Sustainable Systems: Natural Dye Lab

As a class, we tested the natural dyes of a different fabric (wool and muslin). We decided to have 30-second intervals and how clean the wool and muslin will be. As part of our required experiment, we also added the tartaric acid into our natural dye. As a group, we used the purple cabbaged I boiled from home and used it to mix it with the tartaric acid. Our professor mentioned that the tartaric acid has the ability to shrivel up and absorb all the water. Hence, the photos below show the results between with and without tartaric acid. Additionally, we added the other acids that were available to us, which made our natural dye mixture change color from purple to pink.

Process

 

Final Results

As a result, we can conclude that the size of the wool gradually became smaller due to the tartaric acid. Moreover, the wool washed with soap had the darkest purple pigment and the unwashed wool had the lightest purple pigment and the wool washed with water was in between the dark and the light pigment. This reveals that the wool did not absorb the most pigment from the natural dye due to the oil contained in the wool. Hence, the cleansed wool had no residue of the oil, which allowed the wool to absorb the natural dye as much as it could in a minute. Furthermore, the muslin also had shriveled up with the tartaric acid. Both muslin and wool had pink pigments when all of the acids were mixed into the natural dye. Thus, the natural dye experiment helped to see the effects of the tartaric acid as well as the pigments of purple depending on the cleansing of the wool.

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