To the right is a picture of the Cochineal extract. I also re-posted the picture of the ground up bugs so you can compare. They look quite different. The extract requires only very small amounts to get the depth of shades. A little goes a long way. I am a bit concerned with the first batch which is cooking at the moment. It is coming out about the same shade as the picture of the ground bugs. I think it is supposed to be not quite so purple. I may be wrong and I need to do a bit more digging. This batch does not have Cream of Tartar added.
When I was washing the skeins for this batch I put them in the washing machine to spin out the excess water as I usually do. There was a bit of grease left over from washing my husband's chainsawing clothes that I missed. It got into the whole batch of skeins so I had to start over and wash them and the washing machine thoroughly. I use our well water to wash the skeins which is hard and has iron or rust in it. It hasn't been a factor, or at least, much of a factor in the past but I usually don't have to wash the skeins that much. I am wondering if it is affecting the color as cochineal is very sensitive to the PH of the water. It will be interesting to see. I will post a picture of the yarns tomorrow evening after they have dried. Tomorrow is the Whidbey Weavers Guild meeting so I will not be dyeing. I will give a report on the meeting. It should be interesting. Got to check the dyepot. -Renee