An elderberry dye recipe.
The elder tree or shrub is a personal favourite and we've loved experimenting
with the berry's deep red, purple'ish juice as a colouring for playdough.
The blossom and berries ordinarily make the sweetest teas, cordials, and delicious,
albeit heady homemade wine, so playdough seemed a great way to share the
versatility of this plant. The berries do need cooking before use so as to
break down the small amount of toxins they contain, and even though the activity
is a recipe to stain playdough which is already inedible, we still play safe
by simmering the fruits before blending, using it as an opportunity to talk
about the care needed around familiar and unfamiliar wild fruits.
The elder tree on Woodlands Trust.org.uk on RHS.org.uk , Sambucus
on wikipedia and a little about the myth and folklore attached to this
ancient native includinga recipe for elderberry syrup on Elderberryherbals.com
Elderberry dye recipe
50g destalked elderberries
Wash the fruits carefully and rescue any unexpected bugs. Then simmerin
the water for 10 minutes, keeping a careful watch that it doesn't evaporate
too quickly. Remove from the heat and blend. Strain the mixture through muslin
cloth and measure the separated liquid. Make the amount up 120ml if needed.
Place all the ingredients except the lotion into
a saucepan and cook over a medium heat until everything comes together in
a ball. Leave this to cool and then knead until smooth. Add a few spoonfuls
of hand cream and enjoy the squelchy texture as the two mediums combine into
a soft pliable dough.
| Homemade playdough recipe
- 150g plain flour
- 120g salt
- 120ml elderberry liquid
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 tbsp cream of tartar
- a few drops of scented oil (optional)
- Hand moisturiser (optional)
Activity ideas include craft stems and match sticks for inserting into the dough and
pony beads for threading patterns.
Elderberry fabric dyes on google images
Making natural dye recipes from plants
| Grass dye
Onion skin dye