Our sign in peace

Our sign in peace
Our sign in peace

Friday, March 1, 2019

Testing new dye techniques

Happy March everyone! Just a few weeks until Spring and getting outside, and getting things done. While the Winter lingers, I am taking time to clean the wool cave, and I mean clean! I simply have too much stuff! I am working on new kits, spinning, dyeing fiber and wool. I decided to try some new dyeing techniques. I took a cookie drying rack, placed it in a baking pan...

I then added 2 ounces of alpaca fiber that I wet and saturated with water, preparing it to take on the dye.

I am using some acid dyes, Jacquard Salmon and Turquoise (I am switching over to Pro Chem so I am trying to use up the old dyes), vinegar as my mordant and 2 squeeze bottles. I mixed a teaspoon of dye with a some vinegar and gently inverted the bottles to mix. I would use less dye to get a lighter color.
I began saturating the fiber with the dye, trying to cover in strips of color. 

I left a strip of white and began to add the next color. I used the tip to get down into the fiber to get the layers below. Also leaving a strip of white, you are allowing for the colors to bleed and saturate.

I continued the alternating process until all the fiber was covered. As you can see by the time I was done, it was bleeding over which was my goal. Once covered, it was placed in the oven at 250 degrees to heat. I left it in for about an hour and a half, checking periodically. 

I removed it and allowed it to cool, then rinsed it with tepid water. Having it on the racks was great. Your just pull it out, place it in the sink and rinse. Loved this idea! 

And behold the finished product! Not bad I must say. I have to tweak a few things, but overall I loved the results and plan on trying some other colors today. It's a great way to warm the house on this never ending Winter we are having here in Connecticut!

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