I was fortunate enough to obtain a quantity of these mushrooms (dried) from the amazing Alissa Allen (see mycopigments link at the side), who’d collected them in December around Arcata, California. I was swooning in anticipation, because these beauties are purported to give a violet colour, and they don’t grow this far north. So here they are, having soaked overnight in my well water, ready to be cooked up.
Here, then, the results, from left to right: First dyepot, unmordanted wool; first dyepot, mordanted with iron; second dyepot, mordanted with iron; third dyepot, mordanted with copper; fourth dyepot, mordanted with iron; fourth dyepot, mordanted with copper.
As an experiment, I took a bit of wool from the first violet sample and placed it in an ammonia solution (pH9) to see if that might bring out even more of the violet. To my dismay, the sample (seen at the left, under the first violet sample) quickly turned grey. A striking grey, but grey nonetheless. Next to that grey sample is a bit of synthetic “icicle” that picked up the violet colour without a problem.
Being unwilling to let go of this potential colour, I tried yet another exhaust with my little samples, but it was clear the pot had nothing more to give than an uninteresting beige, so I was forced to return what was left back to the forest.
This has been a very exciting dyepot, and I still have half ot the dried Omphalotus to play with again!