Wednesday, August 10, 2011

into the dye-pot: red amaranth




A dye bundle in a red amaranth solar dye. I don't know that I can wait a whole month, as India suggests in Eco Colour.

These amaranth plants are self-seeded from way, way back in time. Some are 6+ feet tall so they might be Giant Red, but I can't remember. I don't think they're Hopi. That's the thing about re-seeded gardens, unless you keep meticulous records, you lose track of things.

I love the way the leaves receive the sunlight while the blooms bow to the earth.

Do tell, has anyone solar-dyed with red amaranth and what was your result?

13 comments:

lynda Howells said...

waiting is so hard isn't it? l am getting betterx lynda

woman with wings said...

Lynda, well it's not near as hard now that I forget half of what I say and do!

liniecat said...

Wowee , what a cracking plant even if it gives no dye colour at all! Id never heard of it, its stunning.

Deb G said...

It's on my too try list... :)

Marie said...

The plant has a lovely rich color.
I look forward to seeing the fabric.
Fabulous statue with stones in the background :)

woman with wings said...

Lyn, it's a native grain that needs sun and heat. If you'd like to give it a whirl, I'll send you some seed later in the summer!

woman with wings said...

Deb, if you need seed, just holler!

woman with wings said...

Marie, I agree it's a gorgeous plant -- and it can take over an area very easily! Thanks!

Notjustnat said...

Wow, this is so rich in color. Did you used vinegar with it? I can't wait for a month to see the result either - Hugs Nat

woman with wings said...

Nat, I soaked the bundle in vinegar beforehand -- we'll see . . .

Gail said...

Just found this post and I have a question. I have lots of Hopi Red Dye amaranth in the garden and want to use it to dye wool. How do I extract the color from the flowers? And, what mordant to use when dying the wool?
Thanks
Gail

Peggy said...

Hi Gail, normally wool doesn't need a mordant for plant dyeing, but let me check my notes to see if I've written anything down about the Hopi red amaranth! I'll leave another comment in the next few days....

Peggy said...

Gail, I took terrible notes about this. What I do know is that I soaked it in vinegar first, then put in water in the sun with pieces of iron in the bundle and jar. I suspect the iron modified it quite a bit and that without the iron, it would have come out completely different. What I also know is that the color on this particular piece of cloth has held very well. It is a magical component in a larger piece that's been up on my design wall for a long time -- too long. I bet wool will take the color superbly. Good luck, I'd love to know how it comes out for you.