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Dye wool with Queen Anne’s Lace for a subtle antique hue

Queen Anne’s Lace has long been known as an herbal remedy and natural dye source. The shades can range from yellows to greens. In this first experiment we got a very pale shade because the concentration of plant material was quite low. Gather a larger amount of flower heads...

How to Dye Wool with Fresh Lichen

There are a few species of lichen that grow prolifically in the woods around our house, and I’ve been wanting to use them for a dye for quite a while. After gathering them and preparing a fermented ammonia dye vat last year, my first experiment didn’t turn out as...

How to Dye Wool with Butternut Hulls

A few months ago, our generous neighbor gave me some butternut hulls for dyeing. Butternut are a hardwood tree that were at one time very common across New England. Unfortunately, over-harvesting for the furniture industry has led to their scarcity. It may not be possible to locate a sustainable...

Dye Wool with Mullein a Herbaceous Biennial

As soon as we started to build our pasture for the sheep, I encountered something that looked like Lamb’s Ear, but wasn’t. We didn’t know what it was at first, but noticed the sheep didn’t like to eat it, so we set about trying to eradicate it from our...

Dye wool with Tansy Using These Easy Steps

This was the first time I’d tried dyeing with tansy, and I was pleased with the speediness of the dye set and the resulting color. While a tint shift didn’t work as planned (adding ammonia did not yield a green shade as promised), the color we did get was...

Dye wool with madder

Madder root, or Rose Madder, is a traditional woody shrub that has been cultivated and used for thousands of years to create red tones. While I’ve used other sources to create red, I’ve found this one to be the most reliable. However, it is temperature sensitive, so carefully attention...

Dye wool with beets!

Beet root is an unconventional and some would say risky source of natural dye. After a few trials over the past two years, I stumbled on a method that yielded saturated color, and I’m sharing my notes in the hopes that others will give it a try. Step 1:...

Dye with Goldenrod for Vivid Yellow

Goldenrod is a fantastic source of saturated, yellow dye, and one of the plants that I recommend starting with if you are new to natural dyeing. Step 1: Prepare the yarn. Mordant the wool with alum. I use a 10% by weight-of-goods proportion of alum to wool. Botanical Colors...

Dyeing Yarn with Jewelweed, Native to North America

Jewelweed is a native North American plant that grows in many climates, usually near wet areas and along river banks. In the video, I share a method for creating beautiful natural tangerine dye using this abundant natural dye source. I first learned about jewelweed as a dye source from...

Getting started with dyeing yarn: lessons learned

When I first started to learn about natural dyeing, I was befuddled by a lot of vague information I found on the internet. Experiments on my own yielded very mixed results. After taking a class with Rebecca Burgess, I understood that there are tried-and-true techniques for getting consistent results....

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