|Chinese Woad Isatis indigotica|
I decided to dye with them all:
starting with Chinese Woad ( Isatis indigotica) .This was last picked in November so all this growth has been since then so I was not sure how much blue there would be in the leaves .
|ripped leaves covered with boiling water|
I picked all the leaves, weighing 220 g and ripped them all roughly , poured over 2 kettlesful of boiling water and left to steep. You can see the colour after about 20 minutes, this is the precursor to Indigotin.
Then I added 1 tablespoon of washing soda ( sodium carbonate)You can see that the water is now a murky green
|Ready to beat|
|starting to beat|
|after beating for a few minutes|
|After beating. Now there is blue skim of indigotin on the surface. Hopeful!|
In the picture below you can see the fully reduced vat with some pale blue undissolved indigo on the surface showing that there is some blue but perhaps not a lot.
|warmed vat with fibres added|
|fires goingblue in the air|
|weld dyed merino and silk|
The rest of the dyes are cooking as I write.