Natural DyesAlex Foster
Exploring Plants and Color at Mountain Run Jam
Exploring the magical landscape at Mountain Run Farm. Together we will gather leaves, flowers, and weeds, to create colorful prints on cloth. This process is called ecoprinting, it is a fun way to better understand the plants living near you!
Ain’t Never Been Blue: Exploring Indigo + Shibori
Explore the wonders of natural indigo dyeing in combination with shibori resist techniques to create gorgeous blue patterns on cloth. Indigo is nature’s blue, together we will mix up a dye vat and cover the basics for keeping your indigo in reduction and dyeing happy. From there we will dive into the wonderful world of shibori, an ancient Japanese method for resist dyeing, traditionally used with indigo dye. We will learn how to fold, wrap, and tie fabric to create a vast range of patterns. Don’t forget to bring a white cotton t-shirt for dyeing!
Alex Foster (they/she) is an interdisciplinary artist working with natural dyes and printing with plants on fabric. They were born and raised in Roanoke Virginia, nurtured by Blue Ridge Mountain breezes and the winding paths of the Appalachian Trail.
Alex has always been distracted by the restlessness of their hands. As a child, Alex was often found tying knots, making scarves and jewelry from rope, twigs, and cloth. They went on to earn a BFA in Studio Art from James Madison University, concentrating on Fibers and Material Studies. A deep love for fabric has led them to work as a studio assistant at Aya Fiber Studio on the Treasure Coast of Florida, an apprenticeship as a costume stitcher for the American Shakespeare Center, and multiple work-study fellowships at schools of craft.
Foster was awarded the Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage Artist of the year in 2020. They teach workshops across Virginia and the Appalachian region. Foster’s work investigates the human fallacy of separation, from the natural world and one another, through color and cloth.
Follow @fosterfiber on Instagram to learn more about the natural dye and printing process. Please reach out to learn more about future workshops and collaboration opportunities.
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