Friday, 29 March 2013

Dyes I Have Made With Salt or Vinegar Mordants

I prefer alum as a mordant as it has given me more consistently 'exciting' results. By exciting I mean that the wool has taken the dye well and the colours tend to be deep shades of whichever colour.Salt and vinegar still have their place though, since they can both be bought easily at the supermarket, and there are still nice colours to be had.

Here are some of my results:

I thought that I had done something wrong with this one, but according to various places on the internet, beetroot just doesn't dye wool pink like you would think it does!

The second, brighter colour is wool mordanted with alum. I think with turmeric it doesn't make too much difference which mordant (if any) is used as it stains so easily.

There is a slight tint to this one, but nothing special. When I first dyed it it looked more orangey because the little bits of pepper were stuck to the yarn. I wouldn't have bothered with it at all but my housemates were convinced it would work! 

Here are the salt mordanted dyes:

The salt mordanted skein is actually a rather beautiful grey but I can't seem to capture it in a photograph...

As you can see, these colours are quite dull and similar to each other. I'm sure more exciting results can be achieved but I got my alum delivered and have used that for everything ever since!



  1. Hi Can you tell me which vinigar you used,? I don't know whether to try malt, or white or something else. I wanted to use natural dyes from plants. Also, where do you get alum from? and in what form? as far as I know Alum is a plant family. Thank you

  2. Hi Julie, sorry for the delay in my reply. I used malt vinegar as it was cheap! I bet you could probably use white too though. I purchased alum from eBay - just type in aluminium potassium sulphate and look for small white crystals. Let me know if you need anything else and I'll try and answer more quickly next time!



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