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DSC_0025I’m still learning to use WordPress and have not quite figured out how to get text between my images…  but here is the process I used for this experiment…..The bark was shed naturally from my myrtle trees in the yard. I soaked them in water (rainwater actually) for about a week. This yielded something that resembled weak tea. I decided that maybe some gentle heat would coax out the color so I set the kettle on a very low heat for most of a day. The only pot I had to work with was an enamel one so that is what I used. By the end of the heating period the dye liquor looked a lovely mahogany brown. I did some quick swatch tests which you can see in the previous posts.This morning I strained the liquor and separated it into two jars. I put the spent bark in the compost bin where I hope it will make nice compost!  I put one quart of the liquor back in the enamel pot and one quart in a rusty old cast iron dutch oven and brought them to simmer.  Into each went a piece of an old shirt that I decided would be nice for this project.  I simmered each for one hour. The cast iron pot turned an inky black very quickly. I was a bit intimidated by it! After the hour was up, I let both pots cool.  After putting each through a good rinsing and air drying, I washed them in mild soapy water. There did not seem to be much dye in the water which was encouraging. The end result after the wash was pretty much as dark as the pieces when they air dried so I think the dye is going to stay put. As for light fastness that remains to be seen.

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