Saturday, March 6, 2010

Happy or Sad?

I received a package in the mail last month from The Griffin Dye Works and Fiber Arts company, and I've been having a ball with it. I purchased their American dye kit which contains dye materials that where used by Native Americans as well as early colonists and pioneers. One of the dyes that I used was fustic. Fustic which is also known as Dyer's Mulberry is a hardwood. The fustic came ready to soak as shavings. I made the dye pot, put in some wool and this is the color that came out. I didn't need to use a mordant, so the color that I got was a very sunny yellow. This picture really doesn't do it justice.

The kit also came with several different mordants. One of the mordants was Iron. Iron saddens the color of the dyes, so I thought I would see how sad I could make this happy yellow fiber. I used some more wool and mordanted it with the iron. I then added the mordanted wool to the same dye pot that the first wool came from, and this is the result.
The wool turned into a very pretty olive green. It's really fun to see what different colors I can get from the same dye pot by just changing the mordant. There are about 7 or 8 different dyes in this kit along with 3-4 different mordants. The kit has been well worth the cost, and it's been quite fun to learn about the plants and mordants.

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