I wrote a post on safflower dyeing before but only had a few photos to share. I promised more pictures the next time around, so here it is-- the process, step-by-step:
(Since the description is the same as before, so too, is the writing in some sections. More detail has been added overall for clarity. Also, the method I use is a combination from different sources.)
Safflower offers two different dyes: yellow and pink. If desired, both colors can be extracted from a single batch of petals, and that's what I usually like to do. First, I soak the petals in cool water to extract the yellow dye.
After about a three-hour soak, I strain the dye solution. If it looks like there is more color left in the petals, then I repeat the soak in a slightly weaker alkaline solution (8% petal weight of potassium carbonate) to drain the remaining color. When the rest of the color is out, I strain the solution. The petals, after the pink dye has been extracted, look like this:
::Two things to keep in mind before dyeing:: While the yellow dye can tolerate heat, the pink cannot. Since this is the case, the pink cannot be applied to wool, which requires a hot dyeing method. Also, the yellow dye requires a mordant, while the pink does not.
To dye with the pink, simply place the prepared dye material in the solution and move it around regularly to ensure even dyeing. I used 100% silk yarn. The dyeing process is relatively quick-- after about thirty minutes, the yarn was a striking bright pink:
The yarns, once rinsed and dry, are more a softer pink (though still quite bright) and golden yellow.
Wild Color: The Complete Guide to Making and Using Natural Dyes by Jenny Dean (ISBN: 0823057275)
草木染 (Colours from Plant Dyes) by Kazuki Yamazaki ISBN:4635580245
草木染めをしてみませんか工房で、キッチンで ISBN: 4473020800