Random thoughts of a fiber enthusiast - mostly fiber related, sometimes coherent

Madder Progress

Silk/Wool yarn, au naturel

Silk/Wool yarn, au naturel

After 12+ hours at low temperature High of 110F for an hour or two, but left to sit out overnight, off heat.

After 12+ hours at low temperature. High of 110F for an hour or two, but left to sit out overnight, off heat.

Isn’t this a gorgeous color? It reminds me of the Buddhist monk’s robes. That’s the ubiquitous silk square that I put in my dye pots for my notebook.

Second skein in the reheated dye bath.

Second skein in the reheated dye bath.

I didn’t have room for the second skein yesterday so I took out the original skein and exchanged it for the undyed skein. I’ll let it sit for the day to “catch up”. I’ll add the original skein back in tonight and let them sit in the bath together for the remainder of the dye period.

I have added calcium carbonate (CaCO3) to make the water alkaline. At Phyllis’, her tap water was bang on neutral (7.0 pH), whereas my tap water was closer to 5.5. I had to add a lot more CaCO3 to shift it to at least a pH of 8.5 or so. I think I’m going to need to buy more CaCO3.

Edited: After a re-check, I have 6.25 pH from the tap. I think I wasn’t letting the pH strips sit in the water long enough. According to the latest water quality report, my water is supposed to be around 8.5 pH, but I’m definitely not seeing that.

The idea is to keep the water below 160F and alkaline until I get a nice rich red. I will periodically heat up the water to about 120F or so over the course of the next week.


Red Handed!


Madder Progress #2

1 Comment

  1. Phyllis Karsten

    5.5! Your tap water must taste like vinegar!

    Your colors are beautiful – so clear and bright.


    PS: Glad you enjoyed the eggplant.

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