I love the yellows I got from the yellowdock roots. Love.
It took two tries, but the second one worked out well.
I washed copious dirt from the roots, then pared them down into small pieces. They are so vibrant and beautiful.
Per the recipe, I boiled the roots for an hour. Over that hour, the roots and dyestock became slowly, but surely, more and more black.
I was unsure where the black came from. I hadn’t seen anything about it in my reading, and was concerned that the black would affect the final colors, so I decided to start a second batch of the dock and do some comparison dyeing.
For this second batch, I soaked the dock overnight to saturate the pigment.
When I placed it in the dyepot, I used less water than I had in the first batch, changed the water every fifteen or twenty minutes, and saved each portion of water. I ended up with a less saturated—but yellow—dyestock.
I popped mordanted samples into 14 jars (two jars each for my seven mordants) and added seven equal portions of dye into into each set of jars.
After several days in the sun, here are the (rather lackluster) results from the blacker dyestock. Definitely some yellows with the alum and brass, but mild yellows. The yarns were rather mottled looking.
I was happier with the results from the yellower dye:
The fabrics are pretty cool looking:
Here are a few comparison shots. Unfortunately, in the first photograph, the mordant order runs opposite in the two rows. So on the top row of yellower yarns, the mordants are, from left to right, alum, brass, copper, iron, gelatin, soy, and urine. On the bottom row, the same mordants run from right to left. In the bottom photo, yarns sharing mordants are next to each other, beginning with alum at the bottom.
True yellows, hurrah! Vibrancy incarnate!