Welcome to the Quilting Board!

Already a member? Login above
loginabove
OR
To post questions, help other quilters and reduce advertising (like the one on your left), join our quilting community. It's free!

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 39

Thread: interesting tidbit

  1. #1
    Senior Member minnow895's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    mapleton,iowa
    Posts
    308
    i asked my aunt about natural dyes and what my great grant maothers and my grandmothers did for dyes for fabric .
    greatgrand ma used flour sacks to make quilts and clothing.since that was still the time of priaer life stores were far away and they only went about ever 6 months. they used berries, leaves,coffee grounds and tea leaves to make there dyies.
    to make a natural blue dye crush blue berries and boil in water till the color of the water changes.strain the water than add your cloth this is all done over a pot of boiling water. when you get the color you want rinse the cloth than put in the pot and boil in vinigar water tio set the dye the original water and crushed berries were put in the garden to fertilize it or made into jams and jellies for the winter.
    most everthing was used at least twice. most flour saks were first made into clothing and then made into a quilt, some flour sacks were used to dry dishes and for bath towels.
    when talking to the older people in the family i can see how wastfull of a society we have become.
    in the 1800's nothing was wasted everthing was used untill i just could not be used any more. oh the old quilts were used as batting for the new quilts so the flour sack lived on and on

  2. #2
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    SW Iowa
    Posts
    32,956
    They had recycling down to an art.

  3. #3
    Super Member AnnaK's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    San Francisco Bay area
    Posts
    1,446
    Blog Entries
    1
    I remember Mama using old quilts as 'batting' for newer ones. And I loved a skirt I had in kindergarten made with flour sacks. My parents still have only one credit card that they use as a an i.d. If they don't have the cash they don't buy the stuff. You're right, we can learn so much from the older generations.

  4. #4
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    The middle of an IL cornfield
    Posts
    7,024
    Blog Entries
    1
    When I was in my "pioneer phase" as a child, my mom and I cut up and old white sheet and dyed it with natural dies. Poke berries, walnut hulls, blueberries, etc. We then used the fabric to make Barbie clothes. I thought I was so cool!

  5. #5
    Senior Member Born2Sew's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    North Central Texas
    Posts
    656
    I love stories like this. I have some quilts that I rescued from an old closet at my grandparents house. I discovered that some of them had another quilt top underneath. I have no idea who made any of them. Now it makes me wonder just how old they are.

  6. #6
    Super Member SherriB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Quilting somewhere......
    Posts
    2,850
    Blog Entries
    40
    I would love to make a quilt using only natural dyes. I wonder if using a good quality white muslin would work. I think it is something to put on my "Someday I will make this" list.

    Blueberries for blue
    Yellow onion skins for yellow
    Red onion skins for red........

  7. #7
    Power Poster CarrieAnne's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Whitewater, WI
    Posts
    26,044
    I did that once with my kids when they were small...we used wild grapes. It made the most beautiful pink, (not the purple, that I thought)! Also onion skins for a light yellowish color. Was fun, but MESSY, MESSY,MESSY!

  8. #8
    Power Poster CarrieAnne's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Whitewater, WI
    Posts
    26,044
    I did that once with my kids when they were small...we used wild grapes. It made the most beautiful pink, (not the purple, that I thought)! Also onion skins for a light yellowish color. Was fun, but MESSY, MESSY,MESSY!

  9. #9
    Senior Member minnow895's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    mapleton,iowa
    Posts
    308
    Quote Originally Posted by SherriB
    I would love to make a quilt using only natural dyes. I wonder if using a good quality white muslin would work. I think it is something to put on my "Someday I will make this" list.

    Blueberries for blue
    Yellow onion skins for yellow
    Red onion skins for red........
    muslin will work but i have found that cotten takes these dyies a little better and dose not shrink as bad as some of the other materials.
    consider back when all fabric was cotten they did not have all the blends like the muslin fabrick or nylon rayon.
    another tidbit since bathing was not done regulary and warshing machines were not found wemon had a small round metal box they carries with them in the box was a cotten swab soacked with vinigar which they would dab themselves with to take care of body oder that was the first deoderant latter it was mixed with backing soada it was a great oder absorbant

  10. #10
    Super Member no1jan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
    2,094
    This is a little off topic, but my previous next door neighbor, now in assisted living, was like that. Both her and her husband who's gone now, used to recycle everything.

    We kind of thought it was funny when we put something in the garbage then saw them using it. We put out an old metal trash can because it split, and the next day they had a bird bath. Even down to doing dishes. She would use a dishpan then throw the dirty water on her plants as the detergent would keep the pests away.

    Too bad we didn't pay attention more! :) :) :)

    When she went into the assisted care, her daughter gave me silver butter dishes, platters, etc. They were still in the original package with the cards from their wedding over 50 years prior. They kept the good stuff for later.

  11. #11
    Super Member MaryAnna's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    1,925
    No wonder everyone was healthier back then! I think we all need to look back to see the future! Yes, we are a wasteful society, but hopefully things are turning around.
    Kind Regards,
    MaryAnna

  12. #12
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    5,837
    Blog Entries
    1
    when tye dying was a big thing in the 70's we used red kool-aid and mustard..grapes and whatever else we could find!

    my grandmother also used to toss the dish water water out in the veggie garden.
    she had old pieces of kitchen tools in the garden with plants in them..old tea pots/metal colandar etc..

  13. #13
    Pam
    Pam is offline
    Super Member Pam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Southern Illinois
    Posts
    3,713
    Quote Originally Posted by SherriB
    I would love to make a quilt using only natural dyes. I wonder if using a good quality white muslin would work. I think it is something to put on my "Someday I will make this" list.

