Friday, October 5, 2012

Dyeing with mushrooms ... first fruits

To start the process, I just emptied the gallon jug with the mushroom liquid into the dyepot, added another gallon of water, heated it up and added some wool roving, a skein of yarn and some cotton. Nothing seemed to be happening in terms of color strike and it smelled strongly of ammonia. Remembering that one usually dyes protein fibers with acid dye and ignoring the fact that I had stuck some cotton in there as well, I acidified the bath with vinegar until I couldn't smell the ammonia any longer - not precise, but it seemed to work because the fiber and yarn did visibly begin to take up color. I kept the temperature of the bath below boiling, but steaming and let it stay heated for about 45 minutes. Then I let it cool in the pot overnight and rinsed and washed it out the next day. The color is a light tan.