Starting a CSA to Dye For
Starting this summer in Brooklyn, an abandoned lot on the corner of Bergen and 4th Street will be transformed as part of the 596 Acres project. The Sewing Seeds CSA garden will run for a 6 month season between June and November 2012, providing members with plants to be used as natural dyes, as well as recipes and workshops utilizing them.
The Sewing Seeds CSA will create a new green space in the Gowanus community, as well as strongly interact with Textile Arts Center education programs. Sewing Seeds will provide information on the plants, dye extraction, and dye technique, serving as a backdrop for free workshops and lectures for the community.
While the Sewing Seeds CSA shareholders’ fees will cover all the expenses throughout the season, the Bergen Street plot has been abandoned and unloved for years. The funds raised through Kickstarter will cover the initial work and materials to convert this land into the new Sewing Seeds garden. Soil, raised beds, irrigation system, etc. will make this unused land an enjoyable and educational space for all of us in the community. And the only way to make this project possible is to raise enough money to cover the initial expenses.
Your donation will be much appreciated! We’re counting on you to help us make our community more colorful.
What is Sewing Seeds? The Sewing Seeds project started in 2010 at the Textile Arts Center with the mission to provide accessible, accurate and inspired information on natural dyes to our community. So far, this project has included classes and workshops on natural dyes, for adults and kids, grown a Living Library of Natural Dyes in the Carroll Street Community Garden as a reference and teaching tool, and created a database on natural dyes and recipes which will soon be freely available online.
Why Natural Dyes? Before the invention of synthetic dyes in the 19th century, the world wasn't black and white. It was full of bright colors, extracted from the bounty around us; from leaves, flowers, fruits, roots and bark. Today most of these plants can be grown in a sustainable way and used to dye fabric and yarn with minor impact in the environment, to the dyer, and to the user. Not to mention that a lot of sources for natural dyes are actually wasted by modern cultures, like onion skins, carrot tops and rhubarb leaves.
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