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  1. #1

    Default Black deer hair?

    Interested to get input from other dyers on successes and failures with dyeing deer hair black. I recently had my first attempts at it. I used a 50:50 mix of Veniard's and Jacquard's black dyes - on recommendation that one was a blue-black while the other was a red-black and that a mix cancelled the two shades out. That part seemed to work nicely. Where I achieved black-out, it was black!

    My first attempt involved giving the hair a hot bath in detergent, followed be a hot bath in the dye: 3 h @ 85 C. I got the deer hair quite black, though with dark brown tips. However, I got an unwanted effect in the way the individual hairs ended up being rather 'straw-like' - as if the core of the hair had collapsed???



    I wondered if I was over-cooking it? On the next attempt, I did a piece on a long slow heat. I also added a dash of Venpol and some salt to the dye bath.

    1 pt water
    0.4 g Veniard's black
    0.4 g Jacquard's black

    I kept the water down to 65-75 C and gave it 4 hours. The vinegar was added after 2 h. I took it off only because I saw the water clearing. I was surprised at just how much a black dye bath could clear when the material had taken up all the dye! I was quite pleased with the result. Still slightly brownish tips to the hairs, but I can live with that. Only one problem - I had used a piece with tanned skin, which I now realise is taboo! The hair was starting to separate from the skin. I think I have just about managed to rescue it. The hair is fine - I just need to be careful with its storage. I will try a Clan Chief muddler with it and see how it turns out.

    I tried to recreate the exercise with some decent deer hair. In case I ran out of dye the last time, I upped it a bit. 24 h soak in detergent, followed by:

    1 pt water
    0.5 g Veniard's black
    0.5 g Jacquard's black

    Dash of Venpol and 1 tsp salt added to the bath. Vinegar added right at the start. Gave it 6 h at 65-70 C. I took it off the heat when I could see that the bath wasn't going to clear, the way the last piece did.

    Tanned piece on the right; air-dried piece on the left...


    Again, the tips are a bit brown, and overall it's maybe not as black as the tanned piece. However, both pieces are nice and soft - not unlike undyed deer hair. And neither of them have the straw-like collapsed shafts of the first attempt.

    So, what do experienced dyesters think? Am I on the right track? What's your recipe for a good piece of black deer hair?

    Col
    Please note that any views expressed in this post may be those of the
    originator and do not necessarily reflect those of the reader.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Black deer hair?

    Col. I assume you did this on natural grey-ish hair, rather than the pure white hair from the haunches ? Bleached white mat work, but natural would be better i.m.h.o.

    If you want a really strong black acid dye, like the trade uses, p.m. me for details.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Black deer hair?

    Quote Originally Posted by arkle View Post
    Col. I assume you did this on natural grey-ish hair, rather than the pure white hair from the haunches ? Bleached white mat work, but natural would be better i.m.h.o.

    If you want a really strong black acid dye, like the trade uses, p.m. me for details.
    Yes - natural grey roe - hence the brown tips.

    Cheers, will PM for details...

    Col
    Please note that any views expressed in this post may be those of the
    originator and do not necessarily reflect those of the reader.

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