Saturday, February 27, 2010

winter dye party pt. 10

Dandelion Dyes!

Seattle has seen some beautiful, sunny weather for February.
There were dandelions everywhere!
I really wanted to collect them for eating, but typically found them a little too close to roads and pollution (on my way to and from work).
So, I used them for dying.
If you look closely at a dandelion plant, there are 3 main colors: yellow petals, green leaves, and red/purple streaks at the base of leaves and stems.
I read online that technically you should be able to capture that red/purple color as dye.
I set up 2 dye baths: one with the yellow petals, and one with as many red/purple parts of the plant as I could manage.
I used alum and cream of tartar as mordants.
Here are my (surprising) results:

The dark color on left is from the yellow petals and the yellow dye is from the red parts of the plant. And I didn't mix them up!
(I suspect you need tin as mordant to obtain the red/purple, but i have deemed it too toxic a substance for my household).

Here is an update on Copper Penny Blue dyebath.
It's still going strong. Every few days I put in some more yarn for between 2-24 hours. In this photo, the light blue is from about 2 hours and the darker hues about 4. The green is from mushroom-dyed yellow yarn that I over-dyed with copper penny blue...I like it a lot!

1 comment:

wendy said...

Awesome! I hope you'll pardon my language when I say that you're a total badass.