Sunshine from Garden Marigolds

I think I struck gold! Extracting the dye from dried marigolds couldn’t have been easier. Simply put them into a jar and cover with water. There is almost immediate color. The problem was that in all my resource materials the only marigold dye recipe I found was for fresh petals. So as is common for me, it was a seat of the pants moment.

I soaked 50 grams of dried petals overnight. Then I drained them, reserving the liquid gold. I put the soaked petals into a large crockpot  and simmered on low setting for 2 hours. Some natural dyes tend to go brown if the heat is too high so I use my crockpot in the studio to keep the heat low and constant.

extracting dye

 I love the variation of colors from the dye pot. The lemon yellow silks are a ray of sunshine. The indigo pieces that were over-dyed got some much needed zip.  The eco-printed long sleeved tee looks amazing and I love the splash of color added to the linen scarves. There was a lot of color changed on the indigo scarf, but not as much on the logwood.   I think they are all keepers. The bonus is that I still have 2 quarts of dye extract. I will have to figure out a WOF (weight of fabric) recipe for fellow dyers who like things more exact!

Little Pink Worm

The best kind of little pink worm is on the end of a hook enticing a fish to bite it’s dinner, so I can have dinner!  But that isn’t the kind this is…but it looks like some kind of wiggly pink something or other doesn’t it?  This is a piece of snow dyed fabric from last winter’s dye days that was less than stellar.  So I worked for hours and hours stitching and wrapping resist patterns into it. It is in a dye bath of very stinky old walnut dye right now. The photo is a little fuzzy [caterpillar?] but I’m hoping for good things when it’s dyed, dried and untied.


Black Walnut Dye #2

 Since the walnut dye pot was still on the stove I pulled a couple of previously dyed fabrics from my stash to see what happened with an over dye. The blue is from an indigo vat, the print was dyed with MX dyes and the one piece is rust dyed.

I also put a piece of hot pink cotton, some cheese cloth and a piece of white cotton batting in the pot.   I put them all in at the same time which was a leap of faith but probably not something I should have done. I’m not a dyer, I only play once in awhile if the occasion arises.

I think either the indigo or the rust piece still had residue from the original dye. Which ever one it was, and I suspect the indigo,  saddened the dye. So instead of a nice soft brown in the white areas, I got a soft gray. You can see it in the last photos.

I think I like the rusted piece the most but there are no ugly fabrics. They all have a place in a piece that isn’t  created yet.