~Tom’s shoes are the best! Not only do they donate a pair of shoes to a needy child, each pair comes with a nifty, cotton, drawstring bag, Now I know that you are supposed to store your shoes in the bag, but what?? Not happening at my house, shoes need to air out and breathe. What to do with the bag? Dye it and iron on some scrap fabric! Hurrah! Loving my new, repurposed knitting project bag. The bag in the background is now in a vat of green dye. If you look closely, you can see that I like the mottled-dye look
~Hello My Pretty! I fell in love with this roving the minute I laid eyes on it at Happy Ewe! It is so not colors I wear. What was there about the braid of 85% Polworth Wool/15% Tussah Silk Fiber, color way: Rainbow Bright by Western Sky Knits (WSL) that called my name?
As I was undoing the braid, I was overtaken with total amazement. I was expecting the colors of the rainbow because of the Rainbow Bright name: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. Keep in mind, I’ve looked at My Pretty every day since purchase AND shared it with the spinning class but never noticed that I’m looking at a color way in the print color wheel!
Watch out, my science brain is taking over! There are 3 main types of color models/wheels which have different primary colors; dye, print and light. I taught this for 23 years but never had it “hit-me-in-the-face” before.
A brief description of each without all of the vocabulary and science which usually accompanies a lesson.
1. Most of use are familiar with the dye color model/wheel we learned about in elementary school which has the primary colors of red, blue, and yellow. Combining the primary colors give us the secondary colors of red + yellow = orange; yellow + blue = green; blue + red = purple.
2. On the printed page the colors we see are based on tiny little dots so close together that our eyes blend them together into colors. This is based on the CMYK color model: cyan (C), magenta (M), yellow (Y) and black (K). Get a magnifying glass and look at the Sunday comics, easy to see the dots. The primary colors of print are: cyan (C), magenta (M), and yellow (Y). The secondary colors obtained by mixing the primary colors are not exactly the same as the secondary colors of dye, but create values of the colors: Magenta + yellow = orange; yellow + blue = yellow green; blue + magenta = purple. Combine all colors to get black, the black isn’t a true black that’s why real black is added. Think of the color cartridges you purchase for your color printer.
3. The colors emitted by a light source which go straight into our eyes; for example TVs, computer screens, stage lights are based on adding light together. The primary colors of light are red, blue and green. The secondary colors are red + blue = cyan; blue + green = yellow (yes, yellow); green + red = magenta. If all three primary colors are projected at a single spot, white light results. Next time you’re at a play, notice that all of the footlights are either red, blue, or green. The lights are combined to make different colored spotlights; including white.
So, when I unbraided My Pretty, much to my delight I noticed that the CMYK color model was used to produce the color way: magenta, orange, yellow, yellow-green, aqua, purple and black. And, as expected the black is not a true black it’s more of a very, very, dark, midnight blue. Here is My Pretty folded into a CMYK color model: Magenta, orange, yellow, yellow-green, aqua, purple, and black. Very clever dyer! Now it’s time to get to the wheel and have some fun!
~ Happy Birthday to my granddaughter. How can it be 9 years? I’m afraid she inherited a very strange gene from me. As a kid I had fair hair and freckles. I just HATED those freckles, especially the biggest one on my nose. I asked mom when the freckles would go away and she told me when I was grown. Well, the morning of my 8th birthday, I ran to the mirror to see my new “freckle-less” nose. Hum, imagine my surprise when they were still there! I just knew turning eight meant I was grown up! Then before she turned eight, daughter Sarah told anyone and everyone within earshot that when she was eight she needed a desk of her own because she’d be grown up! My parents gave her a kid-size, roll-top desk. And then there’s Maddie, at eight she told her mother, “Mom I need to wear lipstick everyday now because I’m a lady.” The “I’m-All-Grown-Up-At-Eight”, such a funny gene to pass along. It does not seem to affect the male line, only the oldest daughter.
