Saturday, September 24, 2016

Purple Carrots in the Dye Pot

Having seen some interesting results from people who have dyed fabric with purple carrots, I decided to give it a try myself this week.  These beautiful carrots are from Notch Hill Organic Farm and the ones that made it into our meals were very tasty.

I grated the carrots and put them in a cheesecloth bag (hoping to use the cheesecloth in some later project, too). They were simmered in a large pot and then I added a piece of linen and two pieces of silk.

Initially, the purple colour was totally gorgeous but it gradually became quite grey so I removed some of the dye to a second pot in order to experiment with additives.  I added some vinegar to the large pot and it went back to true purple. I added a bit of soda ash to the second pot and it went greenish-purple (I had put a piece of linen in that pot to check those results).  I removed the first piece of silk from the big pot just in case I was to lose that colour again, but left the remaining silk and linen in there to simmer for a couple of hours and then to soak in the cooling dye pot for more than 24 hours.

The photo shows the linen on the left (lovely pale lilac) ... habotai silk in the centre, also a pale lilac ... the crepe de chine silk is on the right and it has the most intense colour.  These photos look quite a lot greyer than they are in real life.  The linen in the secondary pot did not hold the colour once it was rinsed.