October 23, 2016

Rabbit Brush (Chamisa) Dye Bath

By Molly Zimmer, Kaitlin Bryson, Hollis Moore
Wild Rivers, NM

September 26, 2016

  1. Rusty Can Mordant with Tannic Acid from Chestnut Bark
    • Fill pot with 1 tbsp of vinegar for every cup of water
      1. Our pot holds 20 Cups of Water, and we used all the vinegar we had (approximately 13 tablespoons)
    • Add rusty objects and bring to boil
    • Boil for 60 to 90 minutes (over wood fire or propane stove)
    • Add fibers to mordant and boil for 60 minutes
    • Cool, Rinse and let Dry

Start: 11:00am
Stop: 1:00pm
Total: 2 hrs (1hr with mordant, and 1hr with fibers added)

Fibers Before Beginning Mordant and Dying Process (mix of animal and plant fibers)

Collected rusty can mordant at Wild Rivers: 2 pieces of rusty wire, one bottle cap, one rusty nail, one rusted metal strap, 2 newly opened aluminum cans

Added 3 Tbsp of Tannic Acid to Mordant Bath, Let Fibers sit for 5hrs in Solution

Resulting Dyed Fibers with Tannic and Rusty Can Mordant

      2.   Rabbit Brush (Chamisa) Dye Bath
  • Heat Rabbit Brush for 1hr in pot
  • Let sit overnight or all day
  • Re-heat dye solution with blossoms to extract all dye for 1hr
  • Strain out blossoms
  • Add dye fabric
  • Re-heat and boil with fibers for 1hr
  • Let sit for 24hrs in solution with fibers
  • Rinse and Dry

New Fibers (unmordanted) for Dye Bath

Collected Rabbit Brush from along the Roadside, and stripped off all the blossoms.

Rabbit Brush in Fire Golden Dye Solution
Fibers Boiling in Dye Solution

Resulting Rabbit Brush Dyed Materials


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