Friday, 4 December 2015

Experiments with iron water

1 Eucalyptus dyed on silk noil
Quite a few images this time, the colours arn't great in the photos and don't really show the subtle variation in colours of the last few photos of iron dyeing.
The first four images are of dyeing I did on holiday in Rhodes, they were bundled and placed in a plastic drinking water bottle and left on the balcony for about 12 days, no direct sunlight.
These are not before and after photos but the undipped ones are very similar to the ones I dipped.
2 Eucalyptus dyed and then dipped in iron water

3 Eucalyptus dyed

4 Eucalyptus dyed and dipped in iron water
 The dark ones were soaked in the iron water for about an hour and then washed immediately. The proportions for the iron water are completely random, I did measure anything. These are all on silk noil and were dipped when I got back.
5 Cotinus and maple leaf dyed then dipped in iron water
Images five to nine are all on wool and dyed with leaves from the garden, again the undipped piece is to give colour comparisons. I wish I could get more true to life colours on these but I can't. piece 5 was dipped for one hour the others slightly less all were washed immediately afterwards. They had all been previously bundled and left to dry before being soaked in the iron water.
6 Maple leaf

7 Cotinus and dipped in iron water

8 Cotinus and maple and iron water

9 Cotinus, maple and iron water

I am very pleased with the results it good to get something other than brown. I will probably dip all the silk pieces and make them into a cushion as the colours go well with my with my sitting room furniture.


  1. This looks interesting! I'll try it one day:)
    ciao, Helga

  2. They're fantastic results Debbie!

  3. the iron water makes such a difference!

    1. Yes it really brings out the design if the original has insipid colours.

  4. Lovely results. Iron water is what exactly?

    1. Thanks Saskia, well my version is rusty metal in a jar with vinegar and water left for about a week before using. It was a bit haphazard no measuring, I think India Flint may have a recipe in one of her books or there are probably some online.

  5. Just found this post. I seem to have been away from your blog (and everyone else's) for far too long - too much galavanting! It's good to be back.
    I love the eucalyptus dyed and iron water dipped fabric. How lovely to have such a memento of a warm holiday in this miserable grey weather. It reminds me of a photo I took of a palm tree trunk on my recent holiday in Northern Australia. Maybe you've inspired me to try dying again!
    Happy holidays

    1. Thanks, I always try and do a bit of dyeing when on holiday abroad but don't have much success, I obviously need to go for longer.