Become one with the Earth; Stay grounded, be grateful, and respectful towards nature. These are the first steps.
Collecting Plant Material
Melba shows her love and cares for the Earth through the exclusive use of natural colours to dye her fabrics. She knows that the leaves on the ground after a windy day and in the fruits and vegetables from her garden are gifts of nature. If not grown locally, she sustainable sources her plant materials from abroad.
Preparing the fabric
As she creates the natural dye, she also prepares the fabrics to properly attach the natural hues. This process is known as mordanting. Mordant is a metal salt that is used to fix a dye in the fibre. There are various types of mordants. Melba uses iron, alum, and tannins from plants.
Melba creates marks using different techniques. Sometimes she hand paints with earth minerals, tannins, or natural dyes. Other times she creates botanical prints with watercolor effects by adding extra water in the process. The possibilities are endless as she continues experimenting and growing in her craft, allowing designs to take shape through her hands.