After yesterday’s post about my ecoprinted and rust dyed scarf, I had a couple of queries/comments about washing and colour fastness.
I ironed the scarf when it was dry to help set the colour, and noticed that the areas that showed as bright pink in the photos yesterday were much less bright. I was intending to leave the scarf for a couple of days before washing it, but then I read on this blog by Kimberley Packwood Baxter that I needed to neutralise the rust by soaking the scarf in water with bicarbonate of soda.
So I did that this morning – the soaking removed the crusty bits of rust that were attached to the scarf, but I didn’t lose much colour. Then I rinsed it, washed it with a bit of shampoo and rinsed again – still very little colour loss.
Interestingly, now that it’s dry and ironed again, I can see the bits that were previously pink have changed to an olive green – would be interesting to find out why this is. Is it due to oxidation, or to the change in pH?
Also, the outlines of some of the onion skins can be seen very clearly.
I’m hugely excited by this technique – though it could be beginner’s luck (well, second-timer’s luck). I think the rusty pipe is acting as a mordant as well as providing the rust colour.
Already the next scarf is wrapped up and rusting gently on the windowsill – and I’ve acquired two more rusty bits of metal from building sites I was walking past. 🙂