Cochineal Dye is Awesome!

As promised, I’m dyeing with Cochineal today.

Cochineal Dye is derived from dried beetles. I know that sounds gross, but it’s a fact. They can be found on Prickly Pear Cacti, typically in South America. And even grosser – it is still used to color lipstick today. Yes, those are bugs on your lips!


As with the Logwood, I’m using extract on pre-mordented wool today. I have used the actual bugs. They come dried and really look nothing like beetles at all. They have almost a metallic look. They need to be crushed before use. An old coffee grinder works really well, but the old fashioned mortar and pestle will work too. The extract is much easier and comes from the same bugs, so I’ve opted for that.

I’ve used 1 tsp of dye to color 10  oz of fiber. I also added 1/2 tsp Cream of Tartar to the water because our well water is rather hard.


What a beautiful bubble gum pink!!!!!

Next up – Madder Root!

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One Response to Cochineal Dye is Awesome!

  1. Cindy says:

    Another beautiful color!!