Ecoprinting with Laura Dell'Erba - Viscose and Voile

Ecoprinting is a wonderful technique to dye fabrics with zero impact on the environment. Whatís more, the results you can get with this dyeing method are truly astonishing. Indeed, because the leaves and the flowers are in direct contact with the fabric, the printed motives will be very crisp. If you havenít tried ecoprinting yet, now itís the time to do it!

In Italy, the ecoprinting guru is our friend†Laura Dell'Erba. We asked her to work with fabrics of plant and animal origin, specifically ourviscose crepe voileand our†silk cotton voile. Discover the results by reading this tutorial. I love it!
TEMPORARY - 140 cm wide Crepe Voile 100% Viscose - Raw Colors
Natural White
1 m € 8,14
€ 11,63
2 m € 15,96
€ 22,80
5 m € 38,68
€ 55,25
Natural Dye Extract 75 g - Turmeric
Turmeric - 75 g
1 pc. € 25,33
Natural Dye Extract 75 g - Logwood
Logwood - 75 g
1 pc. € 34,77
Natural Dye Extract 75 g - Nut
Nut - 75 g
1 pc. € 13,32

Ecoprinting on viscose crepe

For ecoprinting on fabrics of plant origin you do not need to use vinegar as you do for etamine, gauze and silk chiffon 6. Firstly, symmetrically fold the fabric into an accordion fold.


Pick the leaves you wish to use and put them inside the fold. If you want a result thatís similar to mine, you can use leaves from chestnut tree, Norway maple, liquidambar, ailanthus and blackberry bush. You can also add some onion skin and sandalwood.

Next, take an iron rod and wrap some cotton cloth around it, so that the fibers of the fabric you want to print will not get ruined. Start from the edge of the fabric and roll it up, carefully avoiding to create any creases.


Finally, close the roll on both sides and use some doubled kitchen twine to tie it up.

After this, start mixing 3 grams of logwood extract into some cold water. Use a pot with a capacity of at least 25 liters and put the viscose crepe roll in it, with the mixture you have prepared. Keep in mind that itís always best to cook vegetable fibers for at least one hour.


This is what the viscose crepe looks like after boiling. See the details that you can achieve with ecoprinting.


Ecoprinting on 70% cotton, 30% silk

You can use ecoprinting on voile, too. The first step is to fold your fabric into an accordion fold. Once thatís done, put your leaves into the fold. If you wish to do the same as I did, use fern, rosa rugosa, rumex, cornus and prunus leaves.


After you have placed the leaves onto the fabric, get an iron rod, and wrap some cotton fabric around it. Be careful not to make any creases. To tie the fabric more easily, fasten both sides with a rubber band, then tie the fabric with some doubled kitchen twine.


Prepare a mixture with 4 grams of chlorophyll extract and put it into a pot with approximately 25 liters of water.

Put the 70% cotton, 30% silk voile roll into the cold water, then bring to a boil and simmer for 45 minutes.†


This is what the 70% cotton, 30% silk voile looks like once you take out of the pot. Look at the amazing detail you can achieve with eocprinting.

This is the finished fabric. So bright and delicate.


In this article, Laura Dell'Erba taught you all her secrets to use ecoprinting techniques on fabrics of plant origin. In this other article, Paola BarzanÚ, a natural dye expert, will teach you 10 golden rules for dyeing.

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