The attic is a place dedicate to share my passion :costuming and sewing.I'm not a professional or expert seamstress,only the mother of young kids who love sewing.You won't find 100% historical costume,museum replica, perfection or extreme thing here.

I believe everyone who bring some goodwill can sew and enjoy it.The attic is an unpretentious place .I show my work, information and hope it could somehow inspired you.Feel free to leave comment or share idea.Be welcome and visit as much as you want.

mercredi 5 septembre 2012

Natural dye

Working with natural dye could be a fun experience or painfull .I wish to explain how it work using a modern approach. By natural I mean the use of plant to get a specific color .I won't talk about the use of insect or minera land can't explain all the details or dosage to make some.I wish to present an overview and if after this you are more interest on the subject , I suggest you buy a book or found serious ressource before starting.

Natural dye will work well on natural fabric that's not a secret.A lot of  fabric available today are blend even if sometimes they say they are 100%.Most of costumer buy fabric which do not required dye but sometimes when you want a specific shade of blue for example , it may be hard or impossible to find.Making a test is always a good idea.

How it work
The plant must be crush and put in a bag to make an infusion.It's like making a tea.You put your tea in the bath and add the mordant.Mordant  is a substance which will help to fix the color to the fabric and will reveal the color it self.To have successfull result you should use a specific amount of fabric , water , plant and mordant.The fabric must be wet before entering in the bath and should stay in for a moment.The fabric must have been previously wash .A detail like this can change completely the result.The temperature can have effect too.

The material
The main material to make it are : a pair of glove , pestle and mostar, plants , gloves, muslin bag , balance , a bath or something equal , old black clothing to wear ,a stopwatch , a mask , water , thermometer and a mordant .You may required more then this but it's a basic need , ex you may need more then one pair of glove.

Mordant will fix the color.A mordant should be use with the right plant .It product a reaction between them .It's like ice cream and pie , they love each other.Ice cream don't like to be on the top of a hot coffee.It's the same idea.Mordant like alum and ferrous sulfate are available at the drugstore.Copper,chrome and tin should be buy from a supplier because they are very poisonous.They required to be handle very carefully .

Each plant on this earth cannot be use but there is a lot of choice.Making a complete list will be too long .I make a quick list of easy and common to find.

Dyer's chamomile
Elder leaves or berries
Juniper berries
Onion skin
St-John Wort

Even if it seem complicated , making natural dyes could be a great experience.Read more on the subject and find recipe you could follow.Remember to always wear some old clothing , I do prefer black for it.Use your mind , if for some reason the recipe skip a step or may put yourself in danger , don't do it.Some mordant are real poison, no joke.Be carefull and take all the time it need to make the experience a success.No rush or pressure. I have no book to recommend for the moment , the one I have is too much incomplete .If someone know one or know a solid ressource , feel free to mention it as a comment .

1 commentaire:

  1. There is a Craftovision video on dyeing wuth Turmeric.