Saturday, September 16, 2017

Fiber Dyeing

My good friend, Marlene, invited me to her home to dye roving.  Always eager to learn something new from an experienced person, I jumped at the chance.  

I am a total "newbie" so I will just tell you that roving is one of the steps on the way to spinning yarn.  

Being the ultimate hostess, she had a wonderful lunch and dessert for us.  I'd say it was a "win/win" for me.

My spinning guild has a dye day every June but I've never participated.  I was afraid to add just one more thing to my already busy life that I might enjoy.   

 Above, Marlene is starting to fill the canning jars with roving. 

 Making progress.....jars are filled and about 1/8 teaspoon of dye is being added.  It's a matter of preference.  You can add multiple colors to get the shade you might want.

 Marlene is filling the jars with a mixture of water/vinegar.  Approximately 1/4 cup of vinegar to a gallon of water.

 We've stirred the dye with the handle to a wooden spoon.  How much you stir the dye affects the outcome.  You can establish a gradient color or solid color by either using a light stir or a vigorous one.  

The jars were put in a hot water bath for about 20 minutes.  All equipment is strictly dedicated to dyeing and not used for cooking.

 Marlene, had samples to show me using natural plants in the dyeing process.

 Once the jars have been drained, the roving resides on screens (or the like) to dry in the beautiful Vermont sunshine.

 Using jars is useful if you want to dye smaller batches in multiple colors.

 We also dyed a march larger batch directly in the canning pot. 
 Doesn't this look like strawberry sorbet?

 I think we should call this one, "Lemon Curd"

 ........and how about blueberry pie?

I think I may be getting hungry.  Food names come to mind. 

Happy Knitting!


  1. Wow! What a neat experience! You did make me hungry just reading about your day dying yarn. Now, I have to go look up "Roving". ;-)

  2. Thank you for posting this, very interesting!!! How have you been?