Bronzed aussies

At that  shibori natural dyeing workshop, we also threw some squares of silk into a eucalyptus crenulata (silver gum) dye bath. This particular eucalypt is noteworthy for the browns it gives – its seems that most eucalypts gives shades of yellow and green. I really didn’t expect to see such beautiful bronzes.*

EucalyptusShades

The different mordants give different tones. From left to right: alum, ferrous sulphate (iron), and a mix of ferrous sulphate with alum. Since the mordants are completely absorbed by the fibre the remains of the dye bath can simply be poured over the garden. Now there’s a way to get around Stage 3a water restrictions.

I’m beginning to think about dyeing lengths of muslin to use as furoshiki (wrapping cloths) for Christmas presents. Use eucalyptus leaves, some tie-dyeing with the kids and voila, no crappy wrapping paper to deal with.

*Edited to add: we probably ought not to have been supplied with wild-gathered silver gum leaves. After a little investigating, this site tells me they’re listed as endangered.

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