Foraging for an Autumn Rainbow

Has it been that long already?

To be honest, we have finally had our car back and have been using every spare moment we have to go out and see what we have been missing in the woodlands, on the hill tops and the shore.

My goodness autumn is coming quickly. We have seen so many varieties of mushrooms that it has become a bit of a hobby photographing them and trying to identify them. I would love to have the confidence to be able to forage a few to eat but I think a little course in edible mushrooms is a must first.

Foraging at this time of year is so much fun. Taking a little basket out and coming home with blackberries, windberries, chestnuts, wild raspberries (the list goes on) and within a few hours having all kinds of yummy treats.

But the magic of summer becoming autumn aside, I have finally had some success with natural dyeing!

The “Wild Colour” book by Jenny Dean did a spectacular vanishing act from my amazon account twice so I have yet to obtain or use it, but I bit the bullet and decided to just go for it.

Here is heather dyeing adventure


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Having picked for an hour we had a bucket of pre sorted heather flowers which took the plunge that evening

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and the resulting colour?

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Is this one on the bottom. It is actually a little greener than I could capture through the lens…

Above (bottom to top) is Rhubarb root on an alpaca and cotton blend, Rhubarb root on some handspun lambswool, Madder, Brazil Wood, Windberries (Bilberries), and Hollyhock flowers.

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Isn’t it lovely the way the colours all go together so well? Nature never seems to clash, does it?

I am delighted with the outcome, particularly the windberries which gave the most unexpected rich shade of chocolate brown, even if half of our pick once again ended up in the bubbling pot with some home grown raspberries and plums for more jam!

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The Jam however was the lovely windberry red and not the chocolate shades it gave the merino yarn!

What do you forage for, if at all, and what do you do with your findings?



About woodlandknitter

Who am I? A Mummy first a foremost to my two children, Toby and Emily. We took the decision to home educate the children after Toby had many problems within state education. Unable to send them to a Steiner school at present we base their education around the Waldorf ethos. This is working out wonderfully so far and we wish we had done it sooner. Secondly I am a fibre obsessive. Knitting, spinning, felting, dyeing or just generally stroking, anything goes. You can usually find us in the woods or up a hill, by the ocean's edge or climbing trees. Follow the little trail of yarn clippings and there we will be, me with some form of fibre in my bag at all times. #118 We try to live a simple, natural and holistic lifestyle, making sure that we connect to nature daily. Fairy tales and seeking out the enchanted in everyday life is a big part of our lives, as is plenty of craft and art. I am a new member of a medieval re-enactment group, the House of the Black Star and have met some amazing people through it. I have much to learn from them. In this blog I hope to inspire and share with you the things which inspire me. Feedback is always enjoyed and appreciated. Comments on my blog are always loved! I hope a little woodland magic makes you happy today! #037 Find me on facebook Ravelry Craftsy Etsy Pinterest
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4 Responses to Foraging for an Autumn Rainbow

  1. Oh oh clever you! These yarns are to treasure. They do all go together and are such rich shades. Please can I come on the weekend and you teach me?? I have been intimidated of dyeing yarn in case I felted it! May I beg a tutorial post…..
    Here the spring becomes brighter and hotter and things begin to grow alarmingly! We enjoy the last of the winter citrus. It rolls down the hill into my seedling bed in the night. Possums I think playing games xx

  2. lluisa74 says:

    Oh wow, those colors are just beautiful, really well done. I have never tried something like that, in fact I just buy the wool and then I crochet or knit, but I hope someday be able to work in a more deeply way with the yarn.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Have a lovely day!

    Lluisa xx

    • Thank you so much! There is a certain something about having spun, dyed and knitted/crocheted something. Do try it, it is lots of fun, and so satisfying when it goes well! Thank you, have a lovely day too!

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