Check out these sustainable and practical processes featuring Philippine textiles

Pantone Color Institute‘s selection of hues couldn’t be more fitting with this year’s current state. While we recuperate from the challenges of the past year, the color authority provides a hopeful view for the rest of 2021 with Ultimate Gray (Pantone 17-5104) and Illuminating (Pantone 13-0647).

“The union of an enduring Ultimate Gray with the vibrant yellow Illuminating expresses a message of positivity supported by fortitude,” says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. “Practical and rock but at the same time warming and optimistic, this is a color combination that gives us resilience and hope. We need to feel encouraged and uplifted; this is essential to the human spirit.”

In order to predict the prime tone(s), Pantone and its group of experts analyze trends, as well as lifestyle and socio-economic conditions. They also consider multiple industries and design worlds to come out with the best color(s) that will represent the now and the future. But unlike the institute’s forward looking concept, in the Philippines, the 2021 Colors of the Year can be traced back to its age-old natural dyeing culture.

In an Facebook post shared by the Department of Science and Technology’s Philippine Textile Research Institute (DOST-PTRI) and its NatDye Center,  Ultimate Gray and Illuminating colors can be achieved with ingredients commonly used for natural dyeing.

Talisay (terminalia catappa) is a plant rich with tannins that produce various shades of yellow. According to them, mixing the color with mineral mordant or ferrous sulfate can bring out black and gray colors. Thrives on beaches and sandy coasts, talisay’s leaves, roots, and fruits are also used for tanning leather.

Illuminating can be achieved using the yellow ginger (curcuma longa). Commonly used in natural dyeing, it has curcumoids, which is a potent source of yellow and orange tints in nature. The use of yellow ginger dye can be seen in the t’nalak works of the T’boli weavers in Lake Sebu, South Cotabato and the handwoven products in Batanes, to name a few.

From indigo and beige to old rose and purple, you can check out more of PTRI’s dyes developed from natural ingredients here. 

Source: Manila Bulletin (