Anyway, both Maddie and I are having a hard time with their move to Hawaii. I decided to make a shawl for her out of the first yarn that Curls and I dyed. Asterope by Romi Hill was the perfect pattern, which I downloaded through Ravelry. I had seen a model of the pattern at a LYS. I know the pattern is described as having an arrow going down the back, but to me it looks as if it’s hearts entwined; thus, Maddie’s and Grandma’s Hearts Entwined. The blended colors are pink and purple. Maddie’s favorite color is pink and grandma’s is purple. The large holes represent all of the adventures Maddie is going to have Every stitch is a kiss and the entire shawl is a huge hug. She’s to wear it when she misses grandma or thinks grandma misses her. When I send it, I’ll enclose a note for Maddie explaining all of the special meanings. I know it’s late, but our family never minds late presents we feel as if the special occasion has been extended!
I dyed the yarn using KoolAid, posted April 19 as Guess I’m Not A Vanilla Type Of Gal. I have been very slowly spinning the yarn. I decided I don’t like this yarn. I think it was Polworth. I bought something “cheap” to practice with. To me, it is as if I’m spinning with iron! It was great fun dyeing. Another reason I haven’t finished the yarn is that I don’t have a clue as what to knit. If you know me, that is not usual! 😎 I’m open for suggestions!
This was the dyed fiber.
This is the spun fiber on the spool.
I’ll be ready to ply soon. Input needed! What should I knit? So not my colors! 😎
After seeing the sweater Anne Field had in her Spinning Wool: Beyond the Basics book and reading that the gray wool had been dyed I made a blog comment. Sweaty Knitter told me that she has died gray wool and it comes out quite nicely. As mentioned, when I was on the Northwest Trip, I purchased all gray spinning fiber. Sigh….. Now that I am home in sunny San Diego I don’t want all of that gray! 😎 I did an experiment. I took a two piece of gray wool, one from each gray fiber type purchased. To insure that all of the parameters were equal I followed these steps: 1. soaked both together in vinegar-water for 30 minutes, 2. added a previously prepared blue dye to a black, plastic container (one that frozen food comes in), 3. put both gray wool samples side-by-side in the container. Waited about 10 minutes and then turned both over, 4. put the container in an aluminum-lined, plastic shoe box, 5. put the top on the shoe box and placed in the sun (behind the retaining wall so Hans could not reach). I left the samples out in the sun for a few days; partly because the weather was drizzly or spitting, I wanted to make sure it heated up well enough. When I took the samples out, the dye was almost all exhausted. These are the results.
One sample was Gray Norwegian Top. This fiber has some long, coarse black hairs in it. You can see that the black hairs did not absorb any of the dye. This has left this sample looking as worn denim. A very pleasing color.
There isn’t a tag on the other gray fiber. I don’t know what it is. I asked my spinning teacher and she wasn’t sure either. It is more of a brownish-gray color. It has some white hairs sticking out from it. It dyed a darker blue color, which looks like new denim jeans. Another pleasing color.
I’m only going to dye one of the grays. I decided to spin both samples. I found that the brownish-gray was by far the easiest for me to spin. Remember, I just started spinning about 2 months ago. Here is both of the spun samples. Top: Brownish-gray sample, Bottom: Gray Norwegian Top. So what do you think?
Ok, I’m a retired high school teacher and taught Computer-aided Graphic Design. I just had to “play” with Lightroom since I went to the seminar last Thursday in Los Angeles. I LOVE the clarify slider in Lightroom. Had to combine what I learned in Lightroom and then use my old friend Photoshop to layout.
Yesterday I started spinning some vanilla colored Ashland Bay Portuguese Wool Top Spinning Fiber. After spinning about 20 oz I decided I could not spin that vanilla color one more minute. It was so boring I almost fell asleep at the wheel. Yawn. I kept saying, “Dye it when you’re done.” Didn’t work. Pulled out the crockpot and some KoolAid. I tried a new dyeing method. Don’t you just love craft blogs? I found this method at the do stuff! blog. This should make kind of a “spotchy” yarn. Filled the crockpot with water and added some vinegar, even though Kool-Aid has citric acid this is thick wool and I wanted to make sure. Added the wool, poked it down, turned it over, tons of air in this top. You can see air bubbles in the picture. Soaked for about 20 minutes. Then turn crockpot to high; it only has a low and a high setting. Let it “cook” for an hour.
