The advantage in dyeing with Indigo is, that no mordant is needed. The water doesn't need to be heated to more than 40 degrees Celsius and a little goes a long way. We can dye 3-4 kg of Wool using 50g of Indigo.
There are many ways of dyeing with Indigo. Below you will find the recipe for a yeast vat. For a straight forward no-waiting-required approach, you can use Hydros as an oxygen remover. Waiting time approx. one hour.
Basic Recipe ~
It is possible to create a vat fromindigo,lime (calcium hydroxide)and over-ripe fruit such as bananas or dates that relies on the chemistry of the sugars* rather than fermentation of the fruit.But it’s easier to simply use fructose shared in
*Fructose and glucosefound in ripe fruit are reducing sugars; ordinary sugar – sucrose – is not a reducing sugar.
FERMENTATION USING YEAST:
For 500gr wool etc. at one time . (amount can be repeated several times using the same bath)
9l water dye container with lid separate pot for the water bath to add the container 110gr sugar 50gr dried yeast with out preservatives etc. 30gr bicarbonate of soda 40gr ground Indigo thermometer
This Method requires the dye bath to be on a constant 40 degrees Celsius and shouldn't exceed 50 degrees Celsius. Ideally put the dye pot in a water bath on a wire rack to ensure even distribution of temperature.
Fill pot with 9l of water and heat to 40 degrees Celsius.
Mix sugar and yeast and add to the water. Leave until dissolved and bubbly.
Dissolve soda in a glass with hot water and add the dye, stir until smooth. Add to yeast mixture.
Close lid and ideally put into a bin bag, you want it as air locked as possible. Leave at steady temperature for 8 hours.
Lift lid and stir carefully until all the foamed Indigo has returned into the dye. Try to stir as little air into it as possible.
Close the pot up again and leave for 48 hours until the water is yellow green.
The water will show a metallic shimmer on the surface when ready. Carefully stir it back in.
Add the damp but not mordanted wool etc. make sure all are under the water add a plate or a metallic disc to press the wool etc. under the surface. Whatever swims at the top will be unevenly dyed.
Close it up and leave for 6 -12 hours.
Remove wool etc. and press out back into the dye bath.
Open wool etc. and leave exposed for at least 20min. All should turn blue.
If you prefer a deeper blue add it to the dye bath again and repeat step 9.
Wash twice with a mild soap, then rinse 4-5 times using vinegar in the last bath.
Hang up and air for a few days or weeks.
You can repeat this dyeing process using the same dye bath several times.
Madder Dye Cut or ground ~ Dye Colour a variety of reds including orange reds, brick red, blood red and fiery reds.
*Collected in the Wild of Iran
The color depends on a variety of conditions, like the soil the roots where grown, their age, the mineral content of the water used for dyeing, the temperature of the dye pot, and how much madder you use in relation to the fiber. Many dyers suggest mordanting the wool just with alum and not to use cream of tartar as well, but that is your own choice and why not try to experiment a bit? Like with any dyeing, you will need to soak the fiber overnight or for a few hours before adding them to the dye pot for both hot and cold dyeing.You can dye with madder either cold or with heat; some dyers use chalk to get better reds.
(You can adjust the amounts as needed)
100 grams dried madder roots 100 grams mordanted (Alum) fiber (50 grams for darker reds or 300 grams for lighter colors) 7 to 10 liters of water 6 grams calcium carbonate (chalk) if using
Soak the roots in the dye pot over night Bring o 65 degrees Celsius for one hour Strain through cloth Add yarn and dye bag to dye pot Keep on 65 - 95 degrees Celsius for one hour
**IMPORTANT: The higher the temperature the darker the colour.
ORGANIC HIBISCUS DYE
Organic *ground, **cut or whole Hibiscus flowers
Cultivated in Egypt.
For a light purple colour on wool and deep pinks to dark greys on Linen & Cotton, using different mordants.
*Use 50% of dye according to the weight of the dry fabric/fibre you would like to dye when using ground Hibiscus.
**Use 75-100% of dye according to the weight of the dry fabric/fibre you would like to dye when using cut or whole Hibiscus.
This dye will need a mordant, Alum, when dyeing wool. 10-15% of Alum. Mordanted fabric or yarn, 50% - 100% hibiscus dye.
Add water to the dye and bring to the boil. Keep on a simmer for 30min. Strain the liquid through a sieve (cloth if using ground hibiscus) and returning the liquid back to the pot (no more heating required). Add your dyestuff and let it soak until your required colour depth is reached, from 1/2 hour to overnight.
Oak Gall - harvested from the wild in Turkey
Oak Gall, also known as oak apple was and is still used for making ink. We use it as a fibre Mordant, due to its high tannin content. Unlike other tannin, it doesn't stain the fibre.
Oak Gall is available as whole, cut or ground.
LOGWOOD ~ Available Cut or ground and as extract*
(Bois de Campeche, Campeachy Wood)
*Collected in the Wild (foraged) in Haiti
Logwood is a natural dye wood from Central America, used for producing blues and purples on wool, black on cotton and wool, and black and violet on silk.
Logwood is PH sensitive.
