Dyeing with Fresh-Leaf Indigo, Limited Edition
FEBRUARY 5, 2015
Well, it’s finally edited, printed, bound, and ready to go! I have been working on this book for years now and am quite pleased to be able to offer it to those of you interested in natural indigo.
View showing cover and spine.
The cover is Japanese silk I’ve dyed with the fresh-leaf indigo from my garden in Northern California, laminated to a wood core.
Above is a detail of the cover design. First, the silk–a Japanese jacquard–was dyed using a cold, fresh-leaf vat. The stencil to the right was then used to apply the rice-paste resist to the silk. The image of the tadeai indigo leaves and blossoms was dyed with theaibana saved from a reduced vat, and the entire piece dunked several times in the dry-leaf, reduced vat to build up color. Once the paste was washed out, additional tints of non-reduced indigo pigment and a touch of iron-rust pigment from my well were added to the leaves and blossoms, respectively.
Yardage with paste, stretched overhead in traditional Japanese manner.
Aibana covering top of reduced vat.
Accent applied over paste using aibana from top of vat
Yardage suspended over vat - first dunk.
Table of Contents
The two pages of What’s Inside will give you a pretty good idea of all that is included.
Second dunk in indigo.
Yardage with paste and aibana accent after fourth dunk.
The image below is an example of the types of samples included with the directions. It was created with rice-paste resist pushed through a stencil I carved in the 1980s. Aibana pigment was applied as accents and the cotton yardage was then dunked twelve times in the dry-leaf, reduced tadeai vat before the paste was rinsed out. A final coat of soymilk was applied to prevent crocking, strengthen the silk, and help keep the silk resistant to soiling.
Opened to page 30/31 – fountain pen added to give sense of scale.
Below are several sample pages illustrating the range of blues possible with fresh-leaf indigo on a variety of fibers. Each page is printed on heavy-stock, acid-free paper. The pages are dye-cut,  kimono silhouettes. The bound book is 12-1/2″ by 6-3/4″.  After quite a bit of research and experimentation, I developed a method of binding in which the pages have been laminated to silk at the spine and stitched to create an enduring hinge. The book will easily stay open without curling pages, inviting regular use.
Detail of sample on page 31, Okinawan Landscape.
The page to the left is placed at the very end of the book. It states the edition number of the one hundred copies I’ve prepared. It also includes a coupon for seeds when you are ready to plant (the coupon will be returned with the seeds).

If you are interested in ordering the book, or have any questions, please feel free to contact me at, or you may purchase the book through PayPal by clicking on the button below.

The book is $450 through August of 2015, after which the price will change to $550. (Feel free to inquire about payment plans.)
Detail of cover along with the stencil used to apply the paste resist.
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