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Old 02-09-2008, 11:50 AM   #1
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Natural Dyes - Ideas?

Hello All,
I am trying to dye some reed for basket weaving and would like to use natural dyes. I experimented with coffee and wine so far but want more options.

Has anyone use cinnamon as a dye? If so, what color did you achieve? What about purple grapes? I have read they will give you a light blue effect but I am suspicious.

I realize most people dye fabric or yarn but think that my reed will take on the same colors.

Thank you in advance!
J.

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Old 02-09-2008, 12:04 PM   #2
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I saw Martha Stewert use red and brown onion skins once... I can't remember how she did it though.
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Old 02-09-2008, 12:10 PM   #3
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I've used both beet juice and strong tea as dyes. Black walnut hulls also make a great natural dye.

Here's a great site to give you more ideas:

Natural Dyes From Plants - Pioneer Thinking
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Old 02-09-2008, 12:27 PM   #4
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Constance, I've read that you have to soak the walnut hulls overnight to get a good color. Did you find this to be true? What were you dying?

Thank you for the link. I looked through their site yesterday - great information!
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Old 02-09-2008, 02:03 PM   #5
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ever tried to get a berry stain out of...um...ANYTHING? LOL. raspberries, blueberries, black berries, cranberries, and remember, you can get some pretty s****y colors in berries. I've seen golds, and oranges, all kinds of stuff. As for greens, I'd probably take a shot at spinach. Cook the daylights out of it, make your kids eat it, and reduce the water down, Im guesing it should concentrate quite nicely, and lord knows it stains...
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Old 02-09-2008, 02:07 PM   #6
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How about trying turmeric to get a rich yellow/gold color?
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Old 02-09-2008, 02:18 PM   #7
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I have a book about herbs that includes a table on how to use various herbs for making dyes. A few examples are elderberries for purple, marigold for pale yellow, onion for orange or yellow (depending on the fixative used), St. John's wort for beige, sorrel roots for soft pink, tansy for mustard yellow, and turmeric for gold-orange.

This site has some info, too: Making natural dyes from plants

HTH.
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Old 02-09-2008, 06:59 PM   #8
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Thank you everyone!
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Old 02-09-2008, 07:32 PM   #9
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Tea works, so do beets. Purple potatoes do a good job. Berries, especially black or blueberries.

By the way, beets come in golden, too...and they make a lovely yellow dye.
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Old 02-10-2008, 12:06 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VeraBlue View Post
...Purple potatoes do a good job...
By the way, beets come in golden, too...and they make a lovely yellow dye.
Just the skins for the potatoes? I'm going to assume if I use beets, it's the whole beet (based on the color my water turns when I cook them for dinner).

Have you dyed things using either potatoes or beets?

Thank you!
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