Monday, 9 March 2009

Tropical fruits

Not much knitting has been happening this weekend but I did manage to get some dyeing done. I had two hanks of quite an acid yellow from a previous dyeing session - waaaaay back - and I thought hand painting might just salvage them. I also wanted to try to fix them using the microwave instead of steaming them, just to compare the difference. (it would also save my kitchen from a lot of moisture running down the walls :-)

So these first two hanks had the bright lemon yellow base and I played with aquas and jades and a touch of deeper blue on top for the green skein and yummy oranges and marigold yellows, with a hint of darker red for the second skein. These hanks were wound a long time ago and there is only 64 gms on each. No idea why it's not 50gm or 100gm but there you go. I'm sure I can use it for something nice anyway.

The raspberry pink skein was an overly thick hank wound on the lazy kate of my spinning wheel - a very short length indeed. It had been partially dip dyed in light pink and I re-wound it on my niddy noddy into a larger 1.5 mtr skein and hand painted different pinks and reds on top of it. I love these colours and although there is only 74gms of it, I'm loving it anyway.

This last little skein was a baby hank that I thought would be good as a tester. There's only 32gms but it will be interesting to see how the dye bands knit up. I was experimenting with paler colours but I found these a bit wishy washy for me. Very aquatic but not really zingy enough.

The fixing using the microwave did work after a few experiments and is a lot quicker. But I think I'll need to experiment further before I will feel comfortable with the permanancy of the colour.

If you are interested, there are lots of really good books on dyeing your own yarn - Dyeing to knit, Yarns to dye for, and the yarn lovers guide to dyeing to name just a few. These are links to Amazon uk and you can read up their reviews as well. It is really worthwhile having a book as a guide or reference as there are so many little things that can go wrong or time saving tips to help you get successful yarns very quickly. My favourite for the kettle dyeing and microwaving techniques is 'Yarns to dye for' although I do have all three and dip into them for different reasons.

Now, I'll just have to think of what to knit with my tropical fruits!

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Hello and thanks for stopping by. Do stay a while and visit. Please do leave a comment - I'd love to hear from you and be inspired by all your blogs out there too:-) elaine xx


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