Brazilwood and mordants

Today I wanted more colour. I followed a recipe from for using their Brazilwood powder and tried it on both alum and iron mordanted fleece.  The iron went a good grey but the alum ended up a peachy coral colour.  I would have liked it a little darker I think, but then I'm not the most patient person in the world and I didn't leave it to sit in the dye bath overnight but only for an hour or so.

Next up was a mordanting session ready for dyeing with cochineal the next day.  I'd wanted to try this, probably only the once though.  I'm not entirely sure about the ethics of crushed beetles but it is good to see for myself the colour achievable.  Anyway I prep'd fibre with Iron, Alum and Bichromate of Potash, which is light sensitive so had to be kept in a pan with the lid on.  Really I suppose I should have done that one just before dyeing.

Late into the evening I squeezed in one more dye session.   I'd used a bunch of Shallots for tea so, rather than leaving them liggin about, I used up the skins suspecting they'd be much like onion skins that we used to use on hard boiled eggs at easter.  They did surprise me though.  Not so much orange as a brilliant baby chick yellow !  How very "easter" of me !

Looking forward to seeing pinks and reds tomorrow.

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