For me, anticipation is a large part of the fun, whatever the fun is.
This week, I’ve been mordanting my ass off. I’m experimenting, trying new mordants, processes, and materials, and having a ton of fun, both in planning the processes, and in the mordanting itself. Anticipating the dyeing makes me pant and drool a little bit.
Materials are handspun wool and silk yarn, and wool and cotton yardage from the fabric store. (Yes, I bought something new. Why do you ask? I almost threw in the linen pillowcases I bought at Thrift Town last month.)
Mordants are alum, brass, copper, milk, soy, and yogurt. Yes, I got rid of the urine. Not because it was disgusting or anything—I weirdly liked it—but because it didn’t really produce anything interesting. I’ll happily go back to it, if I can find a specific recipe. Where’s my water glass?
This was my kitchen counter a few days ago. It got worse before it got better.
We’ve got a dye pot, a scale with a pile of alum on it, alum, cream of tartar, a dye-dedicated measuring cup, wool and silk yarn soaking in bowls of water. At right we have a dish of tannin extracted from an acorn windfall I found on a hike in Chico, the food processor that ground the acorns for me, and of course the necessities of life: a kettle, coffee, and half and half.
There is no dyeing without the necessities.