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Gall Nuts – Oak Apple


These Gall Nuts are the result of a Gall Wasp nesting in an oak leaf. The Gall Nut grows around the egg and protects it until it hatches. The larva then escapes through a little hole which is still visible in the Gall Nuts.
Gallnuts can be used to dye grey, bronze and brown colours.

Gallnuts are available in packages of approximately 100 grams, 500 grams or 1 kilo.
This product is packaged in a compostable bag produced in the Netherlands.

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SKU: MV5441.30X Tags: , , ,


Gallnuts (Cynips gallae tinctoria) Galnoten (NL)
Family: Cynipidae
Dye: Grey-brown
Gallnuts can be used as a dye and a mordant.

When a gall wasp lays its eggs in an oak leaf, the leaf wraps itself around the eggs in response and starts to proliferate. The leaf serves as a shelter and food for the larva. The gall nut grows into a hard ‘marble’ and when the larva has hatched, it disappears through the small hole in the gall nut.
The gallnut contains a lot of tannin, which is a mordant. Therefore, there is no need to stain before painting.
By combining gallnuts with, for example, iron sulphate and bluewood, it is possible to achieve black.
Gallnuts have been used to make ink since the late Middle Ages. For this, you need a binding agent, such as guar gum and Arabic gum.
Would you like to try this out? Then quickly go to the recipe on this page!

… have been used to make ink for centuries. In combination with iron sulphate, you achieve black ink.


Basic recipe for making ink.

– 50 grams of gallnuts
– 200 ml water
– a teaspoon of ferrous sulphate
– a teaspoon of guar gum
– a hammer or mortar and a sieve
– apron, gloves, old tea towel
– (glass) jars with lids

Step 1:
Place the gallnuts in an old tea towel and beat them into small pieces with a hammer and put them in a sealable jar with 200 ml water. Leave this in the window sill for a few days.

Step 2:
Add a teaspoon of ferrous sulphate, stir and seal again. You can now continue with step 3 or leave it in the window sill for a few more days.

Step 3:
Stir again and add a teaspoon of guar gum, use a strainer for this so there are no lumps. stir well et voilá, your homemade ink is ready!

MC tips:
1) Don’t forget your gloves 😉
2) You can add more guar gum so it becomes a paste with which you can paint!

Sustainable packaging

The packaging material we have selected for Oogst natural dyes is made out of agricultural wase.

It is compostable and complies to the EN13432 directives for compostability and is also DIN CERTCO certified.

The package material is suitable for the food industry and helps perserving the materials.

Oogst Natural Dye product philosophy

Tiring of quick-fix culture and instant gratification? Frustrated with the monotony of modern life? Are you yearning to make elegant and stylish products yourself?

Instead of falling victim to the ‘quick-fix’ mentality, take your time and create something relatively insignificant by today’s standards. Get back to nature with natural dyes.

The earth is our most precious resource. It provides everything we need, including the landscape in which we live, the food we eat, the air we breathe. It’s our foundation, grounding us in a steady rhythm of seasons. The fast pace of modern life has shifted what is considered valuable. What we need and even who we are has been redefined by a consumeristic society.

Let go of the impulsive convenience mindset. Break free from the urge to just consume. Create something new, make something on your own – using natural dyes – and reconnect yourself with nature. Discover the pleasure of Oogst natural dyes for yourself, getting back to basics with colours directly from nature.

There is something to be said about the process of creation. It is not only the final product that is important, but what led to its creation. We want you to experience how it feels to make something with your own two hands.

And why should that be complicated? The truth is that for hundreds of years before synthetic dyes came along, common folk were creating their own dyes.

We’re bringing back the lost art of natural dyeing. It’s easy to buy what you need at the stores just like everybody else, but when you dye your own projects you come away with something truly unique.

Explore the possibilities at Oogst.

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