Natural Suburbia. However they used food coloring instead of vegetables, so I kept looking some more. Pioneer Thinking offers some great resources including a list of what to use for each color. Lion's Brand has a neat article comparing colors that you get using a few natural dyes on wool yarn versus cotton yarn. (It got me thinking about what cotton yarn I have that I could use for a different experiment.) I also read several indepth articles on how to make natural dyes. I pinned all of these on my Children Crafts & Activities Board.
So Hazel and I went to the grocery store for dye ingredients. Ok, we went to the grocery store several times for dye ingredients. Mostly because I kept forgetting things or getting the wrong thing and some stores carried items and some did not. I also found some great large jars at The Christmas Tree Shop. I bought three of them so I have been working three at a time. On our first day, we used yellow onion skins, red onion skin and concentrated grape juice. Having read so many instructions, I soaked my yarn in water with a cup of white distilled vinegar for probably about 40 minutes while I made the dyes. I took each of my onion skins and put them in a pan with water (3 parts) and vinegar (1 part). I boiled the mixture and then let it simmer for a bit. Then I poured each one into a jar and put a skein of yarn in each one. For the grape juice concentrate, I put it in a jar with a cup of vinegar and three cups of water and then added yarn. Then we put the jars in the sun for the day.
To add more educational side to this activity you could discuss the history of natural dyeing. Wikipedia provides a nice history on natural dyes. It is interesting to do something that has been done for 5000 years!! Dorthea Calverley also has a nice history more having to do with pioneers of the US. I will be sharing two more days of dyeing (at least) including some more educational ideas.
To see the other days check out Day 2 and Day 3.
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