May Your Life Be Like A Basket...Useful...Bountiful...Beautiful...

Basketmaster's Weavings is about my passions, much of which revolves around basket weaving. I weave with reed and I love teaching others to weave. Many of the patterns and styles that I show in the blog are geared to the beginning weaver, or even the brand new weaver. If you have been thinking about wanting to learn to weave, then this blog is for you. Throughout the blog and videos I take you step by step through each and every process of weaving. I want you to be successful in weaving the very first time you try. For the intermediate and advanced weaver, my wish is that you take ideas that I show, mix them up a bit, and incorporate them into your own beautiful creations.

Happy Weaving and Baskets of Blessings to all my visitors,


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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Technique/Tip Tuesday--Dying Reed

Today I would like to post my directions on how I dye my reed. There are several dyes on the market, but I use good old Rit dye and this is my recipe.

I use a large enamel pot and work outside on an outdoor propane burner. I fill the pot about 1/2 full of water which in my case is about 2 1/2 gallons of water. I get the water up to a boil and add one box of powdered Rit die, 1 cup table salt and 1 cup white vinegar. I use powdered Rit only because it cost less than the liquid, but liquid is fine. I use the salt and vinegar to help get the color to really set well. Yes, it will fade if placed in direct sunlight, most dyes will but the salt and vinegar just seem to help keep it from having any natural fading. Using my recipe gives me really rich colors. Once the water is boiling, I turn off the heat and add my reed. I will add 2 1/2 pounds of reed to this mixture. Any more than that, it just doesn't get the intensity of color that I like. Usually I will dye 1 pound of 3/8" flat and 1 pound of 1/4" flat. Then I use 1/2 pound of another size of my choice. This just seems to be what works for me. I open up my pounds of reed and submerge them into the pot of dye doing one pound at a time. I have a big set of barbecue tongs to help push the reed down into the water. Sometimes it wants to float and most times I have to turn it to be sure it gets complete coverage. I have plenty of newspaper on the ground to catch drips and to also lay the reed on to dry once it has achieved it's color. Getting the color usually only takes a few minutes, but I have been known to let the reed soak for up to an hour. Dying reed is a simple process and very fun to watch the colors appear. I don't wear gloves, but I do wear old clothes. Please don't dye it in your kitchen. Accidents can happen too easy and oh what a mess! Also, be sure to visit for color charts, techniques and ideas.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a good way to dye reeds. thanks Nancy

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