The first thing we did was learn about everyone and their experience or reason for interest in natural dyes. We met Rennie, Fannie, Shunda, Otis and Xavier.
Sarah showed how and why we scour fabric.
Also, we described the mordanting process.
Everyone began to immerse their scoured and mordanted fabric into separate bins of water to soak the fabric.
The first dye we worked on setting up was cochineal (pink) which is actually tiny bugs that live on cactuses.
Otis is breaking the black walnuts
Here is Fannie dipping fabric into madder (red) so it can soak for a long time.
We must boil some of the dyestuff like the marigolds and the cochineal bugs before we put fabric in.
While we are waiting to extract color from the dyes on the stove, Ali is demonstrating how to refresh a Thiox indigo vat.
While we wait for the indigo mixture to change color into a yellow, we dip some more fabric to dye.
When the thiox mixture for the indigo changes color we can mix it in with the batch to refresh it.
We begin to dip fabric in both the Thiox and the fermented vat of indigo.
Fannie is checking on the cochineal.
After that we take out the first marigold yellow fabric. Then we do more indigo dyeing.
Close to the end of the day we discussed all of the colors and the steps it took to make the ones we did that day.
This is the stepdown marigold. We took half the batch of the first marigold and this stepdown marigold and would overdye them with indigo to make green.
The first marigold dip in indigo was brighter than the other.
At the end of day they showed us a couple of quilts and their different patterns.