Due to COVID-19, FTWG cancelled its 2022 Conference two months before it was scheduled to start. As a result, this workshop was not taught in 2022.

Khmer Hol & Indigo Dye

Skill Level


Required Skills:

  • No dyeing experience required. 
  • The yarns we dye will not be woven as they will be taken home wet.  You need the skill to warp and weave with the yarn once you are home.
  • The resist-dyed yarns can be woven as a plain weave if 3-harness weaving is not available to you.
  • Similarly dyed yarns can also be used in knitting

Class Length

  • 2.5 Days
  • Friday: 9 am to 12 pm, 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm
  • Saturday: 9 am to 12 pm, 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm
  • Sunday: 9 am to 12 pm


Khmer textiles are among the most intricate and beautiful silk Ikats in the world. This workshop focuses on learning the techniques used by Cambodian artist to create these 2/1 twills with patterned wefts. Working with natural fibers (tencel, cotton, silk, or wool) and indigo dye, yarns will be tied and dyed during the workshop. The yarns will not be woven during the workshop, they will be taken home wet. Khmer textile samples will be studied and participants taught to graph designs. After preliminary samples are made individually created designs will be tied.

A variety of bright colors and neutral colors may be used. Working with indigo on white, a range of blues will be achieved through repeated dipping. When bright colors are used, a different range of blended colors will be achieved.


Registration Fee $290 for FTWG members and $320 for all others.
Materials Fee $10

Materials Fee includes: dye, distilled water, resists for tying, graph paper, handouts, and warping peg use.

Students to Bring

  • A minimum of four ounces 10/2 tencel or other natural fiber for weft
  • A minimum of one pound of additional fiber for warp
  • Note: Tencel works beautifully and has a nice luster. Silk was used traditionally but is more expensive. Cotton is fine. Wool gives softer lines. 10/2 gives a nice amount of detail. You can choose to work with finer but not much heavier than 8/2.
  • Two C clamps to hold warping pegs or a frame for tying; students will receive specs for building a frame, if desired
  • Three different colors of pencils
  • Scissors
  • Plastic bags for carrying wet yarn home
  • Gloves
  • Apron
  • Safety glasses
  • Mask
  • Tags for labelling skeins

Instructor Bio

Barbara Cabral received her MA from the University of Akron researching the use of madder in Ohio coverlets. She has taught Contemporary Needle Arts at the University of Akron and in Tallin, Estonia, where she collected Estonian and traditional card-weaving textiles. She lectures on textile topics including Pictorial Needle Felting, Khmer Hol (Ikat), Natural Dyes, Sewing with Handwoven Fabric, Working with Lotus Fiber, and Estonian Knitting.

Since the early 1980s, her work has been exhibited in Ohio and in Florida. In 2020, she received 1st place in the HGA fashion show Seasons of the Smokies for a woven and needle-felted cloak. In 2022, her woven and needle-felted vest and hat were also included in the HGA Convergence fashion show. She now shares these award-winning techniques in workshops and lectures.

Raising silkworms since 2013 led her to travel to Thailand and Cambodia where she visited textile venues and met with weavers, dyers, golden silkworm farmers, and conservators. She continues to travel to Cambodia to study Khmer Hol (Ikat) and enjoys presenting workshops & lectures on Khmer weaving.


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