Ayurvastra – The Fabric of Yoga: A creative retreat exploring sustainable clothing as spiritual practice

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AYURVASTRA - The Fabric of Yoga: A creative retreat exploring sustainable clothing as spiritual practise

AYURVASTRA – The Fabric of Yoga: A creative retreat exploring sustainable clothing as spiritual practise

Join yoga teacher and textile artist, Justine Aldersey-Williams for a blissful weekend of creative spiritual practice combining yoga, meditation, chanting and textiles in beautiful Snowdonia next summer.

Ayurvastra is a term used to describe clothing infused with plant colour for its healing and therapeutic properties. ‘Ayur’ means ‘life’ and ‘vastra’ translates as ‘dress’ or ‘garment’.

Justine will guide you through the ancient process of patterning and naturally dyeing your yoga clothing using locally foraged plant dyes. The countryside surrounding our retreat centre is a wonderful store cupboard of hidden colour just waiting to be released and worn.

The act of wandering, identifying, gathering and harvesting these natural dyes which are often renowned for their healing properties, re-connects you with the therapeutic power of nature. Infusing your ‘second skin’ with unique plant colour medicine creates a powerfully talismanic memento of this magical time and place.

You will discover the fascinating history of natural dyeing, experience the alchemy of an organic indigo dye vat, try ancient ‘Shibori’ patterning techniques, create ‘eco-prints’ of flowers and leaves and engage with mindful mantra embroidery.

Once created, you will energetically charge your garments during yoga, chanting and meditation practise, making the act of wearing them a part of your sadhana.

You are welcome to upcycle and revive old garments or purchase ethically made, organic yoga clothes available from us nearer the time.

The event offers the perfect blend of creative play and yogic practise. There will be yoga asana sessions, yoga nidras, a kirtan evening and opportunities to meditate. You will have free time to fully immerse yourself in the inspiring surroundings and will leave with your own spiritually charged yoga clothing.

beautiful itajime sekka shibori T shirt dress dyed in organic indigo


When: Friday 1st June - Sunday 3rd June 2018

Where: Trigonos, Nantlle, Snowdonia, North Wales

Fee: Twin Ensuite = £375 Single Ensuite = £395 BEFORE 01/03/18 OR Twin Ensuite = £415 Single Ensuite = £435 AFTER 01/03/18 N.B. ONLY 12 PLACES AVAILABLE. Rooms choice subject to availability with those booking soonest getting the best choice.

TO BOOK: To secure your place immediately book online (this will incur eventbrite booking fees) OR complete our contact form stating which event you'd like to book and we will send you details of how to pay via either direct bank transfer or cheque

Trigonos retreat centre in the Nantlle Valley, Snowdonia

About the venue...

Trigonos is a beautifully quiet retreat centre situated in Dyffryn Nantlle (the Nantlle Valley) in the Snowdonia National Park, halfway between the coast and Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales.

They provide both single and twin shared rooms which are subject to availability so those who book soonest have the best choice.

During your stay delicious vegetarian food and refreshments will be included.

Trigonos retreat centre in the Nantlle Valley, Snowdonia

More about Ayurvastra...

Yoga is about reverence

Any experienced yoga practitioner will agree that yoga isn’t just a healthy form of mind/body exercise. With time, yoga encourages a deep reverence for ALL life which impacts the choices we make.

Having developed more compassion for all living creatures, questions about the food we eat, the clothes we wear and the effects our consumption has on the planet begin to emerge.

Yoga isn’t about expensive, designer leggings

We sometimes look to gurus for inspiration on how to live and although the West has some famous yogis with slick branding and clothing sponsorship deals, in the East gurus prefer to tread lightly following age-old traditions when it comes to what they wear.

Far from slinging on a pair of designer lycra leggings, yogis in India are often seen wearing ‘Saffron robes’ and whilst the image has become iconic, few of us have probably considered why.

Is your clothing lowering your vibration?

Ayurvastra is a little known branch of the Indian ‘science of living’ Ayurveda concerned with the use of clothing as a healing tool. If you consider that our clothing carries the stories of those who created it, the provenance of cloth can impart either helpful or detrimental effects.

From the chemicals used to control pests during cotton growing to the working conditions of the people who stitched your garments together, cloth carries physical and energetic pollution when produced in an unconscious way.

The fashion industry is currently the second biggest polluter on the planet with a terrible human rights record so when we buy clothing produced that way we not only endorse cruelty to both humans and the planet but also wear the vibration of suffering.

But what other choices do we have?

We may not be able to solve this worldwide problem but we can make gradual improvements in the choices we make.

Your clothing can be a sacred element in your yoga practice

Ayurvastra involves challenging the mass consumption required by the fashion industry by empowering individuals with the knowledge to create, colour and maintain their own lifelong garments infused with sacred prana (life force energy.) Cloth is sourced from sustainable, ethical producers before being infused with colour derived from plants.

The ancient craft of natural fabric dyeing

Natural fabric dyeing is a heritage craft almost extinguished by the Industrial Revolution when synthesised colour was discovered. Prior to this humans better understood the  vibrant consciousness of plants, knowing that their living colour, taste and medicinal properties could be beneficial.

In this era of increased ecological awareness, natural fabric dyeing is experiencing a renaissance that could reduce both our rate of clothing consumption and the toxicity of its production methods and for yoga practitioners, Ayurvastra is a way to peacefully protest whilst advocating for sustainable clothing.