Copper Chlorophyllin

Copper Chlorophyllin extract is a concentrated natural dye obtained from alfalfa, stinging nettles or from other edible plants.

This extract can be used to dye any fiber previously mordanted with alum and cream of tartar or gallnuts or aluminium acetate for cellulose fibers.   Different shades of natural green can be obtained depending on the formula and the mordant used.

Chlorophyllin can also be used in liquid paints, watercolors, inks, binders and soaps. 

Chlorophyll is the main photosynthetic pigment of plants. It is present in most of plants and in certain bacteria and algaes.  It is able to capture light energy and convert it into biochemical energy, essential for life.

Chemically, chlorophyllin (an essential molecule for plants) is very similar to hemoglobin (essential molecule of animals).

I have found the Copper Chlorophyllin wool yarns that I have dyed with alum to have good lightfastness in a sunny window, and they exhibited no change in color. 

This is a very potent extract.  When I dyed wool yarn for the first time, I used the recommended amount of almost an ounce in my dye pot. That’s a lot and it wasn’t a good recommendation!  I did get a deep green, but dyeing it so concentrated all at once, made the yarn a little more coarse and the results less even.  So, I recommend starting with less, (1-5% of the weight of fiber to be dyed is often recommended, or 2 grams, or a teaspoon per 1 or 2 yarn skeins).  Botanical Colors recommends .25% WOF (weight of fiber) for light colors, .5-1.5% WOF for medium colors and 5-10% WOF for dark colors. 

After I dyed the first very dark greens in the first very concentrated bath, all subsequent baths came out pretty much the same nice, warm green, until the dye bath was pretty much exhausted and all those yarns retained a nice soft hand to the fiber.  Notice that I said that all subsequent yarns came out pretty much the same color.  I noticed that mentions that you should re-mordant after the first dye bath and do another dye bath, the same strength as the first  (2 grams of chlorophyllin was their suggestion) to achieve a darker green.  You can just gently simmer the dye bath for about 45 minutes to an hour with this dye.