It followed me home… can I keep it?

We had our Guild meeting yesterday and somehow I seem to have come home with the following:

  • a variety of spinning fibre samples: Coloured Cotton, Silk, Camel, Musk Ox, and Quivet
  • Dyed Silk to spin to be woven into scarves for the Guild Exhibition raffle in October
  • A Flick Carder
  • Dying equipment: Syringes, a beaker and a glass stirring rod
  • An Inkle Loom (borrowed from the Guild for the workshop next month with Anne Dixon and also because the Online Guild is doing Inkle Weaving next month as well)
  • A book on colour and a copy of Handwoven and Spin Off (OK these aren’t for me they’re a delivery)

Actually it isn’t too bad… In January or February I came home with 3 big bags of brown carded shetland tops and some black Wensleydale locks. The talk was Knitting for Spinners by Fiona Morris.

It looks like I’ll have to keep spinning and dying then…

I’ve decided to spend the morning dying. The I’d Dye For Britain (rav link) group on Ravelry is doing a dye along on spiral dying so I thought I’d have a go. I’m using a few online tutorials (Diane Mullholand’s, Moggle’s, and Picperfects) and adapting them. Unfortunately my camera is canoeing in Wales this weekend so I’ll have to see if I can get the old one to work.
My plan is as follows:

  • double up my skein of undyed sock yarn (last night)
  • wind into 20g mini-skeins attached together (last night)
  • soak in water overnight (last night)
  • mix up a solution of the dye – I’m using Kemtex Easy Dyes in Sage. (I don’t have instructions so I am winging it). I’ve mixed up about 150 mL
  • Divide this as follows into cups – 10 mL, 20 mL, 30 mL 40 mL, 50 mL (already using my new syringes)
  • Dilute to the same volume in each cup
  • working on cling film dye each mini-skein at a different strength wrapping each into a sausage in cling film
  • lay my sausages in my dying roasting tray and steam for an hour at 150C

Wish me luck….

I should probably admit that this is actually my second attempt. I thought I’dtry and see if I could do this with natural dyes.

I made mini-skeins in different lengths from my 100g of yarn (50%Merino, 50% Tencel)- 5 turns round my end table (yes I do have several niddy noddys but I like using my nested tables as well), then 10, 15, etc to the end of the skein. I thought I could make a triangular shawl and this would keep the colour changes gradual.

I soaked 30 g of logwood overnight. It started a gorgeous purple but overnight turned a funny brown so looking online I added a little tin and the purple returned. I like mordanting at the same time (impatience mostly) so after briningin to a steaming heat (not simmering or boiling, just lightly steaming) I added 8 g Alum, 7 g Cream of Tartar, and the largest mini-skein. Every 7 minutes I added amother one then after they were all in gave another 15 minutes of heating before turning off the heat. Every 7 minutes I would remove a skein (most recent first), allowing it to cool then rinsing. There is a bit of graduation but not as much as I was hoping.

There was a lot oc colour left so I added a skein of sock yarn and some roving as well as a silk scarf. There was still colour in the exhaust so I have put it in a jar and will sture it in the garage to see what aging does to it. I’m going to be doing the dying the reds that the online Guild is doing this month at some point and one of the things we are doing for it is soaking brazilwood and storing it for several months.

Spiral Dying - Logwood

Spiral Dying - Logwood



Filed under Dying

3 responses to “It followed me home… can I keep it?

  1. wow, you’ve been busy, that looks so good yet sounded quite fiddly to do. I am a bit wary of natural dyeing because of the fiddliness (is that a word? hah) Thank you for the link :^)

  2. Oh and I forgot to say that diggerland is a great fun place to go if you’d like to try your hand at using a JCB digger! Even without children…this link is my grand daughter and daughter on a big digger ride, I loved it but not the scary ride! lol

  3. Sounds like you have very interesting guild meetings. Inkle looms follow me home quite often; I now have 8. Hope you enjoy the inkle class. There is so much one can do with this little loom; my experiments have lasted 33 years so far and I am still learning new things.

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