Oak Galls Dye

oak galls

oak galls

Here are samples of different fibers (cotton and silk with a shred of wool yarn) dyed with the oak galls from previous post. I only dyed very small amounts so the few galls came to some 80 or 90% dry weight of the fiber.

It gave light 'blond' colours that seem nice and complex if you look at them closely. The darkest piece in the top picture is silk organza which I've never worked with before and am wondering if it always takes up dye so well. The grey pieces were dipped in iron.

oak galls + walnut leaves

Thanks to their tannin content, oak galls can be used not only as a dye but work as a mordant too. I overdyed some of the fabrics with walnut leaves which was not the best thought out experiment not least because I didn't put in any unmordanted fabric to compare.

Anyway... it resulted in lovely milky coffee shades. The dark grey pieces were again modified with iron afterwards.


Lisa at lil fish studios said...

That is amazing. I had no idea you could use them in this way. I pick them up from time to time to add to my windowsill collection...now I'll be watching for them with dyeing in mind.

Brittany | the Home Ground said...

These colors and shades are absolutely gorgeous. You have me really excited for next year when I can do some more natural dyeing experiments! I love your work, you have such a great sensibility and eye.

kirsten said...

this is so beautiful.
and stunning shades.

Eva said...

Lisa - they are pretty, I kept some for a windowsil collection too :)

Brittany - thank you! I hope you blog about your dyeing, it's always great to see what unexpected colours emerge...

Kirsten - thank you for stopping by!