October 16, 2009


I couldn't help but start spinning the fiber I dyed.

Camera phone photo, sorry.

It's great, easy spinning and I love the blue/green color.

Earlier this week I went to a talk by Kathy Hattori of Earthhues at Theo Chocolates.

Another rotten photo from my phone.

She brought this wonderful worsted-weight wool in 18 colors dyed from 3 dyepots. She explained her process and gave lots on info on some of the main natural dyestuffs they source. It was very interesting and I wanted to gobble up all this yarn!

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October 5, 2009

Dyeing a Bump

I have a two pound bump of Corriedale roving. I bought the fleece with Terri Shea at Black Sheep in '06. We sent it out to be processed. It's been sitting in my closet for a few years waiting to be dyed before spinning. My older son is home sick today so I thought I might finally dye it.

I started to pull a bit off to see what I dealing with. I had a notion that I would be able to just layer it in my big dyepot. It's very loosely held together. I started to imagine it all drifting apart when I hits water. So how do I deal with it?

After a lot of online searching and consulting I decided to wind it off on to my niddy noddy into "skeins" and then tie them loosely with cotton. It's now a massive fluffy pile of wool waiting to be soaked and dyed.


September 11, 2009

Dye and Overdye

I had myself a dye day on Tuesday. I've had this bag of Baruffa 7 Settembre for a few years. I bought it at Oregon Flock and Fiber for $10. It's white superwash merino in a DK-weight. I kept meaning to dye it but never got around to it. I finally borrowed Sasha's skein winder and got the yarn into hanks then tossed them in the dyepot. My inspiration on the color was Azul Profundo by Malabrigo. I didn't get anywhere near the depth of shade but the general idea is there.

The dye bath was completely exhausted and I was going to call it a night. But then I remembered this Koigu Kersti I had from Amanada.

A great yarn in a color that makes me positively ill. So in it went. I splashed in some black, some cyan, some worker blue. Splashed some more. Covered it and went to bed. In the morning the dye was completely exhausted and I had yarn in a color I rather like a lot.

Now, what to knit? The 7 Settembre will be a heavily modified Sylph Cardigan, I think. And the Kersti? No clue.


January 9, 2009

Melusine Inspiration

I'm generally not a huge fan of The Anticraft. Yes, they did have an issue devoted to bacon. But how many impalement themed hats does one need?

But today I saw this new shawl and I have to say I am smitten.

The pattern on the shawl is a very simple leaf lace (okay, they call it scales but I see leaves) but the hand-painting after the shawl is knit is really lovely. I'm deep into sweater mode but I will definitely tuck this idea away for another time.

The name of the shawl, Melusine, has had me thinking all day about Possession which features epic poem about the creature. It's a stunning book. I highly recommend it if you haven't read it.

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November 12, 2008

Over-Dye Success

Ahhh. Much better.


November 10, 2008

Back in the Pot!

I can't seem to capture the super-glow-in-the-dark-screaming-neon-hold-me-mommy-I'm-scared-toxic-waste aspect of this yarn on camera. But, believe me, it's there. I put it back in the dyepot and will try to tone it down with a bit of black.


November 9, 2008

Yellow Plus Black Makes Green

Did you know that? I always thought that you needed yellow and blue to make green. But a few years ago in a dyeing class with Judith Mackenzie-McCuin she pointed out that polar yellow combined with black will create a great green. Last night I tried it by over-dyeing this grey shetland I spun up in April with yellow. Too much yellow, unfortunately.

A little eye-searing. I'm going to wait until it dries and see if I can live with it. Otherwise I toss a little black over it to tone it down.

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June 2, 2008

Calling All Color Geniuses

Linda K gave me these two skeins of Shelridge Farms Soft Ultra Touch back in April. They are not my colors. At all. She insisted I take them anyway and overdye them. I'm stumped, people. My forays in dyeing have been largely disappointing. What do you think? I was going to just slosh some blue in the dye pot and see where that takes me. Any guidance?


September 29, 2007

In Advance of Screen-Free Sunday

I'm making so-so progress on my sock. I've been sick all week (just a cold and a lot of crud in the chest) and I've been kind of spacey. I knit all night on Thursday and realized that I only knit one half of a cable round about 8 rounds back. I had to tink back stitch by stitch. Then I Friday night I knit about an inch or two past where I was supposed to start my heel. Tink. Tink. I finally finished the heel and gusset decreases and am working my way quickly to the toe.

I was stuck at home yesterday waiting for new washing machine to be delivered so I finally dyed the yarn I spun for last year's Tour de Fleece. It's a sweater's worth of Cormo/silk that's bulky and slubby. I put it on the drying rack today and set it outside. While I was at work it started to rain. A lot. Fortunately none had a) blown away or b)gotten totally resoaked. I was going for a dark reddish-brown. I think it will end up much lighter than I'd hoped.

Tomorrow I'm heading to Tacoma to see the Gee's Bend exhibit. Have a great Sunday everyone!

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March 13, 2007

Spriral Baby Blanket

The baby hasn't arrived yet but my gift has. So now I get to share it with you.

Recipient: Molly (how about updating that blog, lady?)
Pattern: Pinwheel Baby Blanket
Yarn: Approximately 12 oz of Henry's Attic Kona Superwash hand-dyed by me
Needle: US5 Addi Turbo
Notes: This is the project that broke my US5 Denise needles. Don't use 'em. They're too small for the cord. This is also the project where I ran out of yarn on the edging. I originally was knitting the Twining Elm pattern from Knitting on the Edge. It used too much yarn so I had to rip it out. Then I chose a pattern called Molly's Lace. Why didn't I pick that in the first place?

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February 3, 2007

Out of the Dye Pot

(I finally was able to upgrade to the new Blogger. Hope it doesn't suck.)

As I stepped out on to the porch to get some photos in natural light it started to rain so the lighting changed quite a bit from my first photo to my last.

First up are the dyeing disaster skeins. They've gone from pukey peach to screaming orangey-pink. Not really all that great of an improvement. They are also seriously underplied. I need to run them back through the wheel for a little more twist.

My friend Jill gave me a partial skein of Rowan Polar on Thursday night. It was a yellowy lentil green.

Now it's a vivid jungle green.

This is one of my class skeins. The colors were kind of weak. I juiced them up a bit and also added some black for low-lights. It doesn't look as much like the Polar skein in real life. The Polar is very vivid while this skein is more mellow.

This skein was also done in class. I had finished dyeing all my skeins and was just chatting with a friend while she was finishing up. We had a big bucket where we dumped all our brush rinse water and odds and ends of dye. The bucket usually was filled with brown, sludgy water. When I peered into the bucket on her table it was the most gorgeous rich mauve. My favorite color. I got a skein of yarn and put it in a baggie. Then I dumped in all the garbage water. I squished it around and dumped out the excess. Since the dye was very watered down I added a little more magenta and cyan. The resulting skein was very pretty but pale. I put it in the dye pot yesterday and poured mauve and maroon dyes over it. After it came out of the dyepot I laid it out on plastic wrap and drizzled some magenta highlights over it. I'm very happy with the results.

The best lessons I've learned so far are use a lot more dye than I think I need and that I can't get complex colors in one pass. I need to dye, hand paint, overdye and keep working a skein until I get a color I like. There are a few other skeins left that still need to be tweaked until they are acceptable.

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