    Blueberries for blue
    Yellow onion skins for yellow
    Red onion skins for red........
    Think how special this would be if you laid it out in the yard, crushed each item on the fabric itself, and squashed and squished it all together. Designer fabric, I am thinking.

  14. #14
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Front row
    Posts
    14,661
    Blog Entries
    2
    I've tried natural dyes. A big mess and it didn't take me long to realize it wasn't fun. I guess if I lived where I couldn't get pretty colored fabrics I'd do it. But where on earth would that be?

  15. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Spanish Fort, AL
    Posts
    501
    One year my DD had to do a science project and she did natural dyes We just went out in the field and garden and started collecting things and then went through the refrigerator and cabinets. Onions skins make a great yellow. By the way, she got a second-place medal in the science fair.

  16. #16
    Super Member
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Merced, CA
    Posts
    4,230
    Blog Entries
    1
    When she went into the assisted care, her daughter gave me silver butter dishes, platters, etc. They were still in the original package with the cards from their wedding over 50 years prior. They kept the good stuff for later.
    ------------------------------------------
    Over 40 years ago when I married my half Portuguese husband, my dear, old
    world MIL told me to always use my "good stuff" for my family and not wait
    till "later" or "for company". What did I think I was saving it for, his next wife?

    After thinking that over, I did use all the good stuff, and very little was broken,
    usually by me and not the kids!! And the kids grew up liking nice things and
    knew how to take care of them!!

  17. #17

    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    870
    I have always thought that I was born about 100 years too late. I think I would have been very content to live in such austere and simple times. Our lives have become so complicated in order to be able to afford timesavers like microwave ovens and things to entertain us like televisions. Back then, people worked and enjoyed an activity simply for the doing of it--as the Amish still do. Families spent more time together because everyone wasn't going off someplace else to earn a living. I'm not complaining because I have a good life. I've just often thought that I would have been happier in a less complicated world.

  18. #18

    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    BC Canada
    Posts
    95
    I remember dying Easter eggs with onion skins.

  19. #19
    Banned
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Keene, New Hampshire
    Posts
    4,270
    Quote Originally Posted by AnnaK
    I remember Mama using old quilts as 'batting' for newer ones. And I loved a skirt I had in kindergarten made with flour sacks. My parents still have only one credit card that they use as a an i.d. If they don't have the cash they don't buy the stuff. You're right, we can learn so much from the older generations.
    I've used a couple of old quilts as batt; they had sentimental value and were no longer useable.

  20. #20
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    MS
    Posts
    3,486
    Blog Entries
    2
    Quote Originally Posted by no1jan
    This is a little off topic, but my previous next door neighbor, now in assisted living, was like that. Both her and her husband who's gone now, used to recycle everything.

    We kind of thought it was funny when we put something in the garbage then saw them using it. We put out an old metal trash can because it split, and the next day they had a bird bath. Even down to doing dishes. She would use a dishpan then throw the dirty water on her plants as the detergent would keep the pests away.

    Too bad we didn't pay attention more! :) :) :)

    When she went into the assisted care, her daughter gave me silver butter dishes, platters, etc. They were still in the original package with the cards from their wedding over 50 years prior. They kept the good stuff for later.
    I like this story.

  21. #21
    Senior Member cpfrog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    454
    Blog Entries
    1
    Any muslin would work if it's 100% cotton or just use a good solid cotton fabric, preferably white. Do not use the blends. If you use light colors like tan or beige or light yellow, that will affect the dye results.

    Without going up into my attic and finding my ol' college class notes, I think if anyone wanted to use natural dyes, you'd need a book from the library for reference.

    You just can't take berries and dye cotton. It might stain for awhile, but not "dye". There is a difference. Then there are mordants that can be used to affect the way the material accepts the dye-stuff and makes it more permanent. But, while vegetable dying is natural and "green", it is not without future problems like fading in sunlight, etc.

    It was a wonderful and fun course I took at Kent State in the late 1970's, called Weaving I (101) but called for much organization and (some) expensive dyes and large kettles for equipment, etc.... Take a class or at least find a good book on it. Good luck.

  22. #22
    Super Member SandyMac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Ludington MI
    Posts
    1,419
    Blog Entries
    12
    I wonder what these women would think of our shop hops and fabric staches :D

  23. #23

    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    north Alabama
    Posts
    28
    My Grandmother used EVERYTHING until it was gone. I,to the dismay of my children, tend to do the same. I am 52 years old, and while we weren't poor in the true sense of the word, lived frugally ..... ie growing our own food, canning and freezing, wearing homemade clothes. To this day, I recycle everything, old furniture can be refinished, clothes can be remade, garden veggies are canned and frozen.I never considered it living "green', it's just the way I chose to live. My children, on the otherhand, seem wasteful to me.

  24. #24
    Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Posts
    73
    Did the onion skin thing for a project for my DGD a while back. the first batch was so nasty we threw it out. The 2nd batch, we put the onion skins in clean panty hose; still a little messy and we got a pretty color. We were afraid to boil too long and melt the panty hose. We needn't have worried; they didn't seem to be affected by the temperature of the water.

  25. #25
    Super Member dotcomdtcm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    New York City UWS
    Posts
    4,426
    As an art teacher, I became the Queen of Tie Dye! I even had a washing machine in my art classroom! Girl of the '70's. I had the kids experiment w natural dyes and used Procion for their tee shirts. Now that I am retired I have been dying old cotton sheets for backing. I make wall pieces and machine quilt, so this works.

    A piece of my history!
    Name:  Attachment-56297.jpe
Views: 10
Size:  80.8 KB

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.