I was in the mood to experiment with a few colors of Wilton's dye I hadn't used before, teal and purple.  For the teal, I basically followed my normal dyeing method, except that I didn't soak the yarn first and only used 1 tablespoon of vinegar (my new normal) and about 4 squeezes of this squeezy dye bot...more

The Dread Red #3

I've been dyeing since last year, and I've tried a few different things. I've tried to make variegated, tonal, solid, and speckled yarn; tried breaking black; and experimented with different acids and food dyes. But I've been scared of one thing: Red #3.You might wonder why, if you don't spend as much time reading about food dyes as I do. Red #3 is notoriously difficult to set....more

Breaking Black

I've explained my normal dyeing process here before but, to recap: soak the yarn in water for about an hour, remove the yarn from the dyeing vessel, add a bit of food coloring and about 2T of vinegar, add the yarn back (no stirring), and microwave until the dye is exhausted....more

Artificially Rose-Colored Glasses: Why Does The U.S. Still Use Petroleum Food Dyes?

FD&C ("food, drug, and cosmetic") dyes, or food colors, were originally made from coal tar, and are now made from petroleum. Carcinogens like benzene (found in crude oil runoff) are strictly limited in our gasoline in the US, but we still use petroleum dyes contaminated with benzene in our FOOD. Blue dye in your food is the same dye used in your blue jeans....more
Caroline, you are making me want even more to move back to Poland, which tugs at my heartstrings ...more

Shapes, Dyes and Lies: Why We Want Our Food to Look Fake

As a vegetarian, I’ve been asked if I think it’s weird that certain veggie foods like burgers, sausages, and "chicken" nuggets are made to look like meat. Since we refuse meat, why eat vegetarian fare that’s made to look just like it? My reply is that no, these veggie meals don’t look like meat....more

FDA Votes Not to Mandate Warnings for Food Coloring

When it was announced that the FDA would consider adding warning labels to foods with artificial colorings, a collective roar arose from the Internet. In this corner, anti-regulatory proponents, pointing out that any link between artificial colors and behavioral impact remains tenuous; in that corner, plenty of naturalists decrying the need for neon colors in food, and a giant group swapping war stories of how insane their kids get when they eat this or that artificial dye in their snacks. ...more

As someone with food sensitivities I want better, clearer labeling on both food and alcohol ...more

Who Drives the Shopping Cart?

In what’s definitely a step in the right direction, president Barack Obama on December 13 signed the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, making subsidized school meals available to more children and setting new nutritional standards. But the new law does nothing to change the fact that highly processed foods devoid of nutritional value have become the cornerstones of the American diet. Nor does it teach our children how to take a stake in their own nutrition. That’s a job for us parents, one far too many of us are hesitant to take on. ...more