Cherry Bomb Baby

I live in a pile of bricks with a fire puter-outer, a Halloween enthusiast and a pretend lemur, who sometimes admits to being my second son. I have a kitchen for flowers. I know all the lyrics to the Spiderman theme song and (am forced to) sing it everyday. I cook with color. This was a blog mostly about yarn spinning and natural dyeing. Now, it is fair to say, it lacks direction entirely.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Overdyeing Again and Again

I went for green again and dyed this Romney top (from my cousin-in-law's New Zealand farm) with a high concentration of Earth hues osage extract. The yellow came out great and brilliant as before. I'm so sad that you can't currently get osage from them, I have one 2 oz bottle left now.

After some fussing and some frustration, leading to two days of neglect and my indigo pot was ready. It was such a thrill because I hadn't touched the pot in a while and it went off and turned very blue. No amount of thioria dioxide was going to help it out, I added a bit but to no avail. I guessed the ph was off and added some lye. I fretted a while and eventually left the pot in disgust. Apparently, when it comes to indigo, this is like yelling at the TV or kicking the car and getting it to work. Walk away for days and the surface turns a lovely yellow/green that means you are ready to dye! If you scrape the top with a spoon you would see more of the greenish color.

Osage + Indigo = Bottle Green. At least, that is what my earth hues natural dye extract manual says. What do you think? I think came out lovely this time! I dipped it fairly quickly (there was a lot of stock in there this time due to my prolonged tinkering with the pot) and I think I managed to come out with a lovely green. This 2 oz bit of top I dipped fully and another one I dipped only sections, so there is the original osage color and green overdyed. These are taking forever to dry since its been raining on and off here for weeks now.

Super M is always complaining about the indigo these days, "I want you to take the indido out of here Mom." "I can STILL smell the indido!" I try telling him that it just smells blue and he both confused and offended by this and tells me, "No it DOESN'T! It smells STINTY!" Which is how he says stinky. Yesterday he told me it smelled like cookies, I think it was these:

Mexican sun plants, coreopsis and sunflower. I dead headed these this past summer and froze them. I still have a few more baggies but this is most of it. I was decidedly unscientific about it and just weighted equal amounts dyestuff to fiber by the feel of it. I saved the remaining dye bath (to which I added the left over osage dye baths-that was a LOT of osage!) Cooking these made the sweetest smell of chamomile like tea. I yummy, apetizing aroma for a change! The remaining rovings are drying outside and it was too wet to lay out the locks I dyed with them. Its supposed to rain again tomorrow so I don't know when those will see the sun. The colors are more muted and don't scream quite as loudly as the osage. The yellows are more of what you would expect from a natural dye stuff, soft and quiet and utterly wearable. They smell vaguely sweet and tea like as well.

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