Behind the scenes over the last few months, I’ve been attending talks on dyeing fibres and reading up on the subject here and there. The upshot of this is lots of information swirling round in my brain. But one piece has landed: equipment used for dyeing must only be used for dyeing.
With this in mind, I put an advert on Freegle asking if anyone had an aluminium pan they wanted to part with. And it turns out that two people did, or rather one had aluminium, the other worn Teflon-coated, base unknown. I plumped for the aluminium, knowing this metal is least likely to interfere with the dyes.
Thus, I set out to collect the pan, not knowing I was in for more than one delight. I already knew that the woman I was collecting from might have something in common with me, since her husband had formerly used the pan to heat horns for medieval re-enactors and such. I also found out that they espoused the same overall ethos of living as me, once we got talking by their back door.
Apart from learning that one of their daughters is a proficient spinner and that the couple are going to have green burials, they wanted to know from me about the dyeing process. This led to my explaining as much as I could about solar dyeing. Whereupon the man said he thought he had just the container somewhere in his garage and out came a very large sweet jar.
His wife said with some indignation, ‘I thought you’d put that in the bin’ to which he insisted that there had been another one which went in the bin. In any case the long-suffering lady has now perhaps got the opportunity to empty more of the house into the garage. At least two things.