Back in October, when more and more dye mushrooms were coming home with me and the dyepots never cooled down, I’d finished with a good batch of Dyer’s Polypore (Phaeolus schweinitzii) but didn’t have time to do the exhausts, so I stuck the pot outside on my mudroom steps, with all the chunks of mushrooms going back into the dyebath.
At the same time, I found myself wondering what to do with a silk blouse that had a stain on the front. Aha! I thought. Let’s see if it can pick up any colour, and if the colour’s uneven and blotchy, so much the better.
It was a good six weeks before I got back to that dyepot, and even though parts of the blouse had been sitting right on the mushrooms all that time, the colour turned out to be quite even; too even, in fact – the stain still shows! (In the picture is a scarf from the original dyebath – I’ve embellished it with some mushroom beads.)
This is worth experimenting with next year, when I end up with more Phaeolus than my dyepots can accommodate. In the meantime, I still have to come up with some way of hiding that stain!