fen

A Fen is a marsh or moor – the word in Old English is fenn: mud, dirt, moor, marsh – and the word has its origins in proto-Germanic. The Fens are an area in eastern England; originally wetlands, much of the area was drained for use as agricultural land. Parts of the Fens are now being restored. Dye-plants like woad, weld (gaude), meadowsweet, fennel and the evocatively named purple loosestrife grow in the Fens. Beauty product junkies who like BorgheseRead more

garance, indigo + gaude

Garance, indigo and gaude are words which refer to the colours produced by plant dyes used in traditional fabric dying. Garance produces a red dye, indigo a blue dye and gaude a yellow dye. So yes, it’s really just red, blue and yellow in fancy outfits, in the world of pre-19th century European fabric design. Garance refers to a red dye made from varieties of the Madder plant. Common Madder (Rubia tinctorum) was used extensively in French textile production. A commonRead more