Sunday, May 29, 2011

treasures from the museum of maritime medicine

this spring i was lucky enough to attend international symposium of natural dyes in la rochelle, france. it was an amazing meeting of chemists, artists, craftspeople, and leaders from all around the world working to preserve and protect natural dye traditions while finding new meaning and beauty of color in our modern world. there will be lots of upcoming posts on the conference, but for now i'd like to share some snaps from our field trip to the museum of maritime medicine in rochefort, france. at the museum we saw a beautiful collection of plants, collected on sea voyages and used for medicine. the museum was a cabinet of curiosities just waiting to be photographed.

botanical illustrations of woad.

an old drawing of a dye atelier in action.
bottles of medicinal herbs

Monday, May 23, 2011

when life hands you galangal

i'm back tracking a bit, but as i was looking through some photos from our recent trip to india i had to post this one. in month 4 or so, i really began craving different cuisines. i realized how lucky we are in the bay area to have so many cultures mixed together and to have so many food traditions woven together. i thought hard about what i could make while in our house in chidambaram, going to the markets and smelling different greens and roots and decided i would make a thai feast.

i decided to make a green curry and a peanut, red chili eggplant dish with brown rice and green mango salad.

Monday, May 16, 2011

garden garments part 2

the dark grays from the kadukkai seeds with iron bath and vellum (unrefined whole cane sugar)
gorgeous resist patters from clothespins with onion skin dye.

red sandalwood with added neem for some medicinal properties.

hi friends, we are back in action in sunny bay area. i am taking a step back and returning to india to post about our second garden garments workshop that took place in chennai. this time around we had 25 people from all different backgrounds and ages and it was a truly inspiring and fun afternoon. we experimented with 7 different dyes: nocchi (Vitex negundo), turmeric, onion skins, madder, annatto, kaddukai (myrobalan), and red sandalwood.