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Natural Dyes: Print and Paint

  • Maiwa East 1310 Odlum Drive Vancouver, BC, V5L 3M3 Canada (map)

With Danielle Bush & Sophena Kwon

$495 [Includes $100 lab fee] Class limit 16. Sept 18-21 (Mon-Thur) 10am-4pm.

The ability to thicken natural dyes, tannins, and mordants opens up possibilities for creating designs on fabric that are simply not possible with immersion dyeing. Learning the art of mixing natural dyes extends this potential into new realms.

We will study the techniques of preparing natural dyes and mordants so that they can be used for direct application. The workshop will combine hand-painting with printing techniques such as blockprinting, stamping, and stenciling. Thickened dyes will be used to explore design, layout, repetition, and overlaying techniques. Students will complete original works of art on both silk and cotton fabrics.

During this four-day workshop, students will learn how to create concentrated natural colour from raw plant material. In addition, we will explore the diverse palette of prepared dye extracts. We will work through colour mixing, formulating the perfect consistency for painting, printing, or stenciling. Students will learn how to properly apply the colour for longevity. 

Supply List PDF

Danielle Bush is the manager of Maiwa Supply. Her career in textiles began with sewing and fashion studies at the University of the Fraser Valley. Upon completing courses in design, drawing, drafting, and construction, she was accepted to do a week-long practicum in the textile collection at Maiwa Handprints. In her words, “It changed my life.”

Since 2011 Danielle has developed and taught workshops for the Maiwa Textile Symposium.  In 2009 she represented Maiwa at the International Shibori Conference held in France, and in 2011 she was a facilitator for the Maiwa Natural Dye Master Class taught by Michel Garcia in Bengal, India. Danielle has a deep understanding of and aptitude for dye techniques and the creative process. Together with Sophena Kwon, Danielle travels to India each year where she helps manage the Maiwa studio.


Sophena Kwon grew up with Maiwa as the family business. She has learned much from the artisans Maiwa collaborates with (including master dyers in India, Africa, Peru, and Mexico) and from experimenting alongside her mom, Charllotte.

In 2009 Sophena studied with Michel Garcia in France. She has taught natural dye workshops with Charllotte (including at the Penland School of Craft and at Shakerag) since 2012 and developed and taught workshops for the Maiwa School of Textiles since 2014. In an effort to bring natural dyeing to a new audience, she founded the immensely successful Indigo Social in 2015. In 2016 Sophena was invited to present at the Mood Indigo Exhibition at the Seattle Art Museum.

In addition to her natural dye work, Sophena is a skilled photographer and clothing designer. Each year she travels to India to direct the Maiwa line of clothing.

Earlier Event: September 18
Later Event: September 21