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McNair Scholars Program

Kelsie Doty, Ph.D.

she/her

Education: Bachelor of Science in apparel and textiles design (May 2013)

Master of Science in apparel and textiles from Kansas State University

Doctor of Philosophy in apparel design from Cornell University

McNair Project: Exploration of Natural Dyes from Maclura pomifera (Osage orange), Juglans nigra (Walnut), and Juniperas virginiana (Eastern Red Cedar) Bark on Wool and Alpaca Yarns (2011)

Mentor: Sherry Haar, Ph.D.

This research examined the color effects of Osage orange (Maclura pomifera), Walnut (Juglans nigra) and Eastern Red Cedar (Juniperus virginiana) bark on mordanted and nonmordanted protein yarns dyed using a solar method for dye extraction. Three different yarns, 100% Alpaca (3-ply), 100% Merino wool (4-ply), and 96% wool with 4% nylon (boucle) were used. Half of the samples were scoured and premordanted with a formula of potassium aluminum sulfate (12% WOF) and cream of tartar (6% WOF). The other portion of yarn was scoured and left unmordanted. The solar dye extraction method consisted of each species of bark, calculated at a 3:1 ratio of bark to fiber, being placed in separate stainless steel pots of water and placed outdoors for one week. The bark was then strained and the dye liquor distributed amongst the wetted yarns and placed outdoors for two weeks. Color differences of the dyed yarns were assessed using American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists Visual Assessment of Color Difference of Textiles descriptors. Yarns premordanted with potassium aluminum sulfate were consistently warmer, brighter and had a more yellow hue to the overall appearance. The 100% Merino Wool 4-ply obtained the darkest color most likely due to the loosely twisted yarn structure and fiber content. Yarns dyed with Walnut bark produced the darkest colors, possibly due to a higher concentration of tannic acid occurring in the walnut bark or the darker pigmentation leached during extraction. Future research will examine colorfastness properties of walnut bark, leaves, and hulls between mordanted and nonmordanted fibers.