About the Symposium
Novices and experienced mushroom dyers alike will enjoy the camaraderie and community of a week-long conference with dyeing and crafting workshops, lectures, field trips, and unstructured craft time.
Forage for local dye mushrooms. Learn new dye techniques and innovative fiber crafts to showcase the radiant beauty of mushrooms for color. Admire the gallery of work from masterful artists who blend fungi with fiber. Purchase dye mushrooms, expertly dyed wool, undyed local fiber, and heirloom-quality mushroom-dyed handicrafts. Socialize with an international group of enthusiastic fungus and fiber crafters as we share and expand our collective knowledge, ensuring it is passed on to future generations.
History of the IFFS
Every two years, since the First International Mushroom Dye Exhibit in 1980, textile and fiber artists have gathered from all over the world to exhibit their mushroom dyed works of fiber art, exchange new ideas and teach workshops in dyes, paper-making and pigments made from fungi. These exhibits and symposia came to be known as the International Fungi and Fibre Symposia and are hosted by different groups of textile artists around the world, under the sponsorship of the International Fungi & Fibre Federation (IFFF). Read more here.
Typical daily schedule
|8am - 9am||Breakfast in the Commons|
|9am - noon||Morning Dye Classes or Forays|
|noon - 1pm||Lunch in the Commons|
|1pm - 4pm||Afternoon Dye or Craft Classes & Interactive Presentations|
|4:30pm - 5pm||Fungi and Fibre Boutique and Gallery|
|5pm - 6pm||Short Lectures|
|6pm - 7:30pm||Dinner in the Commons|
|7:30pm - 8pm||Fungi and Fibre Boutique and Gallery|
|8pm - 9:30pm||Announcements and Speaker|
Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner are included in the Symposium fee and will be served in the Fort Worden Commons. Delicious meals are crafted from seasonal ingredients to reflect the Pacific Northwest.
Fort Worden State Park
Port Townsend, Washington, USA
Fort Worden was originally designed as a military base to defend the Puget Sound when most military conquests were carried out by sea. Today it's a state park that spans 2 miles of shoreline with historic buildings, walking trails, and views of the Olympic and Cascade Mountains, and the San Juan Islands.
Located a couple of miles from historic downtown Port Townsend, shopping, restaurants, and sightseeing opportunities (and 2 yarn stores) are just minutes away.
Port Townsend is a 2-3 hour car drive from Seattle or SeaTac (the International Airport). There are several routes you can take to get to Port Townsend - some use bridges and some use ferry boats, but all are beautiful. Daily public transportation is available from both SeaTac Airport and Seattle to Port Townsend. The simplest option is booking a seat on the Greyhound Bus, which leaves from Downtown Seattle twice each day.
More to see
The entire Seattle area is built around the Puget Sound, a salt water inlet from the Pacific Ocean, with many islands and peninsulas. We highly recommend planning several days before or after the Symposium to explore the fungi rich forests of Mount Rainier, the coastal forests of the Olympic Peninsula, windswept Whidbey Island, or any of the beautiful San Juan Islands, which are known for whale watching. You will be visiting at the height of mushroom season.
Brought to you by...
Alissa Allen (left)
Alissa is the founder of Mycopigments, and has been sharing her passion for mushroom and lichen dyes and collaborating with other dyers for over 15 years. She has written articles for the Fibershed blog, Fungi Magazine, and her website, and created two active discussion groups: Mushroom and Lichen Dyers United and the Mushroom Dyers Trading Post. She is dedicated to furthering the art and science of dyeing through community engagement, open discussion, and friendly encouragement. Her focus is studying regional mycoflora and using their colorful dyes to entice people to pay closer attention to the role fungi play in our lives. Follow her at @mycopigments.
Tess Barlow (right)
Tess is a mom of two young boys. Her lifelong passion for crafting and fiber arts combined perfectly with her studies in mycology when she discovered mushroom dyes. Inspired by Alissa Allen's enthusiasm at the local mushroom club, Tess has been experimenting with mushroom dyes for about 10 years. After attending her first IFFS in Norway in 2018, she is thrilled to join our team in developing a dynamic agenda of dye and craft classes that convey the unparalleled beauty of mushroom dyes. Follow Tess @hericium2.0
Julie Beeler (below)
Julie is a designer, artist, and educator living at the base of a volcano in Trout Lake, WA where she forages for mushrooms and runs her fresh-cut color flower farm, Bloom & Dye. Her textile work is bound up in the landscape; every thread is infused with earthly energy as she gently simmers Mother Nature to unlock her colors. She is a member of the Oregon Mycological Society and has been experimenting with the unpredictability of mushroom dyes since discovering Miriam Rice’s out of print book Mushrooms for Color. At her first IFFS in Norway in 2018 she met Alissa and Tess and is excited to be a member of the planning committee. Follow Julie @unidola and @bloomanddye.