Sunday, July 05, 2015

Summertime


Summertime,
An’ the livin' is easy
Fish are jumpin'
An’ the cotton is high...



summertime is harvest time

Ash leaves (Fraxinus excelsior) to brew "Frenette". 
Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium) as herbal medicine.
and Dyer's Chamomille (Anthemis tinctoria) to make a yellow dye


When fermented in sugar or honey water, Ash leaves produce an alcoholic drink called Frenette or cidre de frêne. Frenette is a traditional drink fallen into oblivion since the sixties. However, it is still made by a few grandmothers in the countryside. This drink, which taste a bit like apple cider was already brewed by our ancestors the Gauls. Each region had its own recipe. Slightly alcoholic (2 °) and slightly sweet, this drink is not fattening. It is drunk fresh as lemonade.

The Gauls were Celtic peoples inhabiting Gaul in the Iron Age and the Roman period. The Gaul region corresponds to what is now Belgium, France, Switzerland, Netherlands, Western Germany and Northern Italy.





Sparkling wines from natural fermentation

"Frenette" , wild strawberries and raspberries, peaches, elder flowers





I'm testing all kinds of vegetable mordants for the moment,
to ensure a better result with plant dyes as I don't want to use any metallic mordants !
Here I'm testing leafs of Rheum palmatum commonly called Turkish rhubarb
It is said that the fumes are hazardous so I'm a bit careful.

It surely smells like the rhubarb jam my grandmother use to make




and here's the result

Blue faced Leicester top, Blue faced Leicester sock yarn, silk/mohair, 
alpaca/ silk and some eco wool from the Andes, 
dyed and mordanted with Turkish Rhubarb

waiting for the Woad vat to be ready...
to be dyed 
GREEN !



In the meantime I'm harvesting next year's blues

Isatis tinctoria seeds
Woad 

...






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