Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Term Paper: Making Natural Dyes


Did you know that simmering avocado skins and pits in water for about an hour will render a dusty pink dye?  I'm making all kinds of nerdy discoveries this week as I work on a term project for my Textiles class.  I'll share the finished project with you next week, but in the mean time here are some pictures and a little bit about what I've learned so far...


Onion skins=a warm yellow dye.  Hot tip, scrape them from bottom of the grocery store bin, because peeling a bunch of onions is no fun.


Waste not: Black beans render a blue-gray dye, and if you boil them in a clean pot, once you extract the liquid, you can use the beans for cooking.  How's that for multi-tasking?


Making natural dye is only half the work. You must prepare the wool for dyeing by soaking it for hours, then simmering it in a pot with a mordant (like Alum and Cream of Tarter) to ensure it holds the dye.  I'm going to be a pro when it comes to Easter Eggs this year.


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