In 2001, Samantha attended her first primitive skills gathering and began to learn about the art of natural dying. She became enamored with this process and starting playing with the dyes on wool and other fabrics. She met Jill in 2003 and shared what she had discovered during a sisterly crafting day. This led us to consider what kinds of wearable items we would be able to dye with these gorgeous colors and, with our mutual love of fasion and fit, we chose to try dyeing clothing. Not surpisingly, we found a lack of great fitting, sustainably made clothing or clothing "blanks" available, so we chose to design and pattern our own blank garments, using exclusively organic fabrics.
Our timeless and basic organic fiber clothing designs have now become a staple of our art as well as our natural dye process. Each Tinctoria design is sewn in it's undyed natural state using our exclusive patterns and sizing.
We then hand dye each piece in our dye studio using materials extracted from trees, roots, plants, and insects. Many of our hand crafted colors take up to 60 minutes to develop and must be "cooked" in pots on the stove. This means that we are often dyeing no more than two of our garments at any time! Some colors, such as indigo, have a very different process and do not involve heat at all. Indigo dye craft involves dipping each garment into a dye vat anywhere from 4-7 times to achieve full depth of color with time to oxidize in between each hand dip.