Weekend of Indigo Dyeing at Whitefish Bay Farm Gallery

Whitefish Bay Farm Gallery kicks off the 35th season on May 19 at noon. The gallery specializes in fiber art – hand felting, hand weaving, knitting and crochet – along with beautiful, naturally colored (un-dyed) and naturally dyed yarns from the resident flock of Corriedale sheep. The gallery also features functional pottery and a smattering of photography.

A weekend of indigo dyeing begins May 19. On Friday, natural dyer Gretchen Regnery will concentrate on creating shades of blue on white, light gray and medium gray yarns. On May 20, Regnery will create shades of green on yarn previously dyed yellow. The yellow dyes included marigold, cosmos, goldenrod, onionskins, Osage orange and weld. Shades of purple will be the focus on May 21, when the indigo will be applied to yarns previously dyed with Cochineal, Lac and Brazilwood. The dyeing will take place outside the large barn from 1 to 4 pm each day, weather permitting.

The indigo dye pot is magical. The dyer dips the yarn or fiber into the pot that is colored a coppery yellow-green. After about four minutes the yarn is removed from the pot. The yarn is green at this stage. Once in the outside air, the yarn begins to oxidize and turns blue. The oxidation process continues for 15 to 20 minutes. At that time, the dyer can choose to leave the yarn the shade of blue it is or can re-dip the yarn to create a deeper color.

Whitefish Bay Farm Gallery is located 1½ miles east of Highway 57 at 3831 Clark Lake Road (County WD) – the road to Whitefish Dunes State Park.


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