The Dyes & The Yarn
What are Natural Dyes ?
Natural dyes produce some of the most beautiful and vibrant hues.. Extracting and applying those can be complicated and time consuming and if applied correctly will be colour fast and last as long as any synthetically hand dyed product.
All my yarns are pre prepared with a mordant which allows for improved binding of the natural color pigments to the fiber. Alum is a non toxic mordant, and not only promotes a stronger colour but also guarantees wash and light fastness of my hand dyed fabric and yarn.
Not all plant matter is possible to dye with. Some are not light or wash fast no matter how many mordants you use. Tumeric for one will fade quickly in direct sunlight. I only use plants and natural dyes that have proven strong light and wash fastness such as Walnut, Cochineal, Cutch, Goldenrod, Madder to name a few. These and combinations of form a strong bond with the yarn and on the assumption that you care for your yarn as recommended, will maintain its colours as well as any commercially dyed item.
I like to use locally grown plant matter but its not always possible so I try to source my dyes from eco friendly and sustainable producers.
Reproducing the same colours is always difficult even with a recipe. Colours can change seasonally and regionally so always buy as much as you need for your project in one batch.
Solid colours can also be slightly inconsistent. Due to the nature of the dyes you may find some solid colours can have slight shade variations in them so its always wise to alternate skeins when knitting with solid colours.
Australian & New Zealand yarn
Australia has some of the worlds highest quality wool. Sadly we only have a few mills that can spin the yarn and even fewer facilities to clean and scour the wool in preparation for spinning, so its usually sent offshore.
The yarns you find here are either Australian or New Zealand wool with the exception of the Donegal Nepp. All are milled in either New Zealand or Italy.
As the business grows you will find a more and more yarns “All Australian”. Occasionally I will try something new if its not possible to find it here in Australia.
Otherwise, its all True Blue Aussie.