How to Dye Fabric and other Inspirations from Quilting Arts

Hand-dyed fabric by Candy Glendening

I’ve been a faithful reader of Quilting Arts Magazine for many years. Each new issue fills me with anticipation as the glossy cover arrives in the office (it used to arrive in my mailbox, just a perk of being a part of the Quilting Arts team!). Every magazine is chock full of new techniques with helpful instructions such as how to dye fabric, mono printing, finishing advice—and more, personal artist stories, and of course, art.

“Seas the Day” by Sandi Bond

“Seas the Day” • Sandi Bond • From the ‘Words of Wisdom’ Reader Challenge

The first section I always hunt for is the Reader Challenge gallery. Its so inspiring to see all the work and effort inspired by the challenges we set! Each reader interprets the challenge in unique ways, often incorporating skills they’ve read about in the magazine!

Susan Purney Mark teaches us how to dye fabric in nuetrals

Vintage damask linen hand-dyed by Susan Purney Mark

Another of my favorite aspects of the magazines is learning new techniques and immersing myself in different artists’ methods. I love hand-dyed fabric and Quilting Arts has so many articles to help me dye fabric! I really enjoyed an in-depth series by Susan Purney Mark and her processes for dyeing neutrals. Not only are her instructions on how to dye fabric clear and concise, she really prods the underlying composition of tones that make up different hues and how to achieve exact results in your own dyeing. I had never thought too deeply about the colors that make up a deep, deep black, but Susan’s article opened a whole new window of possibilities for experimentation for me.


Hand-dyed fabric by Candy Glendening

Hand-dyed fabric by Candy Glendening


Candy Glendening is another fantastic fabric dyer, with a scientific background. Her explanations on how to dye fabric and why it works really brought another dimension to hand-dyed fabrics for me. Did you know there are over 60 articles that discuss how to dye fabric in Quilting Arts? I use the cumulative article index to help search for these and other articles. So many of our contributors and readers have diverse backgrounds outside of art quilting and their expertise informs and educates me.

Art quilts from the pages of Quilting Arts Magazine

Right: “Leaf Stack #25” • Lisa Flowers Ross Photo by Evermore Prints. Left: “Sisters” • Leni Levenson Wiener Photo courtesy of the artist.

Quilting Arts is a wonderful resource for studying master artists and their work. From profiles of amazing abstract creators like Lisa Flowers Ross to thought-provoking conversations with figure artist Leni Levenson Wiener, there is an art quilt icon to inspire everyone hidden in the pages of each issue. I also love the featured galleries. I am restricted in the number of in-person quilt shows I can attend by time and geography, but through Quilting Arts I get to see an amazing array of art quilts from around the world.

I hope you enjoy this publication as much as I do!


Want to learn how to dye fabric? Don’t miss these tutorials!

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