Almost Done! Natural Dyeing

February 12th, 2011 by

Walnuts

Let these simmer until you reach a pretty dark concentrate

I ended up boiling these down three times to make the ratio of my concentrate to my water more even. It all depends on how dark of a brown you’re trying to reach. Walnut hulls are pretty potent, so you can keep boiling them down. I never reached a time where my water was fading…if that makes any sense.
Soak your fabric first (just to dampen) and then drop into the dye bath. 
I let these simmer for about three hours
Results:
1. No mordant-Cotton
2. Alum- Organic Dobby
3. Alum- Organic Dobby
 All simmered for three hours
1 & 2 left to cool in dye bath overnight

Madder Root
Even though I already treated my fabric with an alum mordant, I went ahead and put some more alum directly into my bath for this one (’bout three heaping Tbs) Why? I read some where that using additives will produce colors that lean on the red side and others will lean on the orange side. 

 I made roughly three concentrates for my dye bath.

It was looking really orange, so I stripped most of the roots in the middle of the process because the outer part of the root is what really gives off the yellowish/orangish color. The inside is what I really wanted for red.

Boiled it down again.

I was really thinking I was going to end up with an orange or peach. (A tutorial told me that most madder root dye baths end up orange. So it’s still pretty touchy)
Results:
 1. Alum-Soy Organic Cotton Jersey 
2. Alum-Recycled Twill
Both simmered for about four hours. 
What you should know about Madder Root:
-It is Very heat sensitive. Madder should never really be brought to a rapid boil. In Fact… it should be brought to a simmer over the course of two hours…yea, go ahead and find something else to do.
-Should never really go past 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
-Is a good candidate for solar or cool dyeing.
-The roots should be rinsed first to remove the yellows and oranges from the outer part of the root that usually turn your bath orange.
-After that, let soak, rink and chop up or better yet, blend (in a blender you don’t use for food, of course)
….yep I think that about sums it up as far as my knowledge… of course there’s more to know, so you should defiantly research some more before doing this, because I obviously didn’t do this perfectly. 


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