Monday, August 24, 2009

Dyeing to Knit

To start the knitting season some friends and I got together to dye wool.

Mahonia (Oregon grape) bark.

The bark boils on the stove. We also tried onion skin, blueberries, carrot leaves, blackberries, red cabbage and beets.

Mahonia dyed wool dries in the late summer sun.

Barbie with her wonderful colors.

Sandra's bright yellow comes from carrot leaves.


  1. How fun! I love the colors. Once dyed, do the colors hold well?

  2. Great Colors, I can't wait to see what you knit. I'm sure it will be beautiful. D. Check out link to knitting blog on my blog.

  3. Beautiful. I'm surprised about the blue and the orange. I didn't know you could get such bright and clear colors with naturals. I'm not saying I like those better. They are all satisfying to the eye.

  4. Hi Paula, yes the colors hold up well since we mordanted the wool with metals first. There will be a little fading with time but that makes them even more alive.

    Priya you can probably find amazing dyes in the textile capital of the world where you live.

    Daniel, I am not a knitter but will have to learn so that I can hang out with these wonderful women!

    Kathy, the blue is probably derived from an iron mordant and beets, or berries. The orange will be an alum mordant and beets with carrot tops I am guessing. By the end of the afternoon we were all just dipping our skeins into various pots to see what we could make so I lost track.