I've started working on my quilt for Dorry's New from Old June Bride challenge (I showed my starting point here). Last weekend, I did a little silk dying. I'd learned this very easy technique in a class back in 2009. For this quilt, I wanted to get a silk that more or less matched a hand-dyed cotton my friend Diane sent me a few years back. (Diane has a brand new Etsy shop where she is selling some knitting and weaving yarns, but she's also just thrown some newly created colorful socks out there!)
Here's the 1/2 yard silk piece I tie-dyed for my challenge quilt - I was happy that the blue in my silk dyes came out very similar to the blue Diane created in cotton with a completely different type of dye.
When I had the depth of color I wanted for this project, I threw another 1/2 yard piece of a different textured silk in my plastic bag, so as not to waste any of the dye. The dye bath was still blue after that, so I put in a third, very smooth silk to soak up the color, leaving the water nearly clear, and resulting in three graded blue silks in different textures for some future project.
Because this is a challenge I'm trying some new techniques for my small-scaled quilt. One of these is a spray-on product from Australia called Perfect Sew. Its purpose is to give the slippery silk more stability for piecing with the cottons we quilters love to work with. I'll let you know how I like it after it dries and I start piecing.