A Dyer's Garden: Growing, Creating, and Understanding Color

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Fall 2017
Winter 2018
Credits per quarter

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Taught by

ethnobotany, environmental and cultural anthropology, plant studies

“She turned back to inspect a bank of greens: olive, jade, leaf, kiwi, lime, a silver-green

like the back of birch leaves, a bright pistachio.” Anne BartlettKnitting

Dyes are substances that impart color to other materials such as fibers (including fabric, paper, yarn, and baskets). Currently, an Indigenous Fiber Arts Studio is under construction as the first step of establishing an Indigenous Arts Campus adjacent to Evergreen’s “House of Welcome” Longhouse. Participants in this program will have the opportunity to design and install a garden of dye plants to support the Fiber Arts Studio. Toward this end, students will learn about the history of natural dyes in different places and times, including among the Coast Salish; explore color science, perception, and theory; study plants used as dyes; experience the art of dyeing with plants; and develop skills required to design and create a dye garden.  Activities will include lectures, readings, research, writing, workshops, labs, and hands-on fieldwork. 

This offering will prepare you for careers and advanced study in: botany, arts, history, cultural ecology, Indigenous studies, horticultural design

Online learning:
  • Enhanced Online Learning - This offering requires access to web-based tools, but use of these tools does not displace any face-to-face instruction.

$55 Fall for museum entrance and project supplies; $65 Winter for workshop supplies


Scheduled for: Weekend

Located in: Olympia

Final schedule and room assignment:


Advertised schedule:

Saturdays, 9:30-5:30

2017-12-04Winter quarter fee added ($65)