The second Thursday arrived very early this month. I was glad I had been wanting to dye some fabric using turmeric. Please join me as I make a mess and learn a lot about this spice.
Before I begin, though, I want to reiterate that you should never, ever, ever, EVER use the measuring tools that you use in your craft room to cook food with. Although what we are working with today are food grade ingredients, it's just a good habit to keep craft tools and supplies and food tools and supplies separate. These are cheap tools that you can find at your thrift store, garage sales, and dollar/pound stores.
Like a fool, I decided to double the recipe.
every bit of my alum
and an entire tin of turmeric. Of course, I had to spill it as I was trying to get the last of the 8 T out.
I learned from last month's black bean dyed fabric that I needed to find a better way of tying off the fabric. So this time, I grabbed my waxed thread and tied the fabric using it. I also tried to clean up the spilled turmeric and alum. BTW, the fabric is another piece of the same bed sheet I used last month.
Since I had misjudged how much this batch would make, I decided to dye some other pieces, too. Here I have both wide and narrow bias tapes. I like to find white whenever I can, because that way I can dye it any color I choose.
I still had loads of room in the dye bath I intended to heat in my microwave,
so I grabbed another smaller piece of the same bed sheet.
I heated the fabric and dye bath for six minutes in my microwave, then removed it.
I was shocked that the turmeric had not dissolved.
I grabbed two pieces of wool felt and plunged them in the hot dye bath, hoping this would stir the turmeric. Then I allowed the fabric and dye bath to sit overnight.
I realize the turmeric did not perform as planned, but I still got excellent results.
I saved the turmeric and alum mix, because I plan to try this again as soon as I feel better. However, the next time, I plan to use my stove and stainless steel pot to "cook" and dye the fabric.
Even the rinse water was filled with color and turmeric.
After I cut the strings, I saw the bits of fabric threads that had turned a golden yellow, and I got the idea to color some white thread. I have TONS of white thread, so this seemed like a good idea. I placed the spool in one of the jars and shook it. Once I pull it out of the dye bath, I'll show it on my blog.
But for now, here are the results of my experiment. From left to right are the two pieces I scrunched up and tied together. Next is the long piece I started with. Then there are the two bias tapes that I allowed to dry in that shape.
Color me impressed! And look at that mottled fabric. I attribute that to the fact I didn't wet my fabric before placing it in the dye bath.
The wool felt was less impressive, but I was still pleased with the subtle color I achieved.
If you look closely, you can tell there is mottling there, too.
As I was snapping away, I didn't notice the wasp that had taken a liking to the turmeric.
I was more concerned about the beauty I had achieved.
Once this is ironed,
I'm sure the various designs I made using the waxed thread will be useful.
This was even better than the black bean dyed fabric.
But, the wasp was still hanging around, and had now summoned a friend, too.
It was time for me to retreat to the porch and hope the wasp and his friend didn't follow me.
Once this post goes live, you will find it in my Tutorials under Dyeing Using Turmeric.
I am so grateful you chose to stop by today, even though the dye job was technically a bust because the turmeric didn't dissolve like it should have. But your continued support of these monthly tutorials makes it all worthwhile.