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We do a lot of natural dyeing at Maiwa. Much of what we do involves testing natural dyes and natural dye extracts. We test to see how they behave; both alone and when combined with mordants and other dyes. These tests result in a myriad small samples. We find that they are quite informative either alone or in the larger schematic of what we are testing. So, for example, above we have gone from Dyer's Broom to Lac in increments of 5%. The top is only Dyer's Broom at 8% WOF. The bottom is only lac at 5% WOF. We did the tests on wool, rayon, silk, cotton (mercerized), and cotton (boiled).
If you are admiring the test samples, the beautiful colour and the exquisite way in which they are balled and labeled, you are probably admiring the work of Linda Spence. Linda is often found in the Maiwa dye studio with a row of pots simmering. She is very careful and thorough - good qualities when you are putting together an array of test samples.
|Linda pulls some colour from the pot.|