Today a Spinning groups Natural Dyeing Day at Eau Brink Studio was great fun.
We started with a talk about health and safety around hot liquids over coffee.
The discussion that followed included the natural dyeing process and how to use the different natural plant materials in their various forms. Crushed berries work better than whole berries, Dried materials need to be soaked over night, Fresh materials are far better if picked during a dry spell. Just to mention a few of the processes s discussed.
Whilst demonstrating how to use the materials by measuring out fleece, water and Weld. We looked at the different types of mordants and how they work.
I explained how vital it is to measure out your ingredients and document them so that you have a recipe for future use. With the recipe we discussed the need to document times your fleece is in the vat and what you liked and disliked about the eventual colours. Once the fleece is dried than a small sample is added to the notes. The trouble is remembering to do this while you are concentrating on your colours and not letting the pots boil dry.
Once the group were feeling a little confident they explored the different colours and then started to mix them to see what other colours can be made.
The day was exciting as nobody new what to expect or what colours will emerge.
What happens if you put fabric in the vats? Great question and answered by adding Egyptian Cotton to a Weld bath.
The colour stayed this vibrant even after rinsing.