elderberry on muslin

well, i didn't have quite the success that grace did with just leaving elderberry bundles out in pots for a week, the results then were really light. but the time in the pots pre-mordanted them for hot-bundling on the stove. yesterday i let the fabric and leaf roll-ups steam on a rack in a pot of boiling water for about an hour.

all of these were sitting in the copper pot all week, and then hot bundled on the stove:

these were sitting in the cast iron pot, and then hot bundled on the stove.
the striations are from the twine. i think this one's my fave.

this one had some pokeberry leaves in it too.

this one had no pre-mordant, but a soak in an elderberry bath that was sitting in the crock pot after i dyed some yarn (which made the background much pink-er), and then hot-bundled with elderberry leaves and some pokeberry leaves.

what i'm imagining now is using these to create blocks to surround the saddle blanket, as if elderberry's resting in a bed of leaves. i've got some muslin soaking in ash water, and i'll see how the same leaves print a second time. i'll also try some dahlia and purple basil leaves from the garden.


  1. always love those striations from the twine. you got some nice markings from the elderberry.

  2. I love these. The bundled striations are my favorite, as well as the gentle, mottled pink of the last panel.

    Your experiments with textiles and fiber are always intriguing to me.

  3. When I attended a workshop with India 2 years ago she mentioned presoaking non protein fibres ie cotton, linen etc in diluted milk over night to help the article take up more dye colour. Wool and silk takes the natural plant dyes the best. I lay the leaves on the fabric first then roll them round a stick or stone before I bind them tightly. (I think she might have talked about it in her eco colour book) Using wool or silk fabric ensures the details of the leaves will show through and they dont need any prior treatment.