We are especially pleased at how well marigold mix dyes cellulose fibers. So it’s a great way to create that sunny yellow on cotton and linen. You can also use this extract to dye silk and protein fibers and create beautiful color combinations with the percentages below.
CLICK HERE for our post on setting up your dye studio.
- Marigold Extract
- A Dye Pot : Stainless Steel
- Heat Source : Stove Top, Hot Plate, Fire outside….
- Your Fiber : Natural fibers like cotton , hemp , silk or wool . We have a bunch of fabric for you to work with HERE.
- Scour your fabric according to its type.
- Mordant your fabric according to its type.
- Calculating the Amount of Dye to Use
- To calculate the amount of dye you want to use, you will first find out the weight of the material you want to dye. This is known as the Weight of Fiber (WOF). Weigh your textiles when they are dry to get the WOF. The amount of dye that you need is then calculated as a percentage of the WOF. For example, an average large cotton t-shirt weighs approximately 150g. For Liquid Logwood, you will want to use : .05% WOF for a light shade, 5-8% WOF for a medium shade and 10-15% WOF for a dark shade.
- Dissolving Your Dye : Make a paste using warm water and wet out the powder. Gradually add boiling water, stirring to dissolve. Some of the dyes like cutch will get quite sticky during this process. You can let these dyes sit for several hours or overnight and they will be easier to dissolve.
- Adding Dyes and Fibers to the Dye Pot : Fill the dye pot with water so that the fibers move easily. Add dissolved dyes and stir well. Add mordanted fiber to the cold dye pot and begin heating the water and bring to about 90 degrees F (33 degrees C), rotating the goods gently. Hold the fibers at this warm temperature for 30 minutes, then bring the temperature up gradually to 180 degrees F (80 degrees C), rotating gently. Hold at this temperature for 30-45 minutes rotating regularly.
- Letting Dyes Cool in the Dye Pot : This is largely a preference for dyers and is based on the observation that some colors will continue to deepen during cool down. However, fibers dyed with Saxon Blue should always be removed promptly once they are cool enough so you can handle them without burning yourself.
- Rinsing : Using the same temperature water as your fiber, rinse the dyed goods once or twice to remove excess dye, then wash gently in a neutral liquid soap. Dry away from direct sunlight.
- Reusing and Disposing of Dye Baths : Any exhaust baths with dye color left in them may be used to dye additional materials. I keep extra small skeins of mordanted wool yarn and throw those into the exhaust baths. There will usually be some residual color in the dyebath, even after using the exhaust bath. Dispose of the used dye baths in accordance with your local municipal guidelines.
Here’s a palette with natural dye recipes suitable for that end of summer transition where the light turns golden and the air cools. The Orange Red reminds us of the underside of a liquid amber leaf; the Bright Olive is a neutral, gray-green, and the Creamy Beige is surprising in that we don’t often think about dyeing light tan shades, but this one is easy and elegant. Follow the first steps of scouring, mordanting and weighing your fibers and use these percentages to achieve these beautiful hues.
Orange Red (on silk fabric)
15% Aluminum sulfate mordant
4% madder extract
Bright Olive (on cotton muslin)
5% Aluminum Acetate mordant
5% pomegranate extract
2% marigold mix extract
1%rich logwood purple
Creamy Beige (on silk fabric)
15% Aluminum sulfate mordant
4% Quebracho Moreno
It is always best to use pH neutral soaps for your natural dyes. This means ecological brands that don’t contain optical brighteners or any sort of Once you are finished with your project you will want to wash ( in your washing machine – separate from other garments ) on a hot cycle to bleed out the excess dye. After this initial washing, it is recommended to hand wash or wash on a delicate cycle to preserve the longevity of your pieces. Always wash wool by hand as to not felt the fibers.