I asked about this on the World Laurel List and got the following reply:
Beets (or as they say in Europe, "beet-root") was used for reds and pinks
but since the color was fugitive and washed out, I suspect it would have
been only for special occasions. Or for such things as a one-time banner or
such like. Danish dyers baked beets to keep the color in fiber longer, but
it still doesn't last very long. Beets should work pretty well on reeds, but
I'd be interested to know how long it lasts. The basket-weaver might want to
use brazilwood or madder instead. -- Flavia (Bjo Trimble
From: Kelly McDonald [mailto:azapolya1@...
Sent: Monday, November 17, 2003 9:04 AM
Subject: [SCAbasketry] An Introduction
Good morning! While I have been a member of this list for a few
months, this is my first posting. I'm fairly new to basket weaving
(I've been doing it for about 6 months now), and I love it! I am
from the Middle Kingdom, though all of my weaving has been through
guilds in my area, and not for SCA purposes, yet.
I am curious as to whether or not anyone has tried dying reed with
beets, and if anyone is aware of how far back beets date. I think I
remember reading something about them dating back to the 1500's but I
could be wrong.
Also what types of materials are you guys using for your SCA
weaving? Typical basket reed, or are you using willows, grasses, etc?
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