MaryJane's Farmgirl Sisterhood

Earning Farmgirl Sisterhood Merit Badges

Stitching & Crafting

15. Dyeing for Color

Beginner Level

  • Learn to dye safely. Write an article or presentation on dyeing safety to present on the Farmgirl Connection chatroom or to your Chapter or a craft group. Be sure to compare natural and historical dyes and their mordants as well as modern dyeing practices. Discuss safety and disposal considerations for each.
  • Do one project using safe products around the house or dyes you can easily dispose of. Try a tea- or coffee-staining project and use your fiber for a finished product like a quilt or pillow. Show off your project and ask yourself whether you’ve caught “the dye bug.”

Intermediate Level

  • Start a dye journal and swatch-card file. Dye both plant and protein fibers (for example, cotton, hemp, or rayon, and wool or silk). Save the recipes and a swatch in your journal. Share your recipes and results on the Farmgirl Chatroom.
  • Dye yarn, fabric, and roving. Spin and knit or crochet the roving or give to a local Sister who spins. Show off your finished hand-dyed pieces you’re on your way to color mastery.

Expert Level

  • Try a new dye technique: fabric painting, stamping, silk screen, batik, tie-dye, etc. Find out about basic color theory. Use dye baths to create your own fiber color wheels and palettes. Complete another expert-level project using a new dye technique. Consider a challenging technique such as Katazome.
  • If you haven’t already, learn two ways to dye multiple colors in the same piece. Consider yourself a dyeing diva!

January, 2011 Edition