Lupin Dyed Fibre Results

Results Are In!

Results Are In!

Fibre is dry and braided into mini braids. I couldn’t be happier with the results. The star of the show still is that yellow! I love the colours, from a slight peach to buttery yellow to light gray and a warm light tan.

The modifiers I used were iron, cream of tartar, soda ash, and citric acid (not in that order). I used 10% weight of fibre for my alum mordant and 2% to 10% on modifiers. My weight of lupin leaves was very minimal and not weighed.

Hand dyed with Lupin Leaves
Lupin and Modifiers

I would say this is a win! I will add these to my collection of combed top experiments for now and spin with them this winter when I’m craving colours from my garden.



Lupin Leaves

My experiment dyeing combed top with Lupin leaves.

I’m bummed. I threw one lupin plant into the compost as it wasn’t flowering. Then I found out you dye with the leaves. Oh well, lesson learned. At least I have one plant left, so I got busy and harvested the leaves I did have.

I used a burner that was advertised to cook a Turkey last thanksgiving. I filled it up a quarter and then added the leaves. I simmered the leaves for an hour and then turned the burner off and let it sit still till the next morning. The following day I poured off the dye bath and divided the liquid into four different pans.

Turkey cooker

In each pan, I put some alum mordant (10% WOF) and the following modifiers: citric acid, iron, cream of tartar, and soda ash. The fibres I used were Polwarth, blue-faced Leicester, and cheviot. I simmered the wool for an hour and then let it sit all day to cool. I have to say this one with soda ash pops with colour! The yellow is like a butter yellow. The dye bath with iron looks like sadden yellow which is what iron does.

Butter yellow
Sadden with iron

It’s now 8:30pm and I will let it sit till tomorrow morning.


On A Quest For Fibre Dyed Fibre With Lupin

Please remember that this camera is not picking up the complete saturation of colour. Once it’s dry, I will take pictures in my usual spot with high contrast in the background. I just really wanted to share my experience with you as soon as I could

I love the combed top at the bottom. The dye recipe to obtain this colour will be kept in my recipe book for future dyeing for sure! The other shade I’ll keep is the top one done with iron. I wouldn’t use this colour on its own, but with another colour, I would use it for sure.

Well, I better move on, as today is the day I go to Knit City in Vancouver, BC. If you see me, please make sure you stop and introduce yourself; I love to meet my followers in person.



Pomegranate & Combed Top

Results are in! I am surprisingly pleased.

To prepare the combed top I first made sure I had four individual dye baths so I could modify each dye bath. I used a food warming appliance. I find this appliance keeps the heat at a constant low temperature so I could avoid felting the top. Next…

  1. I presoaked four 50g bundles of combed top for 30 minutes in a large plastic pail.
  2. I dissolved 7.5g of alum in each dye bath and brought the temperature up to luke warm.
  3. I then measured out 2.2g of extract and placed that in each dye bath. To get a variation of colour from the one extract I had to change the ph of the water by adding citric acid (this lowers the ph and I lowered it to 2), ammonia (this raises the ph and I raised it to 11).
  4. I also put ferrous sulfate in one dye bath (1g). This is how I got the light gray colour.
  5. Once I got the ph that I wanted I added the 50g of wet combed top.
  6. I kept the water temp just above warm to the touch for an hour.
  7. Then I turned off the heat and left the fibre sit in the dye bath overnite.
  8. I drained the fibre, rinsed it with a ph neutral soap; I used Unicorn Fibre Rinse, and then hung them to dry.

I also added to each dye bath a 25g mini skein of organic Superwash Merino/Nylon (80/20).

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about this experiment. When I do this again I want to double the amount of extract to each dye bath. I’ve also been told I can get a forest green from pomegranate. I will need to research this some more.

Watch this video to see all the braids up close and make sure you subscribe to this YouTube channel to see more experiments with extracts, plants and vegetables. Oh and make sure you follow my shop to see the batts I make with my botanical dyed combed top. I know I will be using these in a batt too.

Thank you,