‘buttercup’ dye

As spring arrives, so do the wild flowers. Because this winter was not a very wet winter unfortunately we do, as of now, not have many wild flowers. There are two bushes that are yielding yellow flowers and off one of them I gathered a few to experiment dye with.

The official name is from the family Fabaceae, Senna Comingii and I think they are called locally la Caparra, the other one that yields yellow flowers is locally called Quebracho and that bush has many spines.

But these yellow ones are so bright!! Look at the picture, how they jump out of their surroundings. The sun captured in tiny little flowers.

They smell extremely sweet and to me look like buttercups although the leaves absolutely not, just the flowers.

I collected enough flowers to fill a jar and filled it with fresh water. This jar I’ve put in a sunny spot so that the sun rays can extract the dye from the petals and hopefully will leave a nice yellow dye.

The first days were cloudy days so I left it in the jar a few days more when the sun was blasting away.

The sun made the jar go vacuum and a bit of power was needed to open it. The top flowers were already turning bad and an awful smell came out of the jar. 

I quickly discarded the flowers by draining the liquid through a strainer, so the flowers would leave behind.

And added some sample materials to the dye. The jar went back into the sun for several days.

After 4 or 5 days, I forgot exactly how long, I took the samples out and this is the result.

Soft yellow on 100% cotton yarn, soft fabric and heavy fabric, namely canvas. All these were pre treated with bean mordant (find how-to link in menu above).

And the most amazing colour green after a short dip in iron water: absolutely my favourite!!

Now only Time will tell if this will stay.

Meanwhile I encourage you to try out little flower dyes too and if you happen to have the buttercups don’t forget to tell me if those yield a stronger yellow.

I sure had lots of fun experimenting and will continue to do so.

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