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Dyeing Textiles with Bacteria

Feb 20 Through Feb 27 | Sun |
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2-part class:

Sunday, February 20, 10:00am - `1:00pm EDT

Sunday, February 27, 10:00am - 1 :00pm EDT

What’s the biggest dirty little secret of the fashion industry? Pollution. The textile dyeing and finishing industry is one of the most chemically intensive industries and the most significant pollutant of clean water after agriculture. Over 3600 textile dyes are manufactured in the industry today, and more than 8000 chemicals are used in textile manufacturing, including printing and dyeing.

Enter biodesign. The natural world is full of vibrant colors, and natural dyes have been experiencing a cultural come-back with our collective desire to live more sustainably and safely. But plants still need water, land and human resources to grow, and fuel to transport. We need a new (ancient) type of organism to collaborate with.

This workshop will help participants learn an alternative, sustainable, and water-conscious method of textile dyeing and printing using bacteria. Bacteria are highly diverse, producing a wide variety of colors. In addition, bacterial dyes use 430 times less water than synthetic dyes to dye a small T-shirt, and they can double in 20 minutes making it very cost-effective.

This class will be centered around the bright red pigment created by Serratia marcescens.

Participants will learn how to:

grow their own bacteria create vivid dyes with the bacteria dye their textiles and yarn in a safe and contained manner sterilize their textiles

Venue: Genspace NYC

132 32nd Street, Suite 108 Map