I thought I would update and maybe spend some more time on my blog detailing what I have been doing fiber wise.
Last week the girls and I spent two days at Travellers Rest in Nashville. I demonstrated methods of natural dyeing. Bella was my helper most of the time and Emma helped my friend who weaves baskets.
I used turmeric in a cast iron pot over a fire. Cast iron is not what dyers would be using in the colonial times. They would use copper since it is non-reactive. Iron pots throw iron into the dye bath as the temperature rises and as the day goes on. This results in the darkening of the color. So if I keep my pot at a certain temp all day (hard to do over a fire) I get beautiful golden yellow. I also used an enamel pot filled with a walnut dye bath. It takes longer but I don't heat this pot. The tannins in walnut do all of the work. It started a bit orangey but as the day went on it changed to a lovely brown. For fun, and for the "take this home and do it yourself" project, I had jars of Kool aid dye set up. This was something that each kid was excited about trying with their parents.
At home my projects are varied and never ending it seems. I have piles of fleece to be washed and carded and spun. I have some that just need to be spun. I have at least two projects on knitting needles waiting to be finished. And the yarn around here seems to multiply.