Here is another batch of fleece that I dyed because I couldn't throw away the dyebath without exhausting it completely. Such beautiful pale colours.Due to my (most probably late night) neglect, you can see bits of white where I didn't prep the fleece properly and dye didn't get. Nevermind. Good thing I'm a fan of loving and embracing all mistakes!There's enough here to make a nice shawl I think. Or matching jumpers for twin babies maybe? Or some mittens and a hat for a cold spring day. We shall just have to wait and see what it wants to become. kxo
I have a really hard time throwing away dyebath. Like- I just can't. haha. At least until I've exhausted it a few times. So I end up dyeing loads of fleece and end up with a pile of light shades from leftover dyebath. These particular colours were from when I dyeing Pink and Green for the 'Bi' exhibition. (I combined the blue and yellow to make green). It was using commercial dye and I kept getting it confused with my natural dye bits SO I decided to just spin it up and just add whatever there was to my stockpile of yarn ready for knitting.A very pleasent thing happened as I was doing this. I had two shades of each colour (the first exhaust, and the second). Instead of just mixing it together, I spun the first exhaust and the second exhaust seperatly and plyed them together. The result is a pleasing two-toned effect. And I like it so much- I think I'm going to try this with the next batch of Natural dyeing I do.Subtle but special. Also it was super fun to spin so tiny. I usually don't have the patience but I kind of wanted to make it go as far as possible. I know. I'm a dork. It's not enough that I've already saved some dyebath from waste. Sometimes my need to reuse & recycle gets me into trouble. Like all the paper I've been stockpiling for years... Perhaps I should make up some kits and sell them? Love you. kxo
I know it's not a wednesday- but here are some pretty fibres that's on my wheel at the moment.I haven't had much of a chance during 'exams' to do any spinning just for myself- so as soon as the exhibition was over- I carded up this lovely bluey fleece and just went for it. it's got bits and pieces of curly sheeps wool, mohair, and some dyed & undyed english wool. The natural fibres give it a really great crimp. It'll be a nice chunky once I ply it up. Plus the subtle change from light-dark makes it really interesting to spin. <3 Have you started working on anything 'just for you' yet? Summer is here! Kimxo
At college- we are preparing some