A few months back, I received a book from husband entitled Harvesting Color by Rebecca Burgess. It is a magnificent book about using natural resources to dye your yarn. As I glanced through the pages on Christmas break at my parents’ farm in Ohio, I knew this was the perfect book for me and for my future time there.
Well, the opportune time has come as my girls and I find myself living on the farm temporarily during this Spring. The only things in bloom on the farm right now are the daffodils and other delicate flowers. But on our drives, it is hard not to miss the forsythias bordering the roads and driveways.
The girls and I went to the other house in town and worked on clipping a bushel of forsythia branches. Back at the farm, they helped me to strip the petals which were then thrown in the pot to have their pigmentation extracted. They were such cheerful helpers and blessed me.
I made three attempts to turn yarn yellow.
Following the application of an iron mordant (90 minutes), I used a 2:1 ratio of forsythia bloom (6.9 oz) and Cascade 220 yarn (3.45 oz ). The result was a dark army green.
Following the application of an iron mordant (60 minutes), I used a 1:1 ratio of forsythia bloom (3.4 oz) and Ella Rae yarn (3.4 oz ). The result was a murky green.
Following the pre-washing (no mordant used), I used a 1:1 ratio of forsythia bloom (3.4 oz) and Ella Rae yarn (3.4 oz ). The result was a light butter yellow.
I am excited that this world of dyeing has been introduced to me, and I cannot wait to acquire more yarn and natural dyes to experiment with. Finding time to knit with it is the next challenge.
To read about our non-yarn adventures, you can follow me over at Polly’s Blog.