Member Online Masterclass Series: Creating Colour with Lauren MacDonald

Member Online Masterclass Series: Creating Colour with Lauren MacDonald Member Online Masterclass Series: Creating Colour with Lauren MacDonald Member Online Masterclass Series: Creating Colour with Lauren MacDonald

Tuesday 02 March 2021 11:00am - 12:30pm

Booking opens at 12pm on Tuesday 16th Feb

Book here from Tuesday 16th Feb at 12pm

Lovers of pigment can sign up for our new series of four masterclasses: Creating Colour with Lauren MacDonald. Using food waste, foraged organic matter, and spices we will transform textiles and paper with handmade dyes and inks. No experience or skill necessary, all welcome!

***Note: you must commit to all four masterclasses. Because of the specialist materials that this masterclass requires, and the anticipated popularity of this series, we ask that you do not book this series unless you can guarantee that you will attend every session. If you fail to attend any one session we will unfortunately have to revoke your Institute of Making membership.***

  • Week 1: Introduction - Tuesday 2nd March from 11am-11.30am

During a short introductory session by Lauren, you’ll learn how to prepare your fibres for the dye bath, and how to gather materials - foraging from your fridge, local park, or supermarket. To keep our hands busy while we talk, Lauren will take you through the process of making an iron mordant. 

  • Week 2: Dyes - Tuesday 9th March February from 11am-12.30pm

In this session the group will learn from Lauren how to prepare a dye bath with common food waste and learn physical resist techniques to create a variety of tie-dye patterns. At the end of the workshop, you’ll be shown how to dispose of the dye bath, with an option for making use of your left-over colour to create pigments in the following session. 

  • Week 3: Inks - Tuesday 16th March February from 11am-12.30pm

This session will start with the group's food waste dyeing show-and-tell, as we ogle each others' results from the week before. Then, you’ll learn a medieval recipe for making ink using oak galls, iron, and gum arabic. After that, you’ll have the chance to turn some of your dyes into pigments for painting. 

  • Week 4: Materials Library drawing and painting - Tuesday 23rd March February from 11am-12.15pm

In our final session, we will start with an introduction by Materials Librarian Sarah Wilkes and our Director Zoe Laughlin, after which Lauren will help you to prepare your pigments and inks for use. Then, Zoe will lead the drawing session itself so you can put your new homemade inks and pigments to the test.

To take part in these sessions you will need:

-       A computer or tablet with a working camera and mic.
-       Access to a stove or cooker.
-      You will also need to email your postal address to as we will post you a few specialist materials.

Lauren MacDonald is a multidisciplinary artist and designer. Her approach and aesthetic have been tempered through academic studies in Material Culture and Textile Science; vocational experience in the London fashion industry; and an ongoing obsession with materiality, form, and functionality. Her practice is textile-focussed and spans interaction design, installation, sculpture and two-dimensional stitched forms. 


Are you at UCL but not yet an Institute of Making member?

Just register as a member of the Institute of Making in order to book this workshop, our membership is free and open to all staff and students at UCL. Once registered, you will be able to book places on our online events and activities, and you will receive email notification of upcoming events and news.


Do you have specific access requirements?

We would like to make sure that everyone can join our online events and use our website as easily as possible. Please message us if you need any particular support or assistance while using our platforms, so we can ensure those. We are also always interested in feedback to help us improve access to our activities. Contact Sara on


Image credits: photographs provided by Lauren MacDonald, instagram @working_cloth  

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