Colors I used; Ice Blue Raspberry, Orange, Strawberry, Lemonade, and Lemon-Lime:
Sprinkled Lemon-lime color on one side and orange on the other. Yes, the Kool-Aid package was torn open and sprinkled directly onto the yarn top. I did have to poke the orange a bit so it would dissolve. You can see some of the orange Kool-Aid chunks in the picture. I left a swath of neutral color in the middle since I know the colors will bleed together. Kinda reminds me of the Italian flag!
Top back on and let it cook. Had to show this picture of my favorite dying tool – the wooden fork! It is the best yarn-poker, turn-the-wet-yarn-over, and lifter-out-of-pot tool ever!
After about 30 min the dye was exhausted. I carefully turned the yarn over, making sure I kept the green side to the left and orange to the right. This time, I sprinkled blue on the green side and 1/2 of the strawberry package onto the orange side. Red is so strong it will just take over if a whole pack is used. Blue + green = Blue-green; Red + orange = red=orange. Yum! Last dye step. After all of the blue and the red have been exhausted, look for any white spots and add yellow lemonade. You can see that there is a small white line going around the yarn top. Gently turn the yarn and add yellow to the back portion. Now the yellow lemonade has been sprinkled all around. After the yellow has been exhausted, I let the yarn cool down in the crockpot. With spun yarn I dump it into a colander to drain the water. This is my first time doing a top, it seems more fragile. I did not want to agitate too much, so I turned the crockpot off and let it cool down slowly.
Ta Da! The final product. I let the top cool down in the crockpot, carefully lifted into the colander to drain for awhile, then gently rinsed in a cake pan. Now it’s on the boot tray to dry. Love the boot trays from Target. They are large, heavy, unbreakable plastic, with about 1/2 inch lip all around. Perfect for putting wet yarn on.
My husband said, “It looks like cotton candy.” 😎 Really is quite vivid. When it dries, I’ll spin it. Can’t wait to see how the splotchy colors turn out!!! Easy peasy way to dye.
Off to sister Barb’s today. What trouble can we get into? At least, how much trouble can we get into that allows Curls to sit with her sprained ankle up?
Q – This is my dye challenge the Fair Isle Beret featured in Prima November 2009! Will I be able to take the raw yarn below and dye it to match the purple, brown, and pink colors found in the beret? Saturday was rainy, windy day so I couldn’t go outside and use the Jacquard dyes, I don’t like using them inside. I stayed warm and dry indoors and used food color dye. I know, I know, these colors tend to be WAY to bright, but that’s what was in the house. After rewinding the yarn onto the nitty noddy, it was soaked in a mixture of Kookaburra Delicate and vinegar for 48 hours. Since I don’t need as much brown and pink yarn, I made small 20 gram hanks which were soaked in the mixture for an hour.
I used Wilton’s Food Coloring in brown, pink, and purple. See the dye splotches? I was just checking to see the colors. Very cool! They really do look BRIGHT! The brown looks more greenish. We’ll see!
I started with the brown. It really looks green. Amazing how you can’t tell what color the yarn will be based on the color of the liquid. I added about 8 cups of water into the crockpot and poured in about 2 tablespoons more vinegar for mordant. I poured in brown dye until it looked as if it were dark enough. I was trying for a tan color, not dark brown. I’m thrilled with the crockpot that I found on Friday for $8! Another one of my fabulous thrift store finds. Thank you to the person who gave it away.
Turned the crockpot to high. It took about an hour for the dye to be exhausted. Took the yarn out and cooled it. Really wasn’t 100% happy with the color so after I dyed the pink and the purple yarns I redyed the brown and it turned out perfect! The first time it was too mottled and there were green spots.
