Eco printed socks: Sweat as mordant?

One pair of Husband's 100% wool cross-country ski socks, forty years olds…yes, forty. (I am not the only one with a Stash…)

One day in the winter with only left-over dried eucalyptus to print with:

Wool socks bundled over debarked wood and simmered in left-over dye bath (dried coreopsis, tagetes and euc leaves) for a couple of hours:

The results with Eucalyptus globulus: One side of the bundle:

Other side:

Note the heel area and the colour obtained there:

Red on the upper sock where it came in contact with the heel in the rolled bundle:



So now, will Husband wear these? The answer is YES, he will. They look like the skin of some exotic animal!

But will I let him? If NO, only because I have other ideas than feet-covers for the fate these lovelies

10 thoughts on “Eco printed socks: Sweat as mordant?

    1. Hi Terrie

      This is Euc glob and I have only ever obtained browns, tans, oranges and yellows and yellow-greens on whatever substrate I have tried. The brick red at the heel of the sock and where the heel touched other parts of the sock – that is a first. As I said – is sweat the mordant or dye assissant? Plenty of perspiration in this!

  1. I’ve been eco dyeing bamboo and cotton socks from Dharma with euca, hibiscus, and onion. Soy mordant, OK results if, like your husband one likes exotic animal prints. I love yours, though. The wool prints so much better, and the colors are better. Hard to find wool blanks though. Great results.

    1. Hi Maggie
      Thanks for sharing that. I am supposing that age of the wool and its hisory of wear and wash will have a lot to do with the results. Although i have managed orange on silk organza with euca glob, this brick red is a first for me. Its the wool, as you say. Knitting wool socks…?????

  2. “Alien hides” as a friend calls them!! I’ve learned that when you recycle old cloth, you can get some unexpected and sometimes OMG sections–certain, ahem, “biologicals” on old sheets for example….
    i’ve gotten corals, peachs and orange on silk with euc, but the only red or burgundy ever was spanish onion skin on silk

  3. Oh my! Eclectic Meanderings just sent me this link and am I ever glad she did. I’ve been wondering about the next step for my cotton blouse dyed with eucalyptus with very orange results, like Arlee. I’m after something altogether different though and I love your results here.

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