Thursday, October 24, 2013

Pokeweed Berry Dyeing

Natural dyeing is fascinating to me (Jennifer) and I finally gave it a try last week.  I dyed only 2 oz of fiber, but it gave me confidence and a super increased enthusiasm for dyeing next year.  A part of the garden is so going to be used for dye plants.  Oh yes.  I used the recipe from Harvesting Color by Rebecca Burgess and found the process incredibly simple, easy and non-toxic.  Yay!

Pokeweed berries are really beautiful and the birds love them!

I collected the required amount for 2 oz of wool and heated them according to the instructions.  Look at this mash!  White vinegar is the ticket to harness the color and make it resistant to fading in the sun.

After letting the roving simmer and sit for a while I ended up with a nice rope of yarn to spin.  I colored this!  Can you see my excitement?!  Lest you think I like to just stand in the flower beds, please note I'm standing next to the pokeweed plant!  I'm thinking with such a small amount of fiber some handspun/hand-dyed bracelets with little tree cookie buttons for securing are on the agenda for the week.


  1. Jen,

    I tried that a while back to dye a handkerchief. It came out a light pinkish color. I was going to try some other dyes but never did. I'll be interested to see what else you try.

    I've never seen a bird eat a pokeweed berry. I'll have to keep my eyes open for that.


    1. I spun up this little whip of fiber last night. It's almost ready for knitting! I have some japanese indigo in the barn I am hoping will set seed before it gives in to the cold. That plant gives blue!


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