Tag: tarka trail

14 Aug

St-Johns Wort Plant Collecting and Dye Bath

Foraging along the Tarka Trail

Yellow Flowers of St. John's Wort are found along grass verges. Many changed to orange seed buds, which helps identify them from other yellow flowers and which may be attributable to the golden colour result.

Collecting Dye Plants (St. Johns Wort in basket) along a decommissioned rail track Barnstaple to Bideford: my 10 mile foraging route using Jenny Dean's plant spotter book.   Late summer finds many of the traditional dye plants along grass verges.

St Johns Wort - Dye Bath Process

  • Soak flower tops and seed buds overnight in rain water. I use pond water.
  • Boil up and simmer for an hour. Press fibres with potato masher. Remove from vessel.
  • When cool enough not to roughen silk, add and soak silk, stirring occasionally.
  • Colour appears soon, but leave overnight to absorb dye colour fully.
  • First silk takes most dye pigment.

1st Woad Dye Session

2nd Woad Dye Session

  • Most pigment its taken up with 1st session, but there is always some left.  Remove 1st silk piece.
  • Add dyestuff again and heat and simmer dye bath for 15 mins.
  • When cooler than hand hot, add 2nd piece of silk and leave overnight, to absorb all dye pigment.
  • Second soak actually used up remainder of dye pigment leaving water clear, with paler silk result.

3rd Dye Session- Iron Modifier

Use remaining dye liquid to add iron (ferrous sulphate) for a greyer or greener result.  Colour mix is involved: cream dyes will turn pale grey, the stronger orangey St. John's Wort dye produced green-grey. Other dye baths may produce a pale grey/dull brown results.  Iron can be added by a little rusty water, made by soaking rusty nails in a jar. Small amount needed to tip the colour. Avoid using too much as iron can weaken silk fibres.

Hand Dyed Silk Samples

  • LEFT:     Rosemary - St. Johns Wort Light/St. Johns Wort strong gold - Comfrey Light - Comfrey Dark
  • RIGHT:  Top left St. Johns Wort gold, Green/St. Johns Wort iron modified contrasting with the other natural dye results.
22 May

Tansy dyed silk

 

 

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Silk soon absorbs the dye colour in the strong Tansy dye bath. As this silk can be matted slightly by over heating, and simmering, I only introduce it to a hand hot dye bath. I left it soaking overnight to achieve best strength of colour before rinsing out several times in warm water, until water runs clear.

Wet rinsed silk - drying. Do not squeeze out too hard, or twist creases may occur which don't completely iron out. In summer silk dries fairly quickly and can be ironed smooth while still slightly damp before any creases set in.

A few dark 'spots' are splashes from another dye bath with iron I was doing simultaneously. Only do ONE dye bath at a time.

This lime yellow is very vivid (see comparisons with other gold colours), so I will overpaint with silk dyes or bundle leaf prints. However, it could be useful to over-dye with madder to give a good orange, or with woad for a turquoise blue. The future life of this piece will be posted here....

See more and others' dye procedures on my Natural Plant Dye Pinterest Board.

Post script.../ This lime yellow was over-dyed in November, used for another test with sycamore leaves bundle-dyeing; I didn't think I would use a bright lime yellow, but must replace as a sample.

 

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22 May

Ladies bedstraw Dyed Silk


2nd silk sample Rinsed. Result when dry is a light peach.

These samples will be matched with recycled fabric prints, and painted on before becoming part of a new garment; which will be added to this post in due course….


See more and others’ dye procedures on my Natural Plant Dye Pinterest Board.

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1st silk sample has been pre-mordanted in Alum for a day before putting to soak in hand hot dye bath. Rinse away plant debris and extra dye: result after rinsing and drying is a strong salmon hued peach colour.


1st silk sample Rinsed. Has been already soaked in dye bath one day. 2nd silk sample in cooled dye bath which was reheated with bedstraw to obtain more dyestuff.


Red dye liquid is drained off into glass bowl to soak silk.




1st silk sample: Strong peach result after washing out. Steam iron while still damp to help smooth out creases, or don’t squeeze out water.


2nd silk sample Rinsed. Result when dry is a light peach.

These samples will be matched with recycled fabric prints, and painted on before becoming part of a new garment; which will be added to this post in due course….


See more and others’ dye procedures on my Natural Plant Dye Pinterest Board.

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1st silk sample has been pre-mordanted in Alum for a day before putting to soak in hand hot dye bath. Rinse away plant debris and extra dye: result after rinsing and drying is a strong salmon hued peach colour.


1st silk sample Rinsed. Has been already soaked in dye bath one day. 2nd silk sample in cooled dye bath which was reheated with bedstraw to obtain more dyestuff.


Red dye liquid is drained off into glass bowl to soak silk.




1st silk sample: Strong peach result after washing out. Steam iron while still damp to help smooth out creases, or don’t squeeze out water.


2nd silk sample Rinsed. Result when dry is a light peach.

These samples will be matched with recycled fabric prints, and painted on before becoming part of a new garment; which will be added to this post in due course….


See more and others’ dye procedures on my Natural Plant Dye Pinterest Board.

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1st silk sample has been pre-mordanted in Alum for a day before putting to soak in hand hot dye bath. Rinse away plant debris and extra dye: result after rinsing and drying is a strong salmon hued peach colour.


1st silk sample Rinsed. Has been already soaked in dye bath one day. 2nd silk sample in cooled dye bath which was reheated with bedstraw to obtain more dyestuff.


Red dye liquid is drained off into glass bowl to soak silk.




1st silk sample: Strong peach result after washing out. Steam iron while still damp to help smooth out creases, or don’t squeeze out water.


2nd silk sample Rinsed. Result when dry is a light peach.

These samples will be matched with recycled fabric prints, and painted on before becoming part of a new garment; which will be added to this post in due course….


See more and others’ dye procedures on my Natural Plant Dye Pinterest Board.

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Lady’s Bedstraw is found in waste ground and near the coast. The reddish roots are used for dyeing; family is Madder (Rubiaceae) a well known red dye. The plant I found is growing along the Tarka Trail cycle path (ex rail track) opposite the small town of Bideford, N. Devon. Not easy to pull out the roots, and many were left for next year’s growth. This seemed a particularly large and well established plant. Bedstraw has many herbal uses.

Lady’s Bedstraw Ahimsa silk results: 1st soak strong peach – 2nd soak light peach.

 

 


1st silk sample has been pre-mordanted in Alum for a day before putting to soak in hand hot dye bath. Rinse away plant debris and extra dye: result after rinsing and drying is a strong salmon hued peach colour.


1st silk sample Rinsed. Has been already soaked in dye bath one day. 2nd silk sample in cooled dye bath which was reheated with bedstraw to obtain more dyestuff.


Red dye liquid is drained off into glass bowl to soak silk.




1st silk sample: Strong peach result after washing out. Steam iron while still damp to help smooth out creases, or don’t squeeze out water.


2nd silk sample Rinsed. Result when dry is a light peach.

These samples will be matched with recycled fabric prints, and painted on before becoming part of a new garment; which will be added to this post in due course….


See more and others’ dye procedures on my Natural Plant Dye Pinterest Board.

 

Images copyright Amelia Jane Hoskins Please email for use permission.