Mustard Week I

Over the weekend, I was cleaning out my garage (just because it is SO FUN–ugh) and I found an entire garbage bag filled with mustard weed flowers that I had harvested in the spring.  There is a gigantic empty lot near my place that gets covered in beautiful yellow mustard weed flowers every year. And then, when the flowers are at their peak, the city comes and mows them all down.  🙁

So this year, I decided to harvest some of the flowers and use them for…something (remember my “about” page where I said I hoard stuff?).  When I found the bagful on Sunday, I knew I had my dye for the week.  YAY!

So without further ado, here is my first attempt.  I employed a traditional arashi method using the mustard weed mixture.  Then I overdyed this with a combo of dried lavender and misc green leaves from my backyard trees, using itajime to get the triangular areas (if you want more info on these methods, see my “shibori primer” pages here).

Akashi on cotton with mustard weed, lavender, and leaves
Arashi on cotton with mustard weed, lavender, and leaves
Mustard weed arashi detail
Mustard weed arashi detail


Published by

Brett Barker

Brett Barker is a painter, textile artist, art/design instructor, and writer whose career spans more than 25 years. Originally from New Mexico, she now resides in Redondo Beach, California. She has taught fine art, artistic design, and textile design to numerous individuals, art guilds, and organizations throughout the U.S. She has a Master's Degree in Art Education from the University of Nebraska. Her artwork sells throughout the U.S. and is available on her website, She is currently undertaking a year-long investigation of Japanese shibori dyeing that will culminate in a trip to Japan to study under a master shibori artist in September of 2016. Her shibori blog can be found at Her surface and textile designs can be found at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *