Plant-Based Watercolor Set

$ 84


Every time clothing is dyed, some of the dye doesn't adhere to the fabric.  For conventional synthetic dyes, this means that between 50-70% of the dye ends up as wastewater that pollutes our waterways. While all our dyes are natural and plant-based, allowing us to use the extra dye water to irrigate our dye garden, we are always looking for a way to reuse our amazing plant-dyes to help lower our overall impact.

Hence this plant-based watercolor set. We have extracted the remaining plant dyes from our dye vats and used historical watercolor recipes to create these all natural plant-based watercolors.

The set includes 5 colors  - all three primary colors plus white and black, allowing you to create a limitless number of beautiful plant colors - as well as the wooden paint holder made from local, sustainably harvested walnut and sealed with an all natural wax.

Ingredients: organic plant dyes, arabic gum, local honey, vegetable glycerin, white wheat starch, food grade calcium carbonate from ground limestone, organic clove essential oil

As a note, these watercolors are made from plant dyes and will dye clothing, so if you have been looking for a way to give that old shirt a second life (stripes anyone?), now is your chance, though we recommend wearing an apron while painting.

Each set is handmade in Los Angeles.

Unlike conventional watercolor paints, our watercolors are 100% natural, using only plant dyes, minerals and other natural ingredients. The plant dyes include indigo leavesmadder rootsweldmyrobalan, oak galls, and logwood.

Indigo leaf dye has been safely used for thousands of years (dating back to 2000-3000 B.C.) for its ability to make strong and beautiful blues. In the 1800s, natural indigo was almost completely replaced by synthetic indigo, which is derived from the known toxin aniline (a chemical that has been used to make rocket fuel).

Madder root is one of the oldest natural dyes, known for its ability to make beautiful reds. It has been safely used for thousands of years, since at least ancient Egypt (cloth dyed with it has even been found alongside the possessions of King Tut).

Weld is an incredible natural dye plant that was historically used throughout Europe, Asia and was even used by native Americans. It is known for its ability to make the longest lasting natural yellows, and also makes olive greens with small amounts of iron.

The dried fruits of myrobalan trees used for dyeing are commonly used in ayurvedic and traditional Tibetan medicine. Because myrobalan is very high in antoxidants, it has been used to protect against various age and heart related diseases.

Oak galls are high in tannins that bind to fabric and paper to create long lasting color. Oak also has natural antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce skin irritation.

Logwood dye is extracted from the heartwood of logwood trees. It has been safely used in Europe since the 1500s, and by the Mayans for hundreds of years before that.

Each set is handmade in Los Angeles in our dye facility. Sustain ensures that everyone in our supply chain is paid a fair wage and has safe working conditions.

This set is made using with organic plant extracts. Plant dyes do not produce toxic run-off like conventional (and other organic dyes) and plant dyes remove carbon from the air during the plants' growth, helping reverse the cause of global climate change.

All ingredients are natural and biodegradable.

Use Instructions: Use and mix as typical for conventional watercolor paints. We recommend painting on watercolor paper.

If using to paint fabric, we recommend scouring the fabric first to allow the paint to evenly adhere. Also, to help the paint set, let the paint dry completely and iron or steam to help further set the paint before use.

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