Experiments with Natural Dye

June 12, 2019 Andrew 1 Comments

Even though there’s a lot of information on natural dying available, I want to share the simple process I used to dye my white dress to a rosy pink using avocado pits and skins. Avocado leftovers can create beautiful pinks and light browns and are rich with tannins that help to set the colour. Those earthy tones are some of my favourite colours and my thrifted white dress was perfect to try the dye out on.

I washed my dress and let it air dry on the clothes line. In a pot, I boiled eight avocado pits and skins in four litres of water. Instead of putting them in the compost, I washed the avocado pits and skins and kept them in the freezer until I was ready.  To make the dye, I boiled the pits and skins for about four hours until the liquid was reduced and the colour intensified. The hot pot was then set out to cool overnight in the porch. In the morning I strained out the pits and skins and put the dress in the pot of dye with a little extra water so that my dress was fully submerged. I put the pot back on the stove and slowly brought the mix up to a simmer. The dress simmered for about a half an hour, soaking up that beautiful red colour. Then the pot went back to the porch to cool. Once it was all cooled off, I rinsed the dress in the sink and washed it in the washing machine.

It was great to hang my dyed dress outside to dry and see the beautiful new earthy rose colour that it had become.

1 people reacted on this

  1. That’s awesome. I have used natural dyes; however, I’ve never tried avocado. Thank you for the inspiration.

    I’ve used walnuts, marigolds, beets, lichens, and onion skins all of which are handy around our gardens and forest.

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