The pink yarn was dyed next. Rather interesting that the pink dye left a pink rim around the inside of the crockpot. It turned out a bit to bright, even though I used about 1/8 teaspoon to 1 cup of water. It was then diluted further when only a tiny bit was added into 8 cups of vinegar – water mixture in the crockpot. Everything I’ve read said that adding vinegar to pink food coloring or easter egg dyes would make a lighter color. Didn’t work in this instance. I put it into Oxyclean and desaturated it a tiny bit. Rinsed really well.
Last to dye was the purple. It really came out mottled. I had soaked the yarn in yarn soak for about 48 hours so the yarn was throughly wet. I have about 100 grams of wool. It took a few hours to exhaust the purple. After I took it out it didn’t look as if it was the purple I was looking for. It’s hard to see but the yarn is too periwinkle blue with lots of hot pink thrown in – definitely not what I’m going for! Pretty, but not up to meeting the challenge. So, I decided to wait until the morning to check it in morning light. Since yesterday was sunny, I took the purple yarn outside and studied it. It really was too periwinkle blue – hot pink- blue instead of a purple. It had to go back into the dye pot. Re-soaked the yarn for an hour. Then I made a mixture of two purple Kool-Aids. Kool-Aid has citric acid as the main ingredient so I didn’t add any more vinegar to the water mixture. Added the yarn, plugged in the crockpot (lol), and heated the yarn-dye bath until all of the dye was exhausted. The dye was perfect.
Original purple which had to be redyed:
Voila! The results! The colors in “real-life” turned out quite well. Recap time: 1. The brown had to go through the dye bath twice, but the food coloring worked just fine, 2. The pink frosting turned the yarn “hot pink”. Redyed with pink lemonade and the results were a much softer pink. 3. The purple frosting gave a periwinkle-hot pink-blue color so I redyed with purple Kool-aid! I think the results are close enough to meet the challenge. What do you think?
A note about yesterday – It was one of those days! Sister Barb, Curls, was having a wonderful day, with her husband, at the bike race in Los Angeles.
While riding along doing wonderfully well, her bike fell over on her. I personally think the bike turned into “Christine”. lol She ended up with a bruised, swollen ankle. Thus proving my point that yesterday was really Friday the 13th!
Poor Curls is RICEing her ankle today so we aren’t having our Monday Meeting. When she’s feeling better she’ll probably tell you all about it.
Ok, I had a tax reprieve from yesterday – they’re not due until tomorrow! So, ta-ta I’m off to have real fun! lol I just have to resist the call of the Siren aka Mariah the Spinning Wheel. Taxes, taxes, taxes!
Years ago I read an very funny article can’t remember the author, think it was Gene Sheppard, or what the entire article was about. What I remember is the description of a car the author had that was an awful shade of green. He referred to the color as “goat-vomit-green”. That’s how I feel about this yarn. What was I thinking? Try as I may, I could not get the digital camera to show the true ugliness of this yarn! I did make a yarn cake holder for my sister from the yarn Now, I’ve decided to try some Kool-Aid on it.
I had a left-over mixture of Blue Ice Lemonade and Lemon- Lime so I tried that first. It turned into a beautiful green color. But, I decided it looks to much like a primary school color and that’s not what I’m after.
I decided a reddish color might just be the ticket. I put a sample into Black Cherry. The sample is such a beautiful dark red-orange color. It is stunning. This is the comparison:
Out came the nitty noddy and the ball was turned into a skein. I love my home-made nitty noddy. Made it from instructions found on the web at The Lost Pages. I brought the measurements to the hardware store and had them make the cuts for me. I spray painted it pink since I didn’t like the PVC pipe with the black writing on it. I made sure that I tied the skein in four places so the yarn won’t tangle.
Skein went into the Kookaburra Delicate soak for 20 minutes. Since Kool-Aid already has citric acid added as the first ingredient, I didn’t add any vinegar to the soak or Kool-aid solution. I know different people have mentioned they add salt to the mix. I didn’t since salt is the second ingredient in Kool-Aid. Go figure!
