Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Dyeing Bonanza

Over the last few days I've been in a dyeing frenzy. It all started with the group meeting on Saturday - when we had a use up day. The idea was to use up all the odd amounts of dyes that were cluttering up both the group stash and our own. It was great fun and some odd results particularly with some of the older dyestuff.

Sunday the house was full of dripping rovings and Mr S complained that he couldn't get in the shower!

Monday, after reading on Marjie' Dye Studio blog that is it possible to dye wool with old Procion MX as if a acid dye - to have a go dyeing some Falkland. This was due in some part to inadvertantly buying the wrong dye some time ago. I didn't get good results so I am not sure what she did I didn't but there certainly wasn't any vibrant colours from my dyeing - dull, dull, dull and green exhaust!!! But there sure was when I tried the same dye stuff with silk

Don't you just love my loo seat - not real cat paws honest..

25grams of white tussah silk, soak for 45 mins in one gram of Kemtex Procion MX Dark Brown - then fixed with 20grams of salt and 5 grams of washing soda.

Then I did the same with some turquoise dye and got the same fantastic result..

Yesterday I dye 200 grams of Superwash Merino and added it to the pile....

and today some BFL - Bitter Chocolate, it isn't dry yet but I am 'right chuffed'- it is just what I pictured - that dark dark bitter chocolate that you get in France - the proper stuff that isn't sweet and doesn't stick to the top of your mouth - uck!

Ok I'm crazy, I don't like chocolate, well certainly not the stuff that is sold in the UK, and I'm not that keen on sweets either I'd much rather have a really sour apple or best of all I love sucking lemons - it is just making my mouth water just thinking about the taste - yum..

Just wondering when on earth I am going to find the time to spin all this - night shifts perhaps?

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Call me romantic or what?

Sunday - the sky is a perfect azure blue (oh how I wish that I could dye that identical colour!) and me and Mr S are in Sandbanks drinking coffee in a beach-side cafe. So? Well 23 years ago that's where Mr S proposed - all very romantic - not -it was a freezing day! Last year Mr S's wedding ring broke and then he was in hospital (with a hand woven woollen wedding ring), we had intended to buy new ones in Scotland, but we never did get there this summer - so eventually after much 'umming and aahing' we bought new rings and where better to exchange them but at the place where it all began...

Thursday, 14 October 2010

What's a failure?

They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder - but what constitutes a failure? Recently 'woofnwooly' bought some of the Exmoor Blueface from Coldharbour Mill which very kindly shared with C and myself. I am going to spin half undyed and dye and spin the other, hoping then to discover more about the fibre - K went the whole hog and kettle dyed 150grams - with unexpected results - he used rust, red, sunshine yellow and moss green and got - flame red - he then over painted with some brown and moss green and below is the result.......

Which I really like and K hates, in fact this was destined for the bin until I intervened - OK it has felted quite a bit, which is really disappointing, but there is a lot of good fibre which will be great for a warp thread (probably a cushion cover) - so what was one person's failure was another's gain.

Lesson - one - possibly Exmoor Blueface is best not kettle dyed - two - that for 150grams of fibre in 3 litres of water with 40grams of citric acid and 40 grams of salt will set the dye - three - there was no exhaust (the topic of many a rant on this blog) which is good, but no control, had this been hand-painted then we might have got some of the autumnal hues hoped for and less felted fibre.

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Just words

My lovely PhD supervisor is one of the most un-worldly people I know, and one of the most absent minded, despite having a 'state of of the art' blackberry (bought by his wife in an attempt to make him more organised) he still turns up to meetings late and on one memorable occasion said 'I know I am meeting someone - is it you?'

But even he has now taken on board some of the new words that have crept into the language over the years. The verb to 'google' being one such example - he got a round of applause for that one! But that is by the by - Thursday we took E shopping for her birthday - on these occasions she refers to me as Auntie Gok - yet another word that needs no explanation - and we did have fun, she and Mr S were foot weary at the end of the day - can't say I found it that hard, but as they said I had been sat down all day.....

Bought her a super bright pink gilet, which I am so envious about that I think I shall have to get one for myself - especially as my wardrobe is looking decidely empty since the grand clear out last weekend. The British Heart Foundation Shop benefited by four large bags and I now have quite a lot of empty hangers just waiting to be filled - (plus some drawer space which I immediately filled with patchwork and bag material) well I have dropped 4 dress sizes since last September and my stress starvation diet......

Here's this weeks spinning - Remember, Remember - 100 grans of super soft Falkland spaced dyed with red, yellow, blue and black - 345 metres. Mr S is hoping for a pair of socks from this - time permitting....
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