When we started Soluna Collective, we were drawn to the beauty of natural dyes; the authentic colors, traditional techniques and environmental benefits.
"We want to paint the world naturally" - Sonal Baid
WHAT ARE NATURAL DYES?
Natural dyes are colorants derived from plants and minerals that are found on the earth. A simple stone, leaf or root can be used to create vivid colors. At Soluna Collective, we use indigo, madder, turmeric, harda, sea salt, haritaki and soapnut.
Natural dyes have been around since the bronze age. They were considered a luxury good that only the elite could afford. Before the invention of synthetic dyes in 1859, natural dyes were the only source of color for dyeing. Today, natural dyes only account for 1% of the dyed fabric market [Saxena, Raja 2014].
OUR NATURAL DYES?
We believe environmental responsibility is a duty, not a choice.
At Soluna Collective, we teamed up with modern natural dyers in India who focus on environmentally friendly dyeing techniques. All ingredients used in our natural dyes are safe for the environment and 100% biodegradable. Over 95% of all ingredients used are derived from renewable resources and most ingredients are foraged near our factory in Ahmedabad.
Our natural dyes are created in a closed looped production process where all solid waste is composted and all liquid waste is used as irrigation for future crops.
The true beauty of our natural dyes come from the ingredients. Only naturally occurring plants and minerals are used to create the dye. The natural dye process eliminates the need for harmful toxins which are used many conventional dyeing processes. This not only saves the environment but benefits the artisans who make our natural dyes, as they are not exposed to dangerous toxic chemicals.
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Scouring & Bleaching
|Minerals and salts
|Contains known carcinogens and toxic chemicals
|Elimination of harmful chemicals
|Plants, fruits, seeds, flowers, roots, etc..
|Chemical fixers and heavy metals
|Low-Impact fixers. No heavy metals
|Minerals and flowers
|Restricted use of finishing agents.
|Chemical treatment or dumping in local waterways.
|Waste can be used as manure
Being able to pinpoint the chemicals or ingredients used in a dyeing process can be tricky. For conventional and low-impact dyes, the chemical makeup is proprietary and most companies do not publicly share this information. Natural dyes overcome that hurdle. We know every ingredient used in our natural dyes and we provide a list on every product page. Eco-design starts with transparency!
All natural dyes are GOTS certified.
Some natural dyes need a mordant to fix or adhere to the fabric. A common mordant for Indigo is alum and without alum, Indigo will not properly fix to the fabric. Mordants also sadden (darken) or brighten colors. A color like black or light green is impossible to achieve without a mordant.
Many critics of natural dyes argue that using of a mordant makes the natural dyeing process harmful. However, they rarely clarify the distinction between harmful and safe mordants. Heavy metal mordants such as; copper, tin and chromium are dangerous to the dyer and environment. While other mordants such as sea salt, alum, iron and harda are not.
At Soluna Collective, we use GOTS certified natural dyes that contain no harmful heavy metal mordants. For precaution, our dyers always use protective gear and work in a safe/sanitary environment. For more information about mordants please visit our mordants page.
Our goal is to be the leading source of information regarding eco design and ethically made goods. We believe the ancient dyeing technique of natural dyes can be modernized, and play a vital role in overcoming environmental degradation in the world of design. We pledge to be a leading force in that discussion and bring you along for the journey!