Indigo: The dying art of authentic Indigo
The name indigo comes from the Roman term indicum, which means a product of India, which is where all Heartfelt Design Garments originate.
Heartfelt Designs has built strong relations with traditional craftspeople in India, where indigo dye is made using traditional methods and used for our garments.
Indigo has been an important part of the textile community for centuries. In modern times and with the creation of artificial dyes, the fascinating indigo dye process is slowly being lost.
Indigo dye is extracted from the leaves of several plants, however it was originally sourced from the indigo plant exclusively. The plant extraction takes several steps, as the vibrant blue shade is not found in nature. The first step involved bundling the leaves to get and putting them in a large bin. Water is added and heavy stones added to press the leaves, which is then left to sit for 24 hours. During this period the leaves ferment overnight and turn blue.
The bins are drained and the leaves discarded, while builders lime is mixed into the coloured water. The water and lime are beaten vigorously for a minimum of 20 minutes, which changes the murky water into a shade of navy, with a slightly frothy texture. The water is left to stand over night. This process causes the Indigo paste to seperate from the water. The paste is collected by straining the water to seperate the paste. This paste is used to dye the fabrics for Heartfelt Designs garments.
Heartfelt Designs is proud to use traditional indigo dye and support the crafts people who continue this practice, in a world where synthetic dyes are more commonplace.