Organic Dyeing with “Blood Madder” Concentrated Powder Extract

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On a wintery day during our February school break, I did some organic fabric and fiber dyeing. This time I used “Blood Red Madder,” concentrated powder extract. My source for this vegetable dye was Organic Plus.

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I decided to try a little experiment. Two dye baths were set using the same selection of pre-washed and mordanted fabrics:  cottons, linen and cotton canvas. The first dye bath,  set up in a stainless steel pot, stayed on my heated stove top for the entire dyeing process. Fabrics from that bath are pictured above. In the second dye bath, set up in a 5 gallon bucket, I used hot water but did not cook it on the stove top. Those fabrics from the second dye bath are pictured below.

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You can see that the fabrics from the first heated dye bath did produce slightly darker, richer colors, but honestly it wasn’t a significant difference. If I had enough large stainless pots, I would probably keep the baths on the constant heat, but I was also pleased with the dyed fabrics from the second unheated dye bath. Good to know, in a pinch, that you can still get some beautifully colored dyed fabric samples without the constant heat and cooking!

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I also dyed rayon bias ribbon, cotton Cluny Lace and bobbins of cotton embroidery floss, pictured above. What a yummy bounty of warm and cool pinks and rose blushes. I am thrilled with the range of colors from both my batches of fabrics and fibers.

Can’t wait to incorporate these goodies in sewing and stitching projects!

What kinds of colorful makes are you creating these cold winter days?!