Sep. 19th, 2011

aurora4242: (Default)
I've been thrilled with the results of my dye experimentation this season, using what's available right outside the door and adding it as color into my fibers. Flowers, whole plant tops and fibers simmering away on the stove.



Growing marigolds this season was abundantly successful, and I'm working on another dyebath full of flowers right now as I type this, and one of purple basil as well.



Kind of like making really strong flower tea. I've also been amazed by the stages in the process, especially the way the colors change between the dye liquid and the color that actually ends up in the fiber at the end.



This is the raw fiber, laid out in the bottom of an enamel roasting pan, with marigold poured at one end, coffee drizzled in the middle and tansy on the other side. It gets put into the oven and baked for an hour or two to set the color so the fiber is minimally handled. I was amazed by the results with this batch, as the acidity from the coffee changed the ph and made the colors pop.

The fibers were dried on a rack and braided after they were thoroughly dry.



From left to right, bottom to top, the fiber braids are merino wool, the first dyed with marigold, tansy and coffee, the middle braid is marigold and tansy, the top braid is all tansy and the yarn draped across them is handspun 2-ply VT domestic wool dyed with marigold.

All fibers were mordanted with alum purchased at Southern New England Spice Company, using recipes from Wild Color by Jenny Dean.

Looking forward to turning these fibers into some amazing yarn..

Later.

-Me.

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