When I heard months ago that Kristine Vejar from A Verb for Keeping Warm in Oakland,California was working on a book about natural dyeing, I got really excited. Started in 2007 by Kristine, A Verb for Keeping Warm has been home base for Kristine’s explorations into natural dyeing and is located in Oakland, California. It is the home of The Modern Natural Dyer – as this is where Kristine has conducted all of her research for this book. A Verb for Keeping Warm is a brick & mortar shop, natural dye studio and classroom teaching knitting, dyeing, sewing and weaving. I hope to visit this dream space in the near future, but in the meantime I follow Kristine’s inspiring work very closely online.
I was over the moon to receive an advanced copy of The Modern Natural Dyer to review. Firstly, it is absolutely stunning. The photography by Sara Remington captures the beauty of the dye colours and projects perfectly. I have been endlessly examining every detail of the book and rich photographs since it arrived. If you’re brand new to the world of dyeing, this would be an incredible introduction. If you’re experienced with natural dyeing already you’ll be reinvigorated to delve deeper with all the great resources provided. Kristine covers all the basics in the first half of the book and then shares twenty different projects divided by – dyeing with whole dyestuffs, dyeing with extracts, dyeing with indigo and then surface design techniques. The projects range from dyeing pre-made items like a slip, silk scarf or tote bag to dyeing yarn to knit a hat, shawl or cardigan.
Brilliantly, Kristine has also launched a series of kits to go with four of the book’s projects. I chose the ‘Flowers at my fingertips’ kit to make a sweet sewing kit. Everything you need is included in the kit – the fabric, a packet of seeds to grow the flowers, thread, gloves, mordant and scour. What a special gift idea these would kits would make. I don’t think I can wait until next year to plant those seeds to grow the flowers for this project. I’ll gather some fresh flowers together to eco print this over the fall to make the sewing kit. I’m excited to have the seeds to plant next year to start a little dye garden. It’s something I’ve thought about for a while.
The Modern Natural Dyer exceeded all my high expectations. I’m so inspired by everything that Kristine has created with her studio/shop/enterprise and this book is a real treasure that I’ll keep referring to over and over. Congratulations, Kristine! Thank you so much for including me in your book tour.
We’ll have copies of The Modern Natural Dyer soon at the workroom. In the meantime, one lucky winner will receive a copy of book AND a kit of their choice. Please leave a comment below and let me know if you’ve tried natural dyeing before and which of the four kits you would choose to try. Contest closes November 16th midnight EST. I’ll choose a lucky winner randomly.