As noted in a previous post, this year I am introducing a second line of clothing under my “indochina” label. I have been working under my present label for six years, and wanted to broaden my collection with a second line of clothing made from hand-spun, hand-woven, and hand-dyed fabric that I would source from India and Southeast Asia. I am busy now designing clothes for this new label and hope to offer a few items this spring at my shows or through my online shop. The photo in today’s blog entry shows one sample blouse I have made.
My sleeveless linen top, which I dyed a year-and-a-half ago in a combination of Japanese sumac and “tingi,” a dye substance derived from the bark of a mangrove tree. Clothes dyed with natural substances will experience subtle changes in color over time, as well as a softening of the fabric, which is normal. I dyed this piece as darkly as I could, as I knew I would be wearing and washing this garment often living in a warm climate. I use only a mild detergent, though, and the change in color, while noticeable, is not as pronounced as it would have been had I used harsher detergents. This is why I recommend following the washing instructions given elsewhere in this web site, and washing in “Umi-e” or a similarly mild detergent.