We had some time without Mini today, as she had a play day with Grammy...always a good time for Mini. Grammy is like a 3 year old, only better.
We decided to take this opportunity to get our hair cut. Husband and I have both been wanting to do this for a very long time, but it just never seems to work out. We headed over to Acorn, an organic salon in Dover. It was great to not smell chemicals the whole time we were there. The air was clean and fresh. Amazing, considering they do all the stuff that normally causes smells, like hair dyes and Manicures, but they use completely different products! The staff is friendly and our hair looks terrific. Oh, and I got a discount when I used my Green Alliance Card!
The other great thing about Acorn salon is it is near the fabulous Silver Moon Creperie, and Spinning Yarns! We enjoyed crepes before the cuts and then headed over to the yarn store after. I picked up a skein of Organic Wool from Rowan. I wanted to try dyeing it with the beet juice I've been keeping in the fridge for just such an experiment.
I've read online about dyeing with beets and it doesn't generally yield the desired deep red/pink color that most folks intend when they set out to dye with beets. Evidently a dye needs 2 properties, A good color base, and the ability to be colorfast. Beets only have the great color. Wool has the ability to hold color, so it works better with beets than cotton. Some people have been able to obtain pale pink, others get a pale rust color. I don't care what I get because the yarn is for leggings for the girls, so any color is fine. I decided this made it a low risk experiment.
I started by boiling water and Apple Cider Vinegar in a pot. Then soaking the yarn to prep it for absorbing the color.
After lightly squeezing the excess water from the yarn, I put it into a pan with hot beet juice and additional vinegar. I let the yarn simmer for 1 hour.
I then placed the yarn in a warm bath of salt water, and let set for 15 minutes.
Rinsed. The water ran clean right away, so I think this color should stick around.
It's hanging on the drying rack.
I'm so glad I forged ahead! I love it. It's not pink, it is more of a rosie rust, but a lovely color and one I would certainly have bought had I seen it in a store. I am amazed. I didn't have high hopes after everything I read online. Do a search and you'll see what I mean. I'm not sure how I got such a rich color. I hadn't heard anyone who was unsuccessful mention using a salt rinse, and that might have helped, since salt assists with colorfastness. Maybe the fact I used Apple Cider Vinegar instead of white vinegar. I don't know, but I know I'm happy and will definitely need to experiment in the future with natural yarn dyes!