Noble Artist Feature: The Barefoot Dyer

Meet the Austin-based artist and educator Jamie Young of @thebarefootdyer — specializing in natural dye education that honors nature and exploration while prioritizing inclusivity and community building.

We teamed up with Jamie this month to have her floral imprint our best-selling Utility Suit for a special giveaway (!!!) and chat about her journey as an artist and business owner.
Jamie wearing our Oat Milk Utility Suit.

How and when did you first fall in love with the art of natural dying? I feel like my journey into the world of natural dyeing started in childhood. Growing up, my parents instilled in me a deep love for nature. I grew up in a tiny house in the middle of nowhere. My siblings and I spent more time outdoors than most kids. My dad, an environmental scientist and botanist, and my mom, a passionate gardener, instilled a love for nature within me and taught me the importance of being a steward of the land at a young age. I can vividly recall sitting in the garden with my mom, smushing flowers onto wood and rocks, marveling at the way the colors transferred. Little did I know that these playful moments would lay the foundation for my future profession.

In college, I worked with synthetic dyes to create tie-dye pieces for myself, friends, and family. I stumbled across an article on indigenous people working with natural dyes in my now-husband's (then-boyfriend's) anthropology textbook and was immediately fascinated. I began experimenting with local dye plants, fell in love with the process and never looked back.From flowers to avocado pits you use countless different organic elements in your dye process— do you have a personal favorite? Choosing a favorite is always so difficult. Lately, I've developed a deep love for creating surface designs with leaves that grow locally to me. There's something almost meditative about carefully arranging them, envisioning how they'll imprint on the fabric, and anticipating the colors they will reveal.A big part of your process is focused around sustainability, do you have any advice for those who are aiming to create more sustainable habits in their day to day lives? I think it’s important to keep in mind that sustainable living varies from person to person, and it can be as straightforward as turning off lights in unoccupied rooms, bringing a reusable cup to your favorite coffee shop, unplugging devices when they're not in use, or even harvesting rainwater for your plants. These seemingly basic actions can have a significant impact. It's easy to overlook the fact that every purchase we make is essentially a vote for the world we want to see. Personally, I make an effort to support local farms, artisans, and small businesses as much as I can.

Fall is in the air, so what are you reading or listening to that have you feeling inspired through this season? As a work-at-home parent, finding moments to play is essential. It recharges me, lifts my spirits, and sparks my creativity. My version of play often involves indulging in a few precious minutes of fiction reading or listening (thank goodness for audio books). After spending so much time with scientific journals and texts for work, fiction feels like a little treat. Recently, I devoured "Happy Place" by Emily Henry. I love everything she writes! Currently, I'm immersed in "The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue," by V. E. Schwab and it’s been a great read so far. GIVEAWAY!

Want to win a floral printed Utility Suit of your own? One lucky winner will win a Utility Suit of your choice dyed by Jamie herself, featuring floral dye imprints on the front collar and pockets of our best-selling 100% organic canvas suit. Giveaway closes Friday, October 13th @ 11:59pm PST.



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