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Monday, November 17, 2008

Magic Yellow Cosmos

The flowers of yellow cosmos are not only a beauty in the garden, they also yield a variety of vibrant colours.

I'll give a short overview of a few colours you can achieve with this wonderful flowers.

The yellow and orange flowers both give the same results. I haven't tried other cosmos.

The wool is first mordanted with alum. A mordant is needed to fix the dye to the fibers. I use the natural rock alum, I am lucky to have a supplier in this area.

After boiling the flowers in water, I put the wool in the dyebath and let it boil until desired colour intensity. This will give a yellow colour.

Now the fun starts. We can modify the yellow colour in many different ways:

-soak in water with vinegar: the colour will turn more into a lemon yellow.

-soak in water with soda: this yields a bright orange.

-soak in rusted nail water (this is obtained by putting rusted nails in water and vinegar for at least a few days): you'll get an olive green.

-soak in rested nail water, rinse and soak in soda water: the wool becomes rust brown to dark warm brown.

I only use natural and non toxic ingredients in my natural dye techniques. This keeps it safe for me and for the planet.

One of my result with yellow cosmos dyes:


2 comments:

fontainefleurie said...

Hi Lizet, I'am from the Netherlands. At this moment it is almost wintertime, no flowers are left. I have a friend who has a huge flower-picking field during from May untill September. One of her favourite flower is cosmos. I cannot wait untill it is summertime again, and picking all those wonderfull flower which are usefull for dying. It feels good that I have found you trough the working-with-felt. love Dorie
ps I will make a link to you on my other weblog www.dovadi.web-log.nl/fiberfusing

mpalmero said...

Hi, Lizet. That vest is so pretty! I never thought yellow cosmos could be used as a dye. Hmm, now I've got an idea. I absolutely love this flower. In fact, I even downloaded this yellow cosmos wallpaper for my computer to refresh my eyes every now and then.

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