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Making Lakes for Recycling of Dye Bath Leftovers

Making Lakes for Recycling of Dye Bath Leftovers

Every dyer, whether a craftsman or a hobbyist engaging in natural dyeing occasionally, inevitably faces the problem of recycling leftovers.

After an inspiring dyeing session, pots remain full of precious dyes that usually can't be thoroughly used, as natural dyes are not so simple. Often, after hesitation and feelings of guilt, it all ends with simply pouring out the vat's contents.

In his new course, Michel Garcia gives us clear instructions on how to solve this problem. The solution: turn the leftovers into pigments! This solution is brilliant in its simplicity. Pigments can be stored in the form of a paste for a long time, even without drying, especially if you add a drop of essential oil to the paste. The process of making pigments is captivating and no more complicated than cooking. On the other hand, it almost turns us into alchemists of bygone times. The resulting pigments can later be dissolved in an acidic medium and used for dyeing wool and silk and printing.

What will we need? Just a few simple items: your dye pot leftovers, a bit of aluminum sulfate, or even—bingo—leftover of aluminum sulfate or alum mordant liquid, and a pinch of baking soda. You'll also need a funnel and a fabric for filtration. And, of course, don't forget your most important tools: patience and curiosity—companions of every dyer.

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