Safflower is an amazing dye flower giving both yellow and bright pink from the same dye. Our Safflower Bandanna Kit lets you experiment with both colors. The plant is versatile and is the source for oil and birdseed, but the deep red-orange flower petals are the source of the dye called carthamin. This is a fun project to experiment with pH changes and natural dyeing. Safflower is not strongly light or washfast but with care, the color is bright and cheery.
The kit includes two cotton bandannas, safflower petals, citric acid and soda ash. One of the bandannas is pre-treated with mordant and ready for the yellow dye bath. The second bandanna is for the pink dye bath and there is enough dye to get a rich pink color. The kit comes with step-by-step instructions.
Did you know, in Ancient Egypt, safflower brightly dyed bindings used to wrap mummies as well as provided an orange tint to ceremonial ointments used in religious rituals? Garlands of the blossoms were placed in tombs (such as the pharaoh Tutankhamun), with the intent of providing comfort to the deceased in afterlife. Charred safflower plants were used to make Egyptian Kohl (cosmetic eyeliner). Safflower oil was also used to light the lamps of the pharaohs.
We’ve dyed cotton, hemp, silk and wool yarn with this recipe, and each fiber turns out a little different. It’s a lot of fun and you can soak the fabrics in the dye baths overnight for deeper shades.