Bengala Dyeing

iron oxide

Bengala dyes are natural and environmentally safe.  The name comes from the Bengal region in India-Bangladesh where the process originated.  The dyes are used with water only, although it is recommended that one uses their ammonium based pre-fixer to make the colours more vibrant on your fabric. The dye is kneaded into the fabric, and the water will gradually become clear as the fabric takes up more of the dye.  Once you have the colour you want, if there is any dye still left in the water, it will last for up to five days in the refrigerator so you can use it again.  The dye is made from iron oxide so any unused dye can be disposed of by tipping it onto the soil.  The colour will be fast once it has dried and it has gentle UV protection.  Historically, iron oxide is a very old pigment which was used by many ancient cultures, and the Japanese used iron oxide to paint their wooden structures to give UV protection and to deter termites.  There is much iron oxide in many Australian soils which gives it the red colour.  This sounds like a fun thing to play with.  I have not found it for sale anywhere in Australia yet unfortunately, but here’s hoping.

Kathryn’s Saori

DSCF1877Kathryn had a day at Lyn’s on the Saori Loom. She wanted to make a beautiful present for her sister’s 40th birthday. How happy she was when it was cut off the loom. After choosing all the colours she wanted, she was off and shuttling. I know she loved her day and her special present to her sister living in Mareeba near Cairns. Kathryn used different cottons for the lightweight design, adding splashes of wool to set it all off. Home she went to tie off the fringes to finish it off, and then wash, press and post. Just as well she loves her sister, as otherwise it would be her own. She fell in love with the Saori. Beautiful work Kathryn. By Lyn.

Happy New Year

The Cottage

The Cottage

Hello everyone.  I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and New Year break.  Now let’s get back into crafting.  I hope to see everybody at the Cottage very soon with plenty of holiday stories to tell, and perhaps some items to show.