While the yarn soaks, I prepare the Kool-Aid mixture. It is recommended to use 1 package of Kool-Aide for every ounce of yarn. I have 2.5 ounces of yarn so I used three packages. I added about 72 ounces of water. Using my handy-dandy, recycled, plastic, 48 oz, mixed nut container as a measuring cup.
After 20 minutes, I squeezed the excess water gently from the soaked yarn. I don’t bother to rinse the yarn out. The yarn goes into the Kool-Aid mixture which is the same temperature as the soak so there isn’t any temperature shock to felt the wool. I push the wool into the dye bath so all parts are under. Now, I turn the stove on to a medium heat – just enough to cause the bath to simmer. I keep checking until I see that the dye has been depleted. You can see that the yarn has absorbed all of it.
This lot only took about 25 minutes. Now I dump the yarn into a colander to drain. To cool the yarn down, I transfer the skein to this fabulous boot mat that I got for $2 at Target! I have to go back for more. I need some for planting my seedlings. What you can’t see in the picture is that there is a slight variation in the way the dye was absorbed so the yarn has a great variation of colors. Now all I have to do is wait for the yarn to cool, gently rinse it, then soak in the Kookaburra Delicate, squeeze, and dry. I’ll post the dried yarn later.
I’m going to stay home today and go out into the garden for awhile. My flowers are screaming for attention! Really have to get my flowers blooming. My house’s totem butterfly, the Gulf Fritillary, hasn’t been around much thanks to the winter. I had one last week and I’m sure it followed Barb home because she said it showed up at her place!! We live about 40 miles apart. I told her she’d better bring it back. This is the basket I keep by the back door and always take into the backyard. As a Girl Scout, I’m always prepared. It contains: camera, butterfly book, bird book, sunglasses, a book to read, and binoculars.
~Today’s spinning retreat was AWESOME! To paraphrase the song, Cecelia Quinn proved to be a mighty teacher. She’s a traveling teacher from Alaska and if you get a chance to take one of her classes just do it! We learned a great new way to join so there wasn’t a clunky seam (as I usually get). Split open the bottom, put the new yarn in the middle perpendicularly, then bend the new yarn down. Really looks good! Spun with a wide assortment of fibers – even cashmere! The visual demonstration of carded yarn vs. combed yarn was perfect for understanding how the two differ. The main technique for spinning was the long draw. I just started spinning a month ago and hadn’t gotten to the long draw yet. Now to practice! Why do instructors make it look so darn easy?
Of course there were all types of goodies to purchase! After much deliberation, I selected a 20% silk, 40% wool, 40% camel blend. The yarn is from Chasing Rainbows Dyeworks by Nancy Finn. It’s so gorgeous! Fingers are itching to start spinning. I think it will be the perfect yarn for Jojoland’s Berry Tam. All of the colors will segue beautifully. On our Northwest fiber journey we saw a model of the hat at Yellow House Yarns. What a wonderful shop! Friendly, helpful, staff and wonderful yarns! Got a few great ideas which we will be slowly sharing with you.
30% change of rain over the weekend here in San Diego, Ca. If it is nice, as today was, I’m going to do some dyeing. Barb works Saturday so I’ll have to have fun without her. I have some great undyed top screaming out to dye. I’m thinking forest colors. But, I do get in a rut and pick the same colors – my “comfort” colors. I’m trying to step outside of my comfort zone and pick a different pallet. See the orange in the roving above? That’s what I’m talking about. Maybe something with these colors, Browns, Grey, rust, golden yellow, peach:
Using the dropper in Photoshop can help isolate a great pallet!
Ah, my special iris. This is the great-whatever-grandchild of an iris my grandma planted in the 1940’s. My mom took some rhizomes from grandma so we had this iris at every home we lived in as children. When Barb and I grew up and had homes of our own we snagged rhizomes from mom. This is a family heirloom. We’ve told our kids that they have to keep the tradition alive! This iris brings back so many memories every year when it blooms. We live in San Diego so things bloom earlier here.