What is indigo dye?

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The only natural blue pigment produced in nature.

Indigo dye is made from the fermented leaves of a flowering shrub that grows in many warm, humid climates around the world. It was discovered independently across the globe, the oldest surviving artifact coloured with natural indigo was found in Peru and dates to over 6000 years old. Techniques, dye preparation, and patterns vary widely across cultures and produce distinctive blue patterned textiles, and add to the rich visual culturally history and textile industries throughout the world. If you’re curious, search images of African mud cloth, Japanese shibori, Indian blockprinting, and Balinese batik – this will give you a snapshot of the beautiful techniques and patterns.

Indigo is among the oldest dyes to be used for textile dyeing and printing, in modern times it is most commonly known for dyeing blue jeans.

Learn more about indigo’s rich history and unique chemical attributes.