It is called by old dyers one of the Lesser Dyes because the colour was said to lose all its brightness when exposed to the air.
65g bark, soaked in water for 2 days.
100g mordanted yarn/fibre (Alum 10g)
Bring pot with dye to simmer For 2h.
Strain through cloth, add yarn/fibre and dye bag to dye bath for 1h.
The logwood chips should be put in a bag and boiled for 20 minutes to 1/2 an hour, just before using or soak overnight, bring to the boil in the morning for 1h, strain and bind into bag.
* When using extract you only need to use 5-10% of the weight of your dry fabric. Logwood is one of the more excessive dyes - a little goes a long way - especially when using extract.
CATECHU DYE ~ Dye Colour Brown and Beige
Catechu, or better known as Cutch, is a powdered dye which results in beautiful brown tones. It can be used for Cotton, silk and wool Fiber.
Cutch contains two dyes, catechu-tannic acid, which is soluble in cold water, and catechin, which needs hot water to dissolve.
*Catechu is apparently very good for eczema.
200gr wool (mordant optional see note below)
20gr of Cutch extract made into paste with boiling water (keep on adding, tends to be sticky)
Add to dye pot (hot water) and simmer; the longer the deeper the colour of the dye. Add the wool and simmer for 1 hour. Leave wool out to oxidize before rinsing.
*Several more skeins can be added later for lighter colours. Catechu is difficult to exhaust
**mordant wool with Alum for brighter results, but it will also dye a nice brown without any mordant.
RHUBARB ROOT DYE
RHUBARB ROOT ~ Dye Colour depending on PH influencer - yellow brown, green with iron and pink with Soda Ash.
Country of Collection: China
Rhubarb is indeed a stunning Plant – not only does it grow enormous – we can eat the stalks for desserts and use the leaves for mordanting fibre and the roots for creating 3 gorgeous colours.
Line the pot with a cloth. Fill the pot half with water and add the rhubarb. Bring to about 85-95 degrees Celsius for 1 hour.
Tie dye in Cloth and leave in bath. Add wool and simmer gently for 1 hour.
Add 3% -5% iron to the dye bath to turn into green or soda ash to turn it pink, if desired.
Remove after about 10min, rinse & dry.
LAC DYE ~ Dye colours violet to red to brown
Lac is a powerful dye and probably mostly know in relation to the Tibetan Monks' Tunic - all dyed with Lac. It doesn't have the brilliance of cochineal red, but a much more mature red, like wine.
*Lac is the scarlet resinous secretion of a number of species of lac insects, of which the most commonly cultivated species is Kerria lacca.
**Cultivation begins when a farmer gets a stick (brood lac) that contains eggs ready to hatch and ties it to the tree to be infested. Thousands of lac insects colonize the branches of the host trees and secrete the resinous pigment. The coated branches of the host trees are cut and harvested as stick lac.
The harvested stick lac is crushed and sieved to remove impurities. The sieved material is then repeatedly washed to remove insect parts and other soluble material. The resulting product is known as seed lac. The prefix seed refers to its pellet shape. Seed lac which still contains 3–5% impurities is processed into shellac by heat treatment or solvent extraction. (Wikipedia)
15% Lac wool (no mordant needed)
Dissolve lac in warm water and add to dyepot.
Add wool (always wet) to dye pot and bring to a simmer.
leave for one hour.
One bath can dye several skeins of yarn.
Add wool to the dye bath simmer for one hour. Let it cool and leave in dye bath overnight.
Rinse and dry.
KAMALA DYE ~ Dye Colour Yellow and Green
*Collected from the wild of India
The powdery coating of the seeds of the Kamala Tree (Mallotus philippinensis), also known as the Monkey Face Tree, produces bright yellows and oranges and greens.
Also used in Ayuverdic medicine, this Kamala powder is for dyeing purposes only.
***Sunflower yellow (add some washing Soda to dye bath) is the closest I can think of, to describe the colour obtained by Kamala. You can influence the nuances by adding different mordants or over dye with indigo for green.
Mordanted Wool (Alum 10%) 100% Kamala
Add Kamala to dye bath bring to a simmer for one hour Strain through Cloth Add wet wool to the dye bath and simmer for one hour with dye bag.
WALNUT SHELLS DYE
Dried (non-organic) Walnut Shells Ground or Cut ~ Dye Colour golden and dark Browns
*Walnut Shells powdered harvested in the wild of Macedonia
**Walnut Shells Cut harvest in the wild of Albania
Walnut shells or husks are used for plant dyeing Wool and Silk. Preferably, you would like to use green Walnut shells, the dye colour brown is more radiant, but not everybody has a Walnut tree in the back garden, so try the dried shells instead.
IF you do have a tree handy, do collect the green husks and freeze them. You can use them as a dye without any need to fix the colour due to the tannin content.
If you use the dried husks, I would suggest to use a mordant, too. But do try without it, you might like the result!
100% of Walnut shells Wool (Mordant not necessary)
Soak the shells overnight Simmer for 2 hours Strain through cloth.
Add wool to the dye bath simmer for one hour. Let it cool and leave in dye bath overnight.
Rinse and dry.
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