During my blogging rambles I came across a post about boiling fabrics in (red) onion skins as a way of dyeing them naturally and as I have been saving red onion skins for some time for just that purpose I decided to finally get the pan out and give it a go.
I've got an old aluminium saucepan that my father-in-law had finished with and put various pieces of folded and clamped fabrics into this and boiled it all up for about half an hour. The clamps consisted of pegs, bulldog clips and also some plastic triangles to hopefully achieve some additional marks. Everything was left in the water overnight (not with any heat under it!).
I was quite surprised by the colours I achieved and also by the intensity of the colours on some of the fabrics. Above is a cotton hanky that was folded in triangles and clamped with pegs.
Above is a very pale offering of an old nylon curtain. I'm excited to use this as an overlay.
What about this fabulous silk and silk dupion above! I couldn't believe how strong the colours are.
Above is a piece of gauze folded in triangles and held by a bulldog clip.
This piece of cottton was folded round 4 triangular pieces of plastic but the marks are not very strong.
Finally a small square of cotton held by a large bulldog clip and some beautiful vintage broderie anglaise. I also dyed some threads but sadly forgot to photograph them.
I had expected to get redder tones from the skins so all of these were quite a surprise. I am thinking about using them in the International Quilt Challenge Archi-texture piece. Watch this space! (I've saved the liquor from the onions to boil up again as it was pretty dark and may give some more colour yet).
And finally, all the while I was playing with the onions this little ditty was running through my head
A toon from my yoof!