Shibori with Madder

While the yarn was curing, I decided to put a few pieces of fabric into the dye bath and see what would happen. I mordanted a piece of silk with alum acetate and then folded, stitched, clmaped and tied them. I left them in the dye bath for a week. The daily temperature has been in the high 80F. In the pot, I think it reached about 100F.


This is what the fabric scraps looked like after a week. It took several days before the color started to show, but once it did, it developed quickly. I will let it cure for a few days before I rinse them.

The dye bath still had color but it really started to smell. So, out it went.

Madder Photo


I pulled these 2 skeins out from the dye bath a week ago. I was not able to get it to rinse clean so I left it out to cure for the week. Today, I put it back in rinse water and color is still coming out. I’ve never had madder to this before. I’m not sure what to do next. I can’t use it as long as the color continues to come out of it.

The above photo isn’t representative of the final color. The color is rather weak when the yarn is dry.

Madder Progress #4

Well, if I hadn’t bricked it before, I certainly have now!

I turned the stove on to warm the bath up while I attended to some guild business online. Needless to say, things took longer than expected and the pot came to a full boil.

I’ll check the color this evening, after it has had a chance to cool off. I’m expecting a nice brick color.

Madder Progress #3


After several days of heating and cooling in the pot, the colors are more saturated but also duller. Did I overheat it? Or is the difference due to the different cameras used to take these pictures. (#2 was taken with my iPhone, this was with my Canon Point & Shoot.) I also did not take the skeins out and squeeze out all the water.

I will be patient. It’s not my best suit, but I am committed to letting this sit in the dye pot for a full week. There is still color in the dye bath.

Madder Progress #2


I’m a little disappointed. The second skein (left) isn’t as vibrant nor as saturated as the first skein (right). I don’t know if it is because the first bath exhausted the most vibrant colors or because I overheated the second bath. The second bath reached 180F. While not a simmer, it was definitely warmer than I wanted it to be.

I’ve put both skeins back in the bath and will let them sit for the remainder of the week, with an occasional warming up. Thankfully, it will be a warm week (80F) and I can let the sun do most of the work for me after the initial warming in the morning.