This past Thursday evening, New Pond farm held a dyeing class. Their Romney sheep, raised on the farm had been sheered this past spring on the annual Founders' May Fair.
Once the sheep were shorn, the fleece was sent off to become processed. There it really is washed, spun and carded into yarn. That's where this course starts. The yarn (back again from your mill) was tied off into four ounce skeins, in it's natural winter white color and was ready for dyeing.
There were approximately a dozen people there to learn, experiment, create and have fun. Program movie director Kristen Allore went the program. The course was divided into those who wished to try their hand at organic dyes and those who would like to experiment with meals grade dyes.
Kristen had gathered pokeberries. Pokeberry can be a indigenous weed in this field. The key is usually to assemble the same quantity of organic dye materials to fiber you intend to dye. The pokeberries were taken off their stems, mashed and set to cook over the stove with vinegar as its' mordant. Notice: split pots and utensils must be used for dyeing only. The total result was a lovely purple burgundy yarn.
Mordant is a French word that means, 'to bite'. It allows the dye to adhere completely to the fiber. Cream of tartar, alum, copper, iron and additional metals/chemical substances could be used also as a mordant.
The meals was run by me grade dyes. Kool Help, Easter egg dyes (pellets), Food colouring and spices from your own cabinet such as for example turmeric, chili curry and powder could be used. Vinegar was used as the mordant.
The yarn was positioned on a plastic bag with a cup propping up the guts. It gets the look of the moat. Two colours had been blended for each skein and creatively placed across the yarn. The white areas between the two shades were massaged collectively to get a blend creating a third color. The plastic handbag (with yarn inside) was covered, and heated mixer extruder in the microwave to set the colour. The total results were beautiful variegated skeins of yarn.
Everyone was pleased with the results and looked forward to experimenting further at home.