Ancient knowledge regarding the process of dyeing fabrics using natural materials, until recently, was rapidly vanishing from indigenous Indonesian culture. Over the last 100 years, while weaving traditions continued, people preferred to use brightly colored synthetic wools and yarns bought in the market. Today, when indigenous artisan weave for their families, they still tend to use synthetic material, because it’s less time-consuming and offers much more intense shades of colour, such as deep blue, which is very popular in the personal clothing of indigenous artisan people. To them, brighter is better in their own clothing, which is one of the main reasons why natural dyes had nearly faded into history.
Dyeing is an art, which depends on personal colour preference, situation, size of the dyeing batch, etc. Techniques and materials required to achieve particular shades depend largely on the region and the materials available, as well as the education and experience of the dyer. At one time, most weavers would be well-aware of the natural processes and materials for dyeing. The popularity of convenient synthetics nearly resulted in a complete erasure of these skills from indigenous culture, and a whole generation came to lack this knowledge.