How can I mix Cushing dyes to make a Christmas Red?

Name: Patti



Linda Knutson's book
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"Time-tested methods of dyeing gorgeous colors along with more than 30 color photos of rugs and wool swatches are included in this easy-to-use book. The swatches show the outcome of the more than 30 dye formulas provided and the formulas use both Cushing and PRO Chem acid dyes. Also included is a glossary of dyeing terms, step-by-step instructions for various dyeing methods, illustrations of dyeing equipment, lessons on color theory and planning, and tips for both novice and experienced dyers."

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Message: I am trying to dye some wool a Christmas Red, do you have any suggestions as to what color combo to come up with this color over cream wool? I use Cushings dyes. Thank you.

You should contact the Cushing Dye Company and request that they send you a free copy of the color card for their acid dyes. You can see it the Cushing Acid Dye Color Card online, but you can't trust your computer monitor the way you can a color card that has been checked by the manufacturer for accuracy after printing. Looking at the online version of their color card, it seems like their Turkey Red might make a good choice for Christmas red. Imagine it just a bit duller and yellower in color, to make up for the effect of the cream wool you are using; perhaps Crimson would be better.

The W. Cushing dye company recommends against mixing their colors, because they believe that they sell enough different colors to satisfy any need. There are 94 different colors in their line of acid dyes. However, if you must mix your colors, they told me that they recommend the use of Canary, Cherry and Peacock acid dyes as mixing primaries for lighter colors, or Yellow, Blue and American Beauty acid dyes as mixing primaries for darker colors.

If your red dye is producing a color that seems too pink to you for using as a Christmas red, you may need to use more dye, because using too little red makes pink. (Beware, though: using too much red acid dye will result in wool that keeps bleeding dye even after you have rinsed it for a long time.) If your red is more of a bright pure magenta, so that it is too blue in hue to use as a Christmas red, then you can mix a little bright orange dye with it, or yellow dye. Do not start with a red that is too dull in color, because you can't mix anything with a primary color to make it brighter. Be sure to do your color testing on the same wool that you will be working with in your project: using cream-colored wool instead of pure white will make your red a little duller, and will turn it a little more to the yellow side and less to the blue, so tests done on pure white wool will not be completely useful to you.

Cushing dyes are a line of leveling acid dyes, used for wool and other animal fibers. Leveling acid dyes are also known as acid levelling dyes, or by the original brand name for this type, Kiton acid dyes. See my page, "About Leveling Acid Dyes (Kiton type Dyes)". Cushing Perfection dyes used to be a mixture of the Cushing acid dyes, for wool, plus the Cushing direct dyes, for cotton, but now these two different types of dye for different fiber types are purchased and used separately.

As their name implies, leveling acid dyes are noteworthy for leveling very well; this means that the color smooths and evens on the fiber easily, resulting in a single solid color. They are particularly suitable when you want a perfectly even color throughout your work. However, they are also known for being less washfast than other classes of acid dyes. Leveling acid dyes tend to run in the wash, even when washed in lukewarm water; materials dyed with leveling acid dyes must never be washed in warm or hot water, unless you are trying to remove some of the dye. It is important to use leveling acid dyes only in applications for which a high degree of washfastness is not needed; if you are dyeing yarn for baby clothes, for example, you will wish to choose a more washfast line of acid dyes, such as the Lanaset dyes, which can be safely washed even in hot water. Items dyed with leveling acid dyes should be labeled with instructions to hand wash separately in cool water, or to dry clean only.

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Posted: Wednesday - July 10, 2013 at 08:22 AM          

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