dyeing with indigo plants

Published by on November 13, 2020

Whenever possible, I try to choose native or native-ish plants, meaning plants indigenous to my area or ones that have been grown in the area for a long period of time. WARNING! I tend to pick fresh leaves and flowers in bloom, but you can also try using dried plants or roots if you’d like. Now to find and grow more plants! Despite Japanese Indigo (Persicaria Tinctorium) being a completely unrelated plant, I decided to give this method a go. The leaves were looking so lush that I knew that I had to try dyeing with them soon. They are shrub like in growth and grow well in moist, warm conditions. I’ve got a small bush growing but it is still too young for harvesting. The blue jeans you are wearing today are likely colored using a synthetic dye, but that wasn’t always the case. What can you tell me about it. Plant material (flowers, leaves, or roots, or a mix; the more you have, the more intense your dye will be), Optional: Garden scissors (for collecting flowers or plant material), Optional: Kitchen scale (to weigh plant material and fabric or yarn, if you’re following a specific recipe), Optional: Camp stove with propane tank (if you want to dye outside), Optional: Thermometer with clip (if you’re following a dye recipe with specific temperatures). I've been growing a couple of pots of Dyer's Knotweed / Japanese Indigo (Persicaria tinctoria) on my balcony this summer (about 6 plants in total). The fibers will darken somewhat on exposure to air but they do not oxidize like classic vatted indigo. When considering indigo cultures, most people immediately jump to Japan. Add your mordant and stir until it dissolves. You can also look for lower-impact fabric or fibers, such as organic cotton jersey. For lightest colors, dip for a few minutes. It’s a fun hobby for those who are curious, like to experiment, and don’t mind unpredictable results. The color will gradually develop resulting in robin’s egg blue, turquoise or aqua. The seeds are small, and slow to germinate so it is best to start them indoors where they can be…, I love spinning my flock's fleece and then dyeing it with my homegrown indigo leaves, 2 ply yarn that I handspun from one of my flock's fleeces, ready to be dyed. And here are a few other samples. Indigo refers both to the blue pigment used as a dye and to indigo plants of the genus Indigofera. Mix with remaining 4 gallons of water in a large pot. (You can experiment with different amounts, though; it’s sometimes worthwhile to create a batch of test samples with fabric swatches.). And I’m so pleased with how well it worked! About Indigo Plant Dye. For one thing, you can get an incredible range of hues, including yellow, orange, green, red (if you use madder), blue (if you dye with woad or indigo), purple, grey, and brown. Your email address will not be published. – Barberry (mahonia sp.) Most cultures have their own recipes and techniques, often accompanied by spiritual rites, to create natural indigo dye. The birthplace of dye from indigo plants is India, where the dye paste is dried into cakes for ease of transportation and sale. Spring and summer are coming, and if you’ve ever been interested in natural dyeing, now’s the time to start planning. fabric or yarn It was so exciting to unwrap my little triangle and discover the beautiful patterns that folding and tying had made on this top. Why would you ever want to dye with plants? They tend to be simple patterns requiring little thought and not much counting or angst. Use the techniques and ideas featured in each month’s issue to create these and other quick & lovely projects. I've experienced it only in dye workshops (described here and here), never tried it myself at home.It requires several steps and a certain amount of care or you can easily ruin the dye bath. (Note: You can also just add the fabric or yarn to your cold dye and let it sit, or even try solar dyeing, but I tend to get better and more interesting results with heat from a stovetop or camp stove. Harvest the indigo and immediately strip the leaves from the stems and drop in a bucket of ice water. Rinse in warm water. Turn the heat off. Soak your yarn or fabric in cold water for at least an hour or until the material is thoroughly soaked. If you’re following a particular dye recipe, use your thermometer to get the exact temperature. After the first soak the cotton has turned this vivid green. Start your sewing adventure with us. She offered me some Tephrosia rufula which she described as alternative indigo plant. At that class I met a lovely lady (originally from Hawaii) who specialises in Australian Native Plants. Leaves are ready to pick for use in the dye vat. Indigo vat dyeing compared to fresh woad leaf dyeing of various fibers, at different temperatures. It produces a range of colors from intense yellow to deep orange to brown and looks cheery in the garden to boot. Label your fabric-in-progress with mordant and a date. I love growing my own Japanese Indigo plants then hand dyeing handspun wool from my very own flock with the leaves. Her experiments are documented at duckbucket.blogspot.com. Japanese Indigo (Polygonum tinctorium) dyeplant seeds are your gateway to dyeing with beautiful blue hues from the ground up!!! In the Japanese tradition, plants are first harvested and dried . Woad Plant Care: Tips On Using Woad Plant Dyes, Indigo Dyeing Guide – How To Dye With Indigo Plants, Dyeing With Woad – How To Get Dye From Woad Plants, Natural Thanksgiving Décor – How To Grow Thanksgiving Decorations, Autumn Centerpiece Ideas For Outdoor Table Décor, Corn Cob Wreath: How To Make Indian Corn Wreaths, Southern Blight Of Hosta: Controlling Hosta Southern Blight, Firebush Propagation – Learn How To Propagate Firebush Shrubs, Firebush Fertilizer Guide: How Much Fertilizer Does A Firebush Need, What Is Fallow Ground: Are There Any Benefits Of Fallowing Soil, The Bountiful Garden: Bringing The Garden To Thanksgiving, Overwintering Containers And End Of Season Cleanup, Must Have Winter Shrubs – Top 7 Shrubs For Winter Interest, Enclosed Porch Garden – Indoor Gardening On The Porch. In order to make indigo dye, you need leaves from a variety of plant species such as indigo, woad, and polygonum. But I really wanted to keep it natural and avoid using Sodium Hydrosulphite. Or, more accurately, I like knitting the first half of scarves. Cold water The resultant mix is allowed to ferment for a week or so to form a pigment called sukumo. You can also dye with all kinds of other natural substances—tea, coffee, berries, bark, vegetables, and more. The fibers will darken somewhat on exposure to air but they do not oxidize like classic vatted indigo. Let’s learn more. Find more gardening information on Gardening Know How: Keep up to date with all that's happening in and around the garden.

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