Natural Dye Batik Class

To protect our staff and customers from Coronavirus, we are not offering any batik classes until further notice. We apologise for any inconvenience.

Time: 9.00—13.30, Monday—Friday

Included: This half-day class offers a hands-on experience of batik making and indigo dyeing, as well as a unique insight into the botany, dye processes and practice of Indonesia’s textile traditions. The class includes a delicious home-cooked vegetarian lunch.

  • During a walk through the dye plant botanical garden, you will learn about the plants used by traditional weavers across Indonesia to make natural dyes.
  • During the class you will be taught to use the traditional batik tools of canting (drawing pen) and cap (stamps) using wax to create resist designs on cotton.
  • After you create your wax design you will apply natural indigo to create your patterns and learn how the indigo dye is made from the plants in the garden.
  • Threads of Life only uses sustainably sourced dyes either from our own gardens or from communities that are sustainably harvesting dye plants.
  • A delicious prepared freshly lunch is included and will be served while your piece is having its wax removed and being dried.

Age Limit: This class is not appropriate for children under the age of 12 years old.

Class Location: The class is held at the Threads of Life natural dye studio and botanical garden, 4 km from central Ubud.

Meet at 9 am at the Threads of Life gallery, Jalan Kajeng 24, Ubud: The class includes transfers before and after class between the Threads of Life gallery and the class location.

How to Book: This class may be booked via this website or in person at the Threads of Life gallery, Jalan Kajeng 24, Ubud. In both cases, payment in advance is required to secure your place.

Problems booking online within Indonesia: If you experience a declined transaction while trying to book a class when you are in Bali, it might be because the server you are using drops its onward connection to the credit card processor. This problem can be solved by accessing the internet from a different server. For example, if the transaction is declined when you try to book through your hotel’s WiFi, try again from the restaurant you go to for lunch or dinner. If you still experience problems, we can take a manual booking via an email to and you can pay by credit card or cash at the class.

More details below calendar…

[The calendar is currently hidden until we are able to take bookings again.]

Kadek Meri Antari and Wayan Sumerta

The Teachers

This class is led by Kadek Meri Antari and Wayan Sumerta. As the host for this class, Meri draws on her knowledge of Indonesia’s textile traditions and Threads of Life’s field work to guide the class’s visits to the dye studio and dye plant botanical garden, and to introduce the traditional natural dyes of Indonesia. Wayan is a Balinese traditional painter in the Gaya Tebesaya sytle and an indigo dyer at the Threads of Life dye studio. Along with his abundant sense of humour and patient teaching, he brings his hand drawing and artistic composition skills to his work with batik, and his experience with indigo to the class’s dye work.

Mary and Wayan’s work is supported by Threads of Life’s master dyers, I Made Maduarta (Pung), I Komang Sujata (Komang) and I Wayan Sukadana. Since 2000, these Balinese have worked across the archipelago with natural dyers still making traditional textiles using ancestral recipes. These recipes change as the landscape changes – forests have been cleared at an alarming rate over the past 20 years – and would be lost without a deeper understanding of the dye processes that helps dyers adapt their practices. Pung, Komang and Wayan have performed hundreds of dye experiments, and also work with communities to develop the sustainable cultivation and harvesting of dye plants.

The Lunch

The homemade lunch offers a sample tasting of a Balinese-inspired nasi campur — with a medley of flavours, textures and colours, all fresh from nature — that complements the colours of our dye workshop. Healthy natural-coloured beverages (tonics) will also be served. A vegetarian option is always available, but please let us know in advance if you have any food allergies we should know of.

The dye plant botanical garden

Class Details

09.00 – 09.15 Participants meet at the Threads of Life Gallery in Ubud from where you will be driven 4 kilometres to the workshop location at the Threads of Life dye studio and dye plant botanical garden set in the beautiful grounds of the Umajati Retreat in Petulu, Ubud (

09.30 – 12.30 The class starts with an introduction to Threads of Life and the work of the natural dye studio, with a guided walk around the dye plant garden and an introduction to the traditional natural dyes of Indonesia. After instruction in how to batik, you will create the first part of your personal batik design on a 50×50 cm piece of cotton. You will then apply indigo dye to your personal batik and, while you are waiting for cloth to dry, there will be a demonstration of making indigo dye with leaves harvested from the garden. There will then be time to apply another layer of batik wax to your design before a second round of indigo dyeing generates two-shades of blue on your final piece.

12.30 – 13.00 Lunch is served while staff remove the batik wax from your piece.

13.15 – 13.30 After the class you will be driven from Petulu back to the Ubud Palace at the crossroads in the centre of Ubud.