.

8. The color of the leaves is extracted by boiling vigorously for at least two hours.

9. Cool the pan and remove the rolls from the water letting them rest over night or even longer.

10 .Open up the wrapped poles and remove the leaves. Rinse well with cold water and wash them in warm water with a mild soap.

** Hint ** The dye pot has a long shelf life as well and is reusable until it is exhausted.

Next week, we will check possibilities with adding colour!


  1. I got mixed results. Of 6 wraps, only 3 did any transfer. And those were kind of muddled. I will try again at a later date

    It would also be helpful if you could show some things you have done with your prints. I am not to sure what to do with them now.

    Thanks for the wonderful instructions. I have been working on my own doing eco prints and I have taken a big step forward now.

  2. Thank you for the great step by step process. The prints are delicious!

  3. Your directions are very clear. I have followed them and am awaiting to unwrap, tomorrow; but I can already see the imprints through the cloth. They look wonderful to me.

  4. Quiltswissy, please check my gallery, I mainly use these fabrics in pojagi, as you can take the best parts of the fabric and the probt is two sided, http://www.nienkesmit.nl/p/ecopojagi-2014.html

  5. Thanks all for your nice comments!

  6. Dear Nienke, i got hooked on your post and went to the forest to get some oak gall today. The tea i made was quite brown so i hope it will work tomorrow as i warp and boil... I will let you know ☺️ Have a nice week end and 1000 thanks again !

  7. Yes it will work, definitely! Brown is good ;-) you're welcome!


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