tisiphone: (personal blogging)
Have any of you done any dyeing with woad? What are your thoughts on the process?

Date: 2013-07-25 08:12 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile] tylik.livejournal.com
Yes, but not for 25 years. The process I used was kind of stinky, and a little involved (I was modifying a historical recipe, but using commercial ammonia rather than making my own from urine) but it worked just fine. I even illegally grew woad for the experiment.

Date: 2013-07-25 08:18 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile] tisiphone.livejournal.com
I'm starting from leaves too, though they're not illegal here! And yes, I think I'll be using dilute ammonia rather than my own urine, because yuck. I've had a look, and it seems like recipes are either your basic chop, boil, steep, ammoniate, aerate and dip-dye, or are some sort of complex fermentation process. I suspect the neighbours would prefer if I did it the short way and not the fermenting way. How hard was it to keep air bubbles out? (This is my first foray into dying.)

Date: 2013-07-25 10:55 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile] tylik.livejournal.com
Is it restricted in all of the US? I mean, the PNW is practically crying "come, turn me into a vast expanse of woad!" but I wouldn't think it would be as invasive elsewhere. (Even at 16, I was very careful about cutting off seed pods before they could mature.)

I used one of the fermented recipes, but I was mostly interested in the historical process. But let me see (I should have a book here...) Jenny Dean (Wild Color) shows some really nice results using color run remover and washing soda, though she also gives directions for a urine bath and yeast vat (though the colors there are more prosaic.)

Date: 2013-07-26 11:18 am (UTC)From: [identity profile] pir.livejournal.com
Just remember, when you put the mixture together you add the normal amount and then have one for the woad.

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