I’ve never tried making natural dyes before, and having stumbled upon the instructions above, we decided it would be a fun thing for the boys to do.
For green we used: grass, clover leaves, nettles and spinach.
For pink/purple we used: half a red cabbage, some frozen berries that had been knocked over in the freezer and a couple of fruit teabags that nobody liked.
For orange we used: carrots, onion skins, teabags and turmeric.
While their concoctions simmered on the stove, the boys tied marbles into muslin cloths to make patterns. We simmered the cloths in the liquid once we had strained it and then left them to soak for a few hours.
My middle boy, who chose orange, was incredibly impressed. The depth of colour was brilliant. The green was definitely not green but yellow, and the purple was very washed out.
My middle boy, his happiness was almost good enough to cancel out the smell of turmeric bubbling away on the stove for an hour. The rest of the afternoon was spent lighting every single scented candle I own to get rid of the smell.
But on the plus side, we tried something new and the boys are mostly pleased with the results.