Tools + Supplies

Published on July 23rd, 2009 | by Kelly Rand

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Yearn Worthy Yarn: Ecological Arts

So we’ve all heard of the benefits of the 100 mile diet and have even coined the term locavore, but what about using the same principals and applying them to yarn?

Well, meet Ecological Arts who offers a small amount of handspun, organic and naturally dyed yarns.

Not only are these yarns, handspun, organic and naturally dyed, the fibers are locally sourced as well as the plants used in the dyes.

Their organic cotton yarn is from an heirloom variety cotton grown in the North Central Valley of California. Its color is naturally occurring and doesn’t require dying.

Their wool yarns are organic and sourced from a local farm, found not 30 miles from Ecological Arts. The plants used to dye the fiber are collected around the artist’s home.

Everything I make is naturally dyed from materials that I gather, or from a fair trade project from one of the many countries that I or friends, have visited.

Says Rebecca Burgess, founder of Ecological Arts.

Some of the frequently used plants found in dyeing these yarns are the Coyote Brush and Sage, which produce a yellow color, and Toyon which gives a peach or tan color. All of which are native and local to the state of California.

To complete this level of local production and to be a locavore of this yarn, these yarns would be best suited to those residing in California.



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About the Author

Kelly covers visual arts in and around Washington, DC for DCist and is editor of Crafting a Green World. Kelly has also been published by Bust Magazine and you can find her byline at Indie Fixx and Etsy’s Storque and has taught in Etsy’s virtual lab on the topic of green crafting. Kelly helps organize Crafty Bastards: Arts and Crafts Fair, one of the largest indie craft fairs on the east coast and has served on the Craft Bastard’s jury since 2007. Kelly is also co-founder of Hello Craft a nonprofit trade association dedicated to the advancement of independent crafters and the handmade movement. Kelly resides in Washington, D.C. and believes that handmade will save the world.



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