My first solo adventure in indigo dyeing
Right, so to be perfectly transparent, this blog post has been sitting in draft form since halfway through 2021, when I did the actual dyeing in February of that year. But now I've actually USED some of this yarn in pieces I'm selling, and it'd be great to have a page to link to that explains some of my process.
This was the first time I created an indigo pot all on my own. I used natural indigo purchased from Botanical Colors and did a calx/fructose extraction.
I made up skeins of practically ANY undyed yarn I had on hand, cotton in a few weights and spins, silk-alpaca blend, 100% silk, silk-hemp, 100% alpaca, even some mystery unlabeled yarn and some pre-made scrunchies and the hem of a dress I'd just finished sewing.
Of course I scoured all the fiber first. NEVER SKIP THIS STEP! You'd be surprised how much "gunk" is coating your brand new fibers - oils used in the machine spinning process and dust from factories and shipping.
I dipped each of the skeins anywhere from two times to 8 times to get the biggest variety of intensity of blues.
I mentioned I also dip-dyed the hem of a handwoven dress I'd just finished sewing. I am SO PLEASED with how it turned out!
I used to make myself a "birthday dress" each year, but lost track of the tradition when life got busy. This was the first year in awhile I came back to the goal, and I couldn't be happier with it. Years later, this dress is still one of my favorite handwoven, hand dyed, hand sewn garments that comes out when I feel my best.
I promise I wont wait two years before writing about my next adventures with indigo dyeing, and I'll make sure ALL the details get added before they're forgotten.