I have finally taught a 'proper' workshop on plant dyeing. I have had many dyeing sessions with friend, and at work, but this one was the first attempt at an organized event. Thank you Craftstitute for creating space here in Ithaca where artists can come and have a space to teach a class. I think it went off very well and I hope my - newly addicted to color friends - agree.
We started off by putting plastic labels on the skeins, then pre-soaking the fibers in water. I had already mordanted the skeins prior to class in Alum & Cream of Tartar. After adding the dye stuff which was - Sage brush ( I collected some branches when I went out west a few years ago), dried Marigold flower heads, Red Onion skins, Madder and then a lichen I had soaking in an ammonia bath for a month - after about 45 minutes of hot soaking we then strained the bath thru mesh and cheesecloth.
The marigold turned out to be a really strong yellow and everybody loved it.
The red onion skin didn't turn out a greenish as it had in the past. Its a wonder to get get color from nature and its always a surprise.
The madder had been soaking in my kitchen for days and the red (on the orange side) that we got was very impressive.
Stunning results - thank you nature.