I have been experimenting with avocado pits and skins on sheep wool. I chopped up pits and skins and added them to soaked border leicester fleece and kept it on a low simmer for about 24 hours. It came out as a pinkish color with a touch of apricot.
Then, I did 2 pots of soaked merino fleece: to one pot I added pits only, to the other, skins only. I ended up with a dusty/earthy pink. Very dull, which is not surprising. Merino fiber has no shine at all.
Border leicester wool has a touch of shine, just enough to notice a little more richness in color when dyed. The trade-off in this example is that it is not as soft as merino. On the other hand it is more durable.
Many dyers using avocado simmer the pits/skins in water, strain, and add just the water to the dyebath. I did not do this because my stove was awaiting repair. I dye in large stainless steel electric pots (they are meant for water bath canning). It occurs to me now that I could have simmered the avocado stuff in the big pots first and then strain them out, but I didn’t. Either I was too impatient or too dense. Probably some of both.
Apropos of impatience, each experiment used only 4 or 5 avocados. Now I am collecting skins and pits and adding them to a freezer bag (from what I have read, freezing does not interfere with avocado dye production). When I get around 20 or so I will try again to see I more dyestuff will give a deeper color. I expect it will.
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