May 31, 2023

Why I Started Painting Plants (It May Surprise You!) – Rebecca Desnos

I moved house a few weeks ago and have organized a lot of urgent home improvement tasks.

What do home decorating and natural painting have in common?

A lot if you ask me.

Have I ever told you why I started painting with plants?

This is actually why I wanted to create my own non-toxic, healthy fabrics.

This is the focus coloring books I wrote and why I started using it soy milk as a pre-treatment on fabric. I stopped using aluminum acetate after my first baby was born over 8 years ago. I share this in my first book Botanical Color at Your Fingertips.

My love for color started as a teenager when I dyed clothes with the dye bags you add to the washing machine (have you ever used them?!). Later, I would buy second-hand men’s shirts and turn them into dresses and skirts. It was around this time that I became interested in the composition of fabrics and ingredients in cleaning and skin care products.

At some point in my 20s I felt bad for a few weeks after having my coat dry cleaned and wearing it daily, but back then that sort of thing wasn’t talked about.

About 10 years ago, a turning point came when I read a book called Killer Clothes.

Order: Book Depository / UK Amazon / Amazon USA *Affiliate links – I earn a small commission if you make a purchase through these links.

Why I Started Painting Plants It May Surprise You –

In Killer Outfits (affiliate link) I learned how seemingly innocent materials can endanger our health. It connected a lot of dots and was a huge awakening moment for me. However, we won’t get into the details now because we don’t need a worry in the world right now, do we?! When you’re ready for it, it’s an interesting read.

My main point was that I wanted to make my own healthy clothes and fabric.

Plant dyes seemed like the perfect choice and I’ve been wanting to experiment with them for years.

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So what do home decor and natural paints have in common?

Home renovations can be difficult because many products and materials are toxic. One easy transition is paint; non-toxic, VOC-free paint is now ready. My favorite UK paint company is Lakeland.

Back to natural dyes: my goal has always been to create healthy fabric using safe ingredients. Along the way, I fell in love with the rainbow of colors.

If you are thinking of taking up botanical painting, then my books will guide you in a very simple, gentle way. Botanical Color at Your Fingertips is the best to start with.

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So how – why did you start dyeing naturally? Or other crafts you love?

Dye Experiments
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