My Creative Workbook

Christine de Beer - effortless floral craftsman

Stain wooden skewers with natural dye

Using fruit, berries, flowers and grasses to naturally stain design details for floral art relies on the same techniques as using paint or any other dye.

Use fruit, flowers, leaves and spices to create a natural dye.

All the colours can be mixed to create the exact colour you want.

You can either boil the plant material to create a dye bath or crush or grate it to make a dye rub.

For stronger colours allow the items to soak longer in the dye bath.

Natural wood stain for floral art designs

For my skewers I needed a yellowish green stain, but not a solid colour, so I soaked an onion skin (for the yellow) in a very weak solution of Spinach water (green water left over after you cooked spinach).

Stain the skewers green

Paint the skewers with the dye and set aside to dry.

But if I wanted:

Strawberry pink

Strawberry pink.

Crush the ripe strawberries and soak the skewers. Set aside to dry.

Dark red

For a red stain use Raspberries.

For a darker red stain use Raspberries.

Mud brown

Mud brown.

Use left-over Coffee grinds to rub or soak the skewers in. The longer you steep the skewer the darker the colour.

Grass green

Grass green

The water left over from cooked spinach works really great as a natural green dye but you can also use grass (for a more yellowish green) or green herbs such as parsley (emerald green) or mint (for a camouflage green)

Brightest yellow

Brightest yellow

Zest a lemon or an orange to rub the skewer with. It also smells great!


For a orange stain use grated carrot.

For a orange stain use grated carrot.



Rub the skewers with African violet petals. For a fruit dye you can also try grapes.


For a blue stain use Blueberries

For a blue stain use Blueberries

Vibrant blue purple

For a violet use blackberries.

For a vibrant blue purple use blackberries or Mulberries

Red tea

Natural Red dye.

I use Rooibos tea for a natural reddish tint. If I am staining a large surface I use the entire teabag as a brush. For a more vibrant red you can use beetroot, rose-hips or red onions

Shades of red and orange, using spices

Natural dyes Shades of red and orange using spices.

Mix spices into a paste as a dye-rub. Try paprika and red pepper for a vibrant red and curry powder or turmeric for a more yellow to orange stain.

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