Wednesday, July 22, 2015


On Monday we mixed up an indigo pot.  Originally obtained from plants, indigo is one of the oldest known dyes and is a vat dye.  It is mixed up in a large container and can last quite a while with proper tending.  We purchase"pre-reduced" indigo from PRO Chemical and Dye, meaning it is a synthetic product that simply requires mixing the indigo, some thiox and soda ash in water, then allowing it to sit a few hours for the "bloom" to develop.  The bloom is skimmed off before using the vat, and replaced when finished and tightly covered for use another day.  (ProChem has great instructions for the process on their website.)
 Here Elizabeth skims off the bloom.
Pieces being dyed are submerged in the vat for 2-3 minutes.  The fun thing about indigo is that the pieces are actually green when removed from the dye.
Upon exposure to the air, they begin to oxidize producing the distinctive blue color.
Above you can see the green as it is removed from the vat and the oxidation change to blue as it is exposed to air.  Below are some of the pieces that went into the vat. Results will be revealed tomorrow!

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