Dec 022011
 

My friend Kathryn contacted me a few months back about getting some yarn custom dyed.  Her husband is a paralympian and she wanted to surprise him with a pair of gold, silver and bronze striped socks.  I love a good craft challenge so I said yes.  I love dyeing striping yarn (as I’ve said before!) and this was a fun one to do.  Kathryn posted her finished socks today and they look so great!!  I was a bit skeptical of my dye job at first but her end result looks amazing.  Nicely done, Kathryn!

 December 2, 2011  dyeing, other people's crafts Tagged with: , ,  2 Responses »
Jun 152011
 

Enough to go through these shenanigans.

That there is a long hank.

I’d say this is well worth the trouble.

Oh hello there colors, waiting to come out!

I’ve been wanting to do self striping rainbow for a while.  As a first try, I’d say this is pretty good.  The yellow is a little neon and the purple is a bit dark, but now I know what to do next time.  I’m anxious to see how large the stripes are too, as I didn’t plan that part ahead of time.  At least I’ll have a frame of reference of fencepost to fencepost next time I try this.

It’s been too hot to want to knit too much during the day.  Having this yarn dyeing outdoor operation is a nice change.  I wonder, could I somehow rig a dyepot to the gas grill??


 June 15, 2011  dyeing, yarn Tagged with: , ,  4 Responses »
May 212011
 

I love insects.  I never really acknowledged that until adulthood, but I really have been in awe of bugs since I was a kid.  When I was little I could spend forever catching grasshoppers and moths, looking them over, and watching them move about. This fascination arose again once I had children.  The house that our family bought in 2009 has a huge Box Elder tree on the side which, of course, is filled with Box Elder bugs.  My son Atticus, three at the time, was so excited by these bugs that he’d shriek with joy every time we saw one.  What fun to be so excited by something so little and seemingly ordinary.

This week I caught Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo on TV.  This short but sweet documentary explores Japan’s obsession with insects.  I loved this and went to bed thinking about bugs.  I dreamt about bugs.  I woke up thinking about bugs and instantly knew that I needed to work these little insects into my next knitting project.

I had already started this little cotton sundress for the baby.  The pattern is Shades of Summer.  This designer has so many cute patterns for little girls.  Her sample in the pattern has little button embellishments along the bodice.  I loved the look but I knew I wanted something different.  I started embroidering little bugs on it today and I really like the way it looks so far (I especially like the caterpillar!).  There will be bigger insects along the bottom hem.  I think.  We’ll see what it looks like when I get there.

Next up is another insect inspired knit.  I dyed these skeins yesterday and am now trying to decide which and how many to use for the toy that I have brewing in my head.

I’m getting over a particularly nasty case of broncitous, so I took this as a good excuse to not do much today aside from sitting on the porch, knitting, and watching the bugs fly/crawl/scuttle around.  Lots of good inspiration outside today.  So many things to knit, so little time.  I’ll always make time for the bugs, though.

 May 21, 2011  dyeing, knitting, WIP Tagged with: , , , , , ,  1 Response »
Apr 242011
 

We bypassed Easter egg dyeing this year and went straight to yarn.  Much more fun.

The base yarn for today is Patons Kroy sock yarn.  Not the softest but I love the way it wears and it sucks up dye well.

This is using Jacquard Acid Dyes.  I love the colors I get with these dyes.

As an added bonus, I got to hear Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me while I was working (this week featuring John Waters!)

Some spring colors


And an experiment that I’m rather pleased with.  Okay, tremendously please with, not to toot my own horn. 

One of these two will probably end up as a variegated sample for a scarf pattern I’m working on.  Here’s my solid one so far:


I figure that working on a scarf that I’m excited about is the most surefire way to end winter.  Seeing as how it snowed here yesterday that may be wishful thinking.

 April 24, 2011  dyeing, yarn Tagged with: , , , ,  5 Responses »
Jan 242011
 

I love a good loophole. Even when the loophole is in regard to a rule I’ve made (Kind of like I’ve outsmarted myself, heehee). I said I wouldn’t work on any other project until I finished my cardigan but dyeing doesn’t count, does it? I mean, the yarn isn’t for any project in particular so it’s not really another WIP. Right? Right?

My new favorite dyeing challenge is overdyeing colored yarn. It’s relatively easy to start with bare yarn and come up with a color scheme that you like, but adding onto an existing color throws a wrench into the mix. I have quite a few nice skeins of yarn in my stash whose colors I’m not too crazy about. Most of these were either given to me or were orphaned in a clearance bin somewhere and I couldn’t pass them up. I am thrifty beyond belief and I will, in fact, buy yarn that is hideous if it’s a good enough price.

I’ve had quite a few nice surprises this month with overdyes. I hope you like them too.

The first one was an overdye of a skein of Knit Picks Bare worsted that had an unfortunate outcome with the first round of dye.


Sorry, should have warned you to shield your eyes. Bright, huh? Who needs that much pink? A dip in a blue dye bath gave me this:

Ah, better.

Next, a beautiful yarn handed down to me by a friend. It’s Spotlight Basics, a beautiful Australian wool, but just wasn’t a color I could see myself knitting with.

So in a crazed state I went nuts with various colored dyes. When all was said and done I couldn’t even remember what colors had gone into the pot, but I love the golden brown color that resulted:

From this same friend came two skeins of Sandnes Lanett, some wonderfully soft merino wool in fingering weight. Again, not my color. Actually, this was the color my living room was when we bought our house and it almost made me not want to buy the place. Almost.

Since I am a sucker for stripes, as I’ve said, I decided that this yarn would evolve into self striping sock yarn. Behold:

If my math is correct (which is nearly always is – thanks, math degree!) each stripe will be two rows thick with a 7-stripe repeat. I can’t wait to try this out. Striped knee highs, here I come…. eventually.

And although it wasn’t my favorite dye job, this is my favorite in terms of transformation. Two skeins of Soles & More that I got on super clearance at Joanns.

At a dollar a skein, I couldn’t pass up the chance of $2 socks. The colors of this yarn are so awful but with 75% wool and 25% nylon, I love the wash-ability of it. So this went from pastel stripes to:

semi solid ruby deliciousness. Mmm. I can’t wait to see how the original stripes add to the slight variegation of this one. I think this will look great as either Absinthe or Evening Stockings for a Young Lady. Hmm, this may be getting dangerously close to working on a WIP. I’m off to go work on my sweater now.

 

 

 

 January 24, 2011  dyeing, yarn Tagged with: , , ,  5 Responses »