I thought that it would be fun to follow through on an experiment that some of my online friends were discussing and trying and give it a go myself. I have dyed many times, as so many of you have, with different natural elements and plants. They, however, were discussing nuts. Walnuts in particular, but here, I have pecans.
Pecan hulls to be exact. And, we tried eating the nuts. They were not ripe and we were all very sorry, as they tasted absolutely horrid. So, without any further ado, here is how it is done:
Pecan Hulls(will stain fingers and nails), Cast Iron Pot, Cream of Tartar (optional), fiber(mohair in this case), something to pour the dye into (I used a mason jar), colander, hand knit pot holders, wooden spoon and a bowl.
Put hulls without the nuts in the pot and bring to a boil. Simmer 1-2 hours. Stir with wooden spoon as needed.
Strain the hulls using a colander and bowl. Pour dye into jar to cool. It will keep for quite a while in the refrigerator, if you are not dyeing right away. (Please, use the pot holders!) The key to keeping your fiber from felting is not to shock it with extreme temperature changes, so you want you dye and fiber the same temperature during dyeing.
Wet your fiber and wring them out and put them in your pot with the dye (make sure they start off at approx the same temp or you could end up with felt). Mash your fibers into the mix until they are completely covered. Then heat them all up to a simmer. Simmer for, at least, 20 minutes. Take a lock out to cool and then rinse it to ‘test’ the color. The longer that it is in the darker it will get until it reaches its saturation point.
Step 4(optional, but I prefer):
Strain. Let dry.