Purls and Knit

Musings from an Environmental Engineer who tends to be full of knit.

Mordants and Onion Dye November 10, 2009

Filed under: Fiber Working,Yarn and Dyeing — knitbee @ 4:47 pm

I have been experimenting with some natural dyes. I have done coffee, walnuts, onion peels, etc.  I have not needed to work with mordants until now due to the color fastness of these dyes. I had three skeins of merino burning a hole in my yarn closet so I busted them out to get dyed with the onion peels that I have been accumulating for the last month. They are still soaking overnight but here is a picture of the dyes with their respective mordants.

Dye+Mordants

I will post pictures when the yarn is done 🙂

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I am Dyeing! September 27, 2009

Filed under: Fiber Working,Yarn and Dyeing — knitbee @ 8:05 am
Tags: ,

So I have been branching out in my fiber working lately. I will do a series of posts on how this is true so look forward to that.

One of the ways that I have been branching out is I have been experimenting with dyeing my own yarn.  I have purchased a few undyed skeins from the yarn store here in Rolla and have been experimenting mostly with dyeing yarn using coffee. The yarn I have been working with is 100% merino wool and is quite nice feeling and I am looking forward to working more with it. I dyed the first skein a couple of weeks ago and was very successful in getting  a uniform beautiful caramel color from the coffee. I gave this skein away in a yarn swap and started missing it so I decided to do another today with my friend Sara.

Cotton Pastels

We got really adventurous and decided to try our hand at  Kool Aid dyeing some cotton yarn that we acquired in a unique way. ( See this post) We went to the grocery store and bought all the pretty colors of Kool Aid that we could get our hands on.

Dye

We decided to experiment with some small practice skeins that we put together before using our big skeins that we extracted. Some things that we learned were that cotton is not terribly good at absorbing color from the dye. Next time we will use something besides Kool Aid for the cotton.  We did get some really great pastels out of this little experience and my second try at coffee dyeing the merino was super successful.

Big Skeins

I left the merino in the wrapped up skein form so it left a variegated look to the yarn with some spots a litgher caramel than others. I am really really happy with how it turned out 🙂

Coffee try 2