Tuesday, August 05, 2008

The Charm is Firm and Good

First Witch
Round about the cauldron go;
In the poison'd entrails throw.
Toad, that under cold stone
Days and nights has thirty-one
Swelter'd venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i' the charmed pot.

ALL
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

...

Second Witch
Cool it with a baboon's blood,
Then the charm is firm and good.

Goldenrod is in bloom now and it has been calling out to me each morning when I look out the window to our backyard that is filled with weeds, I mean, wildflowers. Yesterday, I got my dye pot and my clippers and filled the pot with the goldenrod flowers. Then I boiled them up for an hour. Note to self: make sure Dan is never, ever around for this as the smell from boiling goldenrod brings to mind the three witches from Macbeth. Toil and trouble indeed! It could kill even if one wasn't an allergy sufferer.

I mordanted two pounds of wool and four ounces of alpaca in tin, being all out of alum, and then dyed most of the wool in the straight goldenrod dye. Fabulous bright yellow!



I have lots of yellow now. In fact so much yellow that a little over-dyeing might be in order.

I put the remaining wool and the alpaca in the dye pot for a second round, adding two cups of some cochineal dye I had left over from my last dye session. A lovely, soft orange.



The alpaca takes dye a little slower than wool so it came out very light. I may over-dye most of that as well. Do I dare to get that indigo pot fermenting? The witchcraft continues...

1 comment:

Patti Blaine said...

Pssst. I've got some woad. Growing from two year old purloined seeds. From some medieval garden in upstate Manhattan... and I'll not divulge any more details here. ;)