Monday, October 15, 2007

Shades of summer

New Tulip baby sweater, done in sws soy merino blend, and the 6 to 12 month age...sweet pattern from dreams in color, which I am apparently addicted to... No seams to sew and knit from the neck down. Followed by my mushroom dye cluster. We were out mushrooming this morning and now dyeing some wensleydale locks for boas..although am using the fibre reactive dyes. Will cook up more polypores and save the liquid today. Obsessive would be a great description of me when it comes to fibres. Just can't seem to get enough play time with this medium.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

polypore dyes

More dyeing taking place, yesterday did this batch and today am experimenting with new doing sulphur caps and will take pictures later. Seems I am into the yellow warm shades because that is what I am getting...tried to dye with the coral fungi yesterday, and ended up putting them into a polypore bath as they just didn't take any color from the coral fungi. Perhaps I used the wrong mordant, but I am flying by the seat of my pants, and need to get the mushroom book...I am tracking "Mushrooms for Color" by Miriam Rice but haven;t received a copy yet....Finishing the larger size of the Tulip sweater, and a pair of socks... pics to come

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

More mushroom dyes

This is the latest mushroom dyeing although I realize I didn't have enough of the mushrooms to get the purple color, but did get a lovely taupe which I do love, so not a bad failure. I will have to gather more next time. It was called Strawberry and Cream, and is a small toothed fungus which bleeds red, but apparently is to dye purple. I don't really have the scoop on this yet, and couldn't find any data on this particular mushroom except that it is a dye mushroom, so I used the alum and cream of tartar hoping for the best...and like I said not bad, of course, it is pure silk boucle so it is hard to wreck that fibre, you could drag it through manure and it would probably look lovely I will try and collect more... am working on a sweater, larger size, Tulip and just finished a's that Dreams in Color, same designer as the Tulip and same award winning feature for me, no seaming.....

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

red brown butt rot

Snappy Title eh? which is to say it is really Dyer's Polypore, or uncommonly called Phaeolus Schweinitzii....and is a fungus found at the foot of fir trees, and is a fabulous dye. My dh and I have been mushroom hunting in the woods and eating chanterelles, and picking red brown butt rot, after hearing it would be a good dye. Dh convinced me to try and dye with it, so under his tutelage I commenced at first dragging my heels, because of course it meant mordanting, then dyeing and generally taking part of my day, but we looked up instructions for mushroom dyeing on the net, and so with a mordant of 25 grams of alum, 10 grams of cream of tartar, and 100 grams of sock wool, voila....and do I love is such a wonderful rich color and is drying by the woodstove as we speak, not to mention it gave me something interesting to blog about.... and not to mention completely free...and there is more out there. We are going to try and experiment with younger fungus and older ones to see if we get different colors, plus changing the mordant. On a totally other front, I have just felted a beret which was out of soy wool and turned out quite was a quick felt, I pulled it out after a few minutes in the wash cycle and it was already felted, also have been making some peruvian hats which I will take some pics of also and having fun this week with lots of projects...