Solar Dyes: From Purple and Red to Green

Spring brought the peonies, one of which had deep red petals which went into a dye pot with pieces of silk, wool and cotton. Painting of Aoraki – Mt Cook behind the flowers is by John Horton.  These peonies were a gift from Viv and Nancy! This is the amazing colour that appeared… My next test was…

Read More

Green dye from Black Turtle Bean

Following on from the previous post about black bean dye – The next day, bicarbonate of soda was added to the Black Turtle Bean solar dye.  Colour changed to green and this colour transferred to the un-mordanted silk and cotton scraps. This test needs to be redone; the bicarb was added to the original dye…

Read More

Black Turtle Bean, dye

Saw Grackleandsun‘s blog on black bean dyeing, so I thought I would add this information on my recent test.  I used Black Turtle beans – not sure if these are the ones used in dyeing by Grackleandsun, but according to Wikipedia – “Black turtle bean is a small, shiny variety of common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris), especially popular in…

Read More

Red Freesia Solar Dye

In November, when I was clearing the dead spring bulb foliage, I kept a few dried flowers from some of the freesias we had grown this year.  The thought crossed my mind – I wonder if they will provide colour as the dried flowers were still orange-yellow.  As you can see the freesia flower was…

Read More

Cotinus Dye Journey

Dye Pre history: 29 January 2013 Solar dye created with Cotinus coggygria and a small iron nail. Added pink silk and white cotton bundles containing honesty seed pods, aquilegia seeds and lupin seed pods.  Cotton fabric on top held under water with a cotinus twig. 2 February 2013 Bundles removed, inspected, and the silk returned…

Read More

Steam and Solar Dyes – New Zealand Plants

In this post I collect together the New Zealand plants I have recently used in steam and solar dyeing. Hebe species.  Steamed bundles Hebe flowers and leaves were laid out on opposite sides of two silk bundles, with hebe twigs for the core. After steaming the leaves produced yellow and the flowers a mix of blue…

Read More

Solar dyeing – Hypericum

For one of my first solar dyeing experiments, I used St Johns Wort, Hypericum, from the garden. My plant is one of the many varieties of Hypericum. On 6 January I placed the buds, leaves and flowers separately in three glass jars, filled with tap water (Oxford bore) and placed a weight on the top to…

Read More