As interesting as it would sound, Herbal Dyeing is a very simple process unlike the typical synthetic dyeing process. It cannot be simpler than extracting the colours of our nature, our environment and just simply applying it on the fabric. That’s it. That’s how it is done!
Organic cotton, herbal dyed with elements of nature makes a cloth pure in its true essence. The organic fabric is treated with colours extracted from the herbs purely through eco-friendly processes. The herbs that we use are also renowned for their medicinal values and are truly a gift of nature to us. It is not a new-found process that we have found or developed, in fact it was a very common practice in ancient India where the process was executed with hands only on a small scale. Today, that practice has evolved to large scale manufacturing that can produce a varied range of shades and prints.
We at Apanakah, believe in reserving the environment and its resources. That is why we introduced our Songs of Earth collection that is handmade in 100% organic cotton and is hand dyed with pigments from nature.
The best part about herbal dyeing is that it does bleed colours in the initial 1-2 washes but with every wash, you’ll get to see a rich change in the colour shades which will make you love it even more. Thats the beauty of organic clothing.
Let us take you through the process of Herbal Dyeing:
Herbal dyeing as a process was a result a of extensive research on age-old dyeing methods practiced during the times of Indus valley civilisation. The greige cloth is passed through several stages of cloth treatment before it could be made ready for dyeing. The entire process of greige cloth treatment is kept 100% natural.
Step 1: De-sizing
The processed greige cloth is washed with natural mineral-rich water and sea salts that removes the sizing, gums and oils that are used in the course of weaving.
Step 2: Bleaching
The washed fabric is then exposed to direct sunlight on a ground with natural grass base and the animal manure starts the bleaching process of the fabrics.
Step 3: Mordanting
Natural mordants such as myraballam, rhubard leaves, oils, minerals, alum, iron etc are used in order to make the colours bright and fast. In this step of herbal dyeing, heavy metal mordants such as copper, chrome, zinc and tin are not used at all.
Step 4: Dyeing
We only use herbs that are extracted from nature. These herbs are medicinally rich as well such as turmeric, myraballam, castor oil, sea salt. These herbs, plant materials, minerals and oils are then used for dyeing of the fabric. We aspire to retain and achieve the qualities of these herbs by directly immersing them in the dye bath for the very same reason.
Step 5: Finishing
In the herbal dyeing process, the fabric finishing is executed by sprinkling water on the cloth and stretching it under pressure using hand rolls.
Step 6: Recycling Plant
Solid and liquid wastes are both separated through a simple process of filtration and are then used for farming. Solid waste as manure and liquid waste for watering the fields.
You can buy products from our organic collection 'Songs of Earth' that will make you feel like a wildflower hugged and tugged in nature.