Natural dying with materials gathered from the hedgerows and various eco leaf prints.
I have been dying my own fabrics for several years using procion dyes, and rarely use commercial fabrics in my work.
I recently bought India Flints book Eco dying and was immediately hooked. I especially love eco printing with different leaves,rolling the leaves into small bundles and steaming them, you then hopefully get a leaf print, it's all very hit and miss but great fun.
I have been using these naturally dyed and printed fabrics in my latest works of small birds,the colour and marks lend themselves perfectly to the colour and texture of the birds, I then free machine the details of the feathers, hand stitching is then added to give even more texture.
I like to gather my own materials from the hedgerows,I've collected tree bark, berries, acorns,chestnut husks,bracken, Heather,leaves, fungi, and even seaweed all give a good lasting colour.
The textiles (cotton,linen,silk,wool ) all have to be mordanted before dying to fix the colour,I nearly always use alum.
I also have 2 very large old pans 1 being iron the other copper,these can also determine the colour of the end results.