This was the third of three workshops that I led at Designer Makers21 this summer. This workshops is really special to me as after it the dyers are well on their Dyeing journey.
In workshop one we had learned how to scour, mordant and dye with different concentrations of a powdered dye. Then this was followed by a workshop where we used the three core dyes that were so important, historically, to local dyeing- Madder, Weld and Woad - and then got their secondary dyes too. (See previous blogs for more details and images.)
For the third workshop each of the participants arrived with scoured and mordanted yarn the along with their soaked plant material. Our aim of this workshop was to get a set of six colours from the basic dyebath using additives and over dyeing so each member went home with their unique set. There was a choice of 7 plus treatments for each plant dyed skein so decisions had to be made.
There was much excitement and discussion about which plants had been chosen and which ones might be used at home after the day.
While the plants were cooking up and yielding their colour we looked at examples I had taken ' for ideas' and more importantly learned how to make up the additive solutions, how to use them and how to store them safely at home.
What a busy action packed day it was. Unfortunately I only took a few photos.
This is a plant dyed skein, complete with additive and having been heated up. From memory (?!) I think the additive was copper.
Everyone appeared to be very conscientious taking notes and had leaned from previous sessions that adding yarn 'labels' was a big help in identification later.
These are the colours a member obtained from eucalyptus leaves- fantastic.
All the dyed sets were quite different and it was a real joy for me to see how far each person had got since the start of the workshops. We are keeping in touch and more is planned later - watch this space. You can never stop learning about natural dyeing!