Simply stated, my holiday weekend has been a
long-awaited natural dyeing marathon. Woo-Hoo!
(French Marigolds, above, are now drying.
More on this later in the summer!)
Have a look at my weekend:
(and if you have any questions about natural dyeing, etc.
please leave a comment - I'd love to hear from you!)
My dear friend Vickie once gifted me a handful
It was destined for a big pot of Logwood.
Following Vickie's Romney was Cathy Sovocool's
squoooshy Alpaca yarn. Because the yarn went into
the second generation of the Logwood dye bath,
the result was paler than what I was hoping for.
So, I overdyed the Alpaca in Lac.
A closer look at a few more:
Vickie's white Romney dyed in Logwood (top right)
Foxwood's white Cormo roving dyed in Lac (middle)
Christine Johnson's black Romney dyed in
3rd generation Logwood (back)
I can't wait to dye again, and then knit and spin
all of these beautiful fibers!
Amidst the whirlwind of dye pots and fiber,
I realized that I know each Shepardess,
or have at least met her, and that by dyeing every thing
myself using only green dyes is all very satisfying.
(BTW, we grew those strawberries!)
Moving on to cotton, here are my Dad's old dress shirts.
The laundromat misspelled his name....
Pre-mordanting took all three days so I'll follow up
with dye results in a future post.
If you're unfamiliar with dyeing cellulose materials,
like cotton, the first step is to soak the cotton in
a tannin bath, and then an alum bath,
thus allowing the fiber to absorb the dye.
It sounds tedious, but gathering sumac early in
the morning to boil and make my own tannin solution
was kind of fun. Otherwise, the pre-mordanting process
was just many hours of soaking in one pot and then the next.
Between pots of pre-mordants and pots of dye,
some spinning took place. That lovely ball of natural white
wool is a gift from my dear friend Lara in Virginia.
Gorgeous weather, irresistible colors, fresh food from the garden -
what a great start to summer!
And at the end of each day there's Stanley, one cool cat.
Thanks for checking out my natural dye adventures.
Stay tuned for more as the summer unfolds!