Thursday, October 8, 2009

Natural Dying and Having Great Fun at International Day of Felt

The past couple of weeks I have been very busy doing some experimenting with Natural dying with Black Berries on several different kinds of material. I used some lovely Icelandic wool and curls which turned out a pinkish lavender color. The curls did not seem to take the Black Berry very well. I also used plain muslin and cheese cloth and some laces which turned out to be a very pretty muted lavender color which I really liked allot. The process I used to dye my fibers is called "Making Natural Dyes from Plants-Pioneer Thinking" and is explained below. My friend Jasmine in the UK at "Nature Whispers" shared this site with me.

In the left pot I prepared my fibers by simmering them in hot water for one hours in 1/2 cup of salt to 8 cups of water. To make the dye solution double the amount of water to berries. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about an hour. After the fabrics and wool was simmered in the hot salt water bath I rinsed them with warm water.


This is what my fibers looked like after 24 hours of soaking. I then washed the fibers in my kitchen sink with mild soap and cold water until the water was clear. I then dry the fibers over a small drying line outside. Then I iron the fabrics and lace. A few weeks ago I also dyed some muslin with Blue Berries which turn out to be a muted shade of Lavender too.

I really enjoy creating wet wool felted balls. Above is a photo of the Blue Berry dyed muslin and my wee wet felted wool ball from Merino Wool.

October 3rd was "International Day Of Felt". 2009 was designated by The United Nations as the International Year of Natural Fibers. Felt Makers around the world celebrated by joining together and displaying their lovely felt.

I traveled to visit "Barbara at Marr Haven Wool Farm" in Allegan Michigan who was hosting an event to celebrate The International Day of Felt. Above is a photo of Barbara in front of her shop standing beside a lovely wet wool felted banner in beautiful shades of Orange. Barbara also created the lovely wool hat she was wearing along with the knitted vest. Thanks Barbara for hosting this wonderful day for us.

At the door of Barbara shop were corn stocks with very colorful Autumn Leaves wet felted by Barbara.

Above is some fibers I bought from Barbara Fiber Shop. I also bought the book called
"Water Color Felt Workbook by Pat Sparks". The other two books I bought at the Northern Michigan Lamb and Wool Festival a couple of weeks ago.

The above photo was taken inside of Barbara's shop. Lots of very lovely fibers.

Here is a display of very beautiful wet wool felted jackets created by Sue Pufpaff. Sue owns "Pufpaff's Fiber Processing Mill".

This display of very colorfully and lovely scarfs were created by Barbara. I truly enjoyed my day of felting and shopping. It was really great spending time with very creative felted maker who willingly shared their felt making talents with us all. Thanks to all.
I am feeling a bit sad that I have been so busy I have not had time to visit my blogging friends site or even stitch. We are going away again this whole weekend to visit with my family on the East side of Michigan. Long drive!! I hope to get back with my blogging friends next week. I have missed chatting with you all.



Jasmine said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful time. I love your big dye pots. Your process seems different to mine...

Your results are beautiful x

Miss 376 said...

Sounds like a wonderful day. I did some dying with onion skins with youngest son some years ago. I can't remember why, lol

RagJó said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful time with these creative ladies. Oh how fun it must be to meet so many people with similar interests :-)
Love your berry dyed fabrics and Icelandic wool :-)

Jane said...

Can't wait to see what you whip up this winter with all your summer "findings". All this wool in all it's forms is so colorful. Hope you enjoyed your trip to see the kids.

Kayla coo said...

I love natural dying, the blackberries are a beautiful shade.
Thanks for sharing your photo's.x

Charmingdesigns said...

Oh wow oh wow. I love the idea of dying with natural findings!! I'm going to go check out the site...I still have to like my Koolaid for making

Heather said...

Judy... I love this post! I love dying with natural things - the less "junk" we can put into the environment, the better off we will all be - and the results are just wonderful. Great job! Hugs.

acornmoon said...

Such lovely soft colours, I love those hats!

Have a great weekend with your family.

Bev C said...

The colours in these felted items are just amazing. Glad to hear you had a great time. Happy days.

Chrissie said...

Loved seeing your experiments with the dye pot - so adventurous! And thanks for sharing the photos of your fun on the International Day of Felt.
Do let us see how you get on making your CL-inspired purse - can't wait!

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