The Fabric of the Land

Dates: Sept 3 - Sept 7,  2018 (mon - fri)

Location: Elphin near Ullapool

Course Places : Full

Price : £410

Book Here 



This course is steeped, quite literally, in the slow and ancient processes of marking cloth through the combined use of time and found materials.  

The week starts with a walk in the geologically diverse area around my home, which sits in the North West Highlands Geopark.  We will collect small amounts of materials suitable for making into pigments with which, later in the week, we will mono-print onto recycled cotton fabric, making images inspired by the glorious mountainous landscape of this area.  Thereafter, we will gently bounce between the various stages of the processes of eco-printing onto cotton with plants, dyeing cloth and threads using natural dyes and also printing with rust onto cotton using the discarded metal objects found in and around our house: remnants of the lives of earlier settlers in this old crofting township of Elphin, in Assynt.

This is a course that relies upon the passage of time for the best results, so it will be gentle in pace and will be an opportunity for textile artists and enthusiasts to experiment with materials and recipes and to explore their relationship with the land in a most tactile and direct way.  The intention is that each participant will leave with a hand-bound recipe book of sample fabrics and useful methods for dyeing and printing cloth in a natural way.

I hope to run a follow-up course in 2019 – Fabric of the Land (Part 2) – which will be a guided course in using these methods to produce a finished piece of stitched work.


All materials, refreshments and cooked lunches are included in the price.




Please click on an image to see the full picture.





Much of the attraction of this area of the country is the wildness it has retained as a result of the limited impact of human habitation.  Of course, this means that there are fewer choices of accommodation for the intrepid visitor, but there are still a wide number of options, many of which can be found on the Accommodation links page.

To read about an innovative community partnership approach to preserving and improving this landscape for the benefit of all, have a look at Coigach and Assynt Living Landscapes. To find out about the fascinating geology of this area go to North West Highland Geopark.


Email :    Tel : 01854 666279,   Postal Address : Jan Kilpatrick, Cul Mor, Elphin, By Lairg, Sutherland, IV274HH.  
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