Saturday, April 5, 2014

Tea Dyes; experimenting w/ 8 teas

This week my dye day was focused on teas for dyes. 
Lately I've been working with this beautiful kid mohair and silk blend yarn from Itlay. 
One of my favorites. 
I thought I do a really simple test with some various teas.
Planning for this experiement, I knew I wanted to use cheap tea
so I headed to the Christmas Tree Shop. 
Found two bozes or of different varieties. 

Becase I wanted to test each flavor by itself but all at the same time, 
I set uo this double boiler method which works great and I often use when 
conducting other sample dye experiments. 

I taped the tea bags on the cupboard in the same order they were in the pot
so I wouldn't loose track. Some of the tea bag labels simply said 
"herbal tea" which wasn't any help to me.

There was no mordant used as black teas have a nartual occuring 

I let the jars sit in the steaming pot for about an hour,
then turned off the burner. 

I was really really hoping for the herbal dyes to give me more
but the black leaf Irish and English teas are lovely and rich.
Especially on the mohair/silk:) 

With each jar went in a tiny sample yarn that was presoaked/soured
and one tea bag.
If I do this again with say the pomegranite and raspberry, 
I'd like to experiment with 
premordanted yarn,
possibly doing a vinegar dip
and/or adding a few more tea bags
beacuse the tea made from it is 

Still I love the soft colors against the white. 
A really simple and fun experiement
and a fun things to do wtih your kids at home
your students in school
and could be a great one to do this summer 
with a solar/ sun tea method. 

for example- buy a box of cheap red berry tea of any flavor,
get out your large sun tea jar (if you have one) or any container.
dye your child's dress, shirt, nightie, any clothes of your own
or table linens
and let it sit in the sun tea for a few days:)

After they all dried, I gave them a little rinse (beacuse they were a little crispy)
and the yarn fluffed back up after drying and the colro didn't change. 

The Irish Breakfast Tea is my favorite color here by the way. 

P.S. you could also try this with your Easter Eggs this year.
My next post will be a tutorial about dyeing with veggie scraps and creating Latvian Easter Eggs. 

Happy Spring 


Pallas said...

What a fun experiment and nice color!

Lynn said...

I have done this with bulk purchased hibiscus tea but I never would have expected that colour from the Irish Breakfast!

Spinning at Port Fiber today - hope to see you there maybe?

I ordered a bunch of dye plant seeds this week - yippee!


Rachel said...

Thanks Ladies:) Yes, the next time I do this with a fruit tes I'm going to use the whole box! And I think set up a sun tea jar outside and maybe with rain water.

I wanted to come in yesterday but I was at home dyeing which was great too. I plan to come in again soon on a Thursday to card:)