Session 1: Forest Foraging and Mushroom Dyeing

Join us for a unique opportunity to walk into the Maine woods with mycologist Alissa Allen. Alissa has over twenty years of experience researching and dyeing with mushrooms and lichens. We will start with an informative presentation by Alissa and then get hands-on experience searching and picking mushrooms of our own. Students will learn to name and distinguish edible, non-edible and dye-producing fungi. Forest walks are followed by an all-day dyeing workshop, demonstrating how to extract different colors from the gathered mushrooms. to add natural color to thread, yarn and cloth.

Meals will be provided by Annmarie Ahearn of Salt Water Farm using fresh, local Maine ingredients. We will have the opportunity to dine together at her farm. Private dining experiences will be curated by other well-known chefs and restaurants including Belfast’s Chase’s Daily, Camden’s Long Grain and Rumline, and Rockport’s Seafolk.

Each evening we will gather together for our meal and stitch on a communal tablecloth. This project will bring us together at the end of the day and allow us to engage with each other and the craft that was originally a very communal act.

This retreat is set in beautiful Mid-coast Maine near Belfast.