Shibori DIY Tutorial: Brighten Up with Natural Turmeric

Shibori DIY Tutorial: Brighten Up with Natural Turmeric 

Shibori binds, folds, twists, and compresses fabric to make a pattern by resisting dye. Read more about the history of Shibori here. Shibori patterns are most commonly created with Indigo, but you can use a wide variety of natural and synthetic pigments. In this tutorial, we will practice using natural turmeric. Turmeric has a strong staining power and can dye fabric in as little as 10 minutes.  

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Materials Needed:

1/4c Turmeric
1c Distilled Vinegar
2 gallons of water(or enough to cover the fabric)
Stainless Steel Pot
Tongs or a large spoon
Pre-Folded, 100% Natural Unbleached or White Fabric (learn folding methods here)
Heating Surface


Place the the turmeric and white vinegar, and water into the pot and bring it to a low boil.  The mixture needs to be hot, but not boiling for the dye to take to the fabric. Once your mixture is simmering, turn the heat down and prepare your fabric.

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Completely saturate the fabric with water and squeeze tightly to remove remove excess water.  Keep the fabric compressed.


Slowly place the wrung out fabric into the pot, making sure not to splash the hot water. 


stir the mixture often to make sue the dye takes evenly and the fabric does not get scourched against the bottom of the pot.


Gently pull the fabric out of the pot using tongs or a large spoon.

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Let the fabric cool down (about 30 minutes) then unwrap the fabric.


Rinse out the fabric twice with cold water to remove any excess pigment, then use a light detergent if desired. Finally, Hang your beautiful fabrics out to dry! 


Hand wash in cold water to preserve colors.  Colors may slightly dim over time since they are all natural.  Keeping fabrics out of the bright sun will help preserve the pigments longer.

To learn these folds and more, check out our shibori folding tutorial! To book a workshop, check out our calendar, or inquire about a private event here!