New Look

October 18, 2009

Color Me Pink

Well, I can't believe it's been so long since I've been able to do much on the computer.  My big computer crashed and with it so many pictures and documents were lost.  I can't dwell on it...
The season of riding my bike ended and the first snow fall has occurred.  The wind and rain have driven me indoors and to increase my metabolism I did a little felting. .... and, of course, some dyeing.

The pokeberrie juice/dye bath was absolutely fab...a deep wine.  And although it is said they are poisonous, the juice was used to color wine.  I believe it.  I rolled one piece of silk I had dyed with cochineal that was a lovely pale peachy color around the stems and a few berries then tied it very tight.  The second piece I tried dipping and make a gradient...but...have I told you I am impatient?  Well, I left it and that gorgeous color spent the night creeping forward until the entire piece of silk was fushia.

I did add some acetic acid for a mordant....and I did let the pieces dry before rinsing.  But all that wonderful color went down the drain. 

Pastels are what I got.  That blood colored spot on one of the pink pieces is cochineal that dried overnight sitting out of the pot.  The green .... and it actually is more green than the dye pot from the black-eyed susans I picked from the back yard.  The color of the initial bath was a deep gold and when I added the mordant....flash.....the color changed in the pot to a wonderful dirty yellow green.  The last piece was a pure white placed in a jar with walnut ink.

My fingers retained more stain than the silk did, I'm afraid.  I think I need to go back and do a little more research and experimentation with the pokeberry.  I truely loved that fushia. 

Felt....yes I worked on the quilt pieces.  The first I was very happy with and it will for certain make a place for itself in the big quilt.  It is Chicory.  It grows wild everywhere I've been in the United States.  It is not a native...but I dearly love it.  Each flower only comes out for a day but the long thin stalks wave each bloom proudly late in the summer when other flowers are finished.

The colors of the chicory and the mottled green background played perfect in this piece. 

 However, the second piece I did was of a small yellow lily.  I have an sketch of it from a hike once, but tried to catch it's fragility with the natural dyes.  I think the pounding from the fulling rinsed most of the yellow from the background and the leaves....leaving blue.  But the flower itself was a piece of the tumeric and withstood the whole process well.

I am more enchanted with the colors of fall right now.  They have reached their peak here in New England....and my drive to work it one of fabulous fall colors spreading from pinks, fushias, yellows, organges, reds and nutty browns set to the greens of the pines.

   This is a cell phone picture on my way to work.  But the colors are even more intense where I can't stop...but will be blown away after this weekends rain and wind.  There is a 50% chance of snow tomorrow...