I did a bit of bundling yesterday and had a pot with iron and a pot with copper simmering.
Working towards a couple shows in the fall, I pulled out some Goodwill specials along with some pieces that I had mudded over the weekend (and which washed out almost completely; I now know the limits of the retention agent!) A quick trip around the yard yielded a number of different leaves, most of which I had not yet tried for their dyeing abilities.
To the yard gatherings I added some onion skins plus cranberries and dogwood pips that I had frozen last fall. I also had on hand some dried American smokebush leaves and some florist eucalyptus (dollar euc?) that I had been saving.
I can say with certainty that osage orange leaves do NOT give off color even though the bark and roots are great. I’ve got a couple of the small balls bundled in a pot that is cooling at the moment but I’m not expecting much of anything from them, either.
Locust leaves came through nicely.
The surprises were: determining that the maple is now ready to use – lots of nice, dark almost black;
the American smokebush gave off an almost black while I was expecting to see a yellow;
and red bud leaves and seed pods do just as good a job as the wild black cherry has in the past! I think it may become my new go-to leaf since the wild black cherry was cut down this winter. More pictures when I unbundle the next group.
4 Replies to “New finds”
Oooh. I love the locust and the maple. Will it stay that way or wash out? It’s so lovely to have the leaf shape on the fabric. How do you “bundle”?
Penny – as long as you wash it nicely, the leaf prints will stay. Not guaranteeing how long, though. But if/when it does fade too much, you can always print again! Bundling: lay plant material on cloth, fold and wrap around a stick (or just wrap) and simmer in water about 2-3 hours. I also add either rusty nails for an iron mordant or pieces of copper for that mordant. Sometimes called Eco-printing or contact dyeing. I think the guild might have India Flint’s book on it.
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Lovely! I so wish we had scooped up some of that deep red mountain soil in Wyoming. We never found easy access to it without risk of a fine… But that gives me an excuse to travel back and continue the hunt! What we do for art! Beautiful bundling Judy!
Thanks, Susan! Good red dirt can be found all over – just keep those baggies and an old spoon in the car…!
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