Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Dyeing Yarn with Queen Anne's Lace

Another one of my natural dye experiments this summer was with Queen Anne's Lace.  In the summertime Queen Anne's Lace is a wildflower that flourishes in empty lots, along highways, and any other green space that does not get mowed.  These flowers remind me of spending summer "up north" at my grandparent's cottage as a kid.  They grew everywhere and where my favorite flowers to pick.  Now that I am making natural dyes, I knew I had to use Queen Anne's Lace somehow.
I started by going down to the railroad tracks one August day and cutting giant handfuls of Queen Anne's Lace like I was making a bouquet.  I needed at least 4 oz. of flowers to dye one skein of yarn.  Then I went through the cooking process, strained off the flowers, and dyed 3.5 oz. of wool mordanted in alum.  (You can read more about the dyeing process on my these previous posts.)

So far this has been my favorite dye as far as aroma.  Since Queen Anne's Lace is in the carrot family, it has a kind of spicy carrot scent while cooking.  The final product ended up being a light, bright yellow.  Stay tuned for more posts about ecodyeing!  I've dyed about 30 skeins of yarn this summer and fall, and now that the weather is cooler I'm catching up on my blogging.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Kozo Book- Art Book 4/14

At the beginning of the year I set a challenge for myself to make 14 Art Books in 2014.  I got a little sidetracked by my job and other projects, but I am still plugging away at the 14.  I finished three art books for events and exhibitions in the month of October.  Here is the first of the books I made for October.

Art Book 4/14 is called the Kozo Book.  I made it for the Morgan Conservatory's annual benefit and silent auction.  The organization gives sheets of handmade paper to artists, and asks them to make a piece out of the paper to donate for the benefit.  This year the papers were handmade kozo paper with chiri, and a kozo/gampi blend.

I decided to continue my theme of books with stick bindings, and used kozo branches for the binding.  The pages ended up being too flexible for the book to stand up on its own, so I created a stand for it out of book board.  Finally, I added kozo leaves cut from some of my naturally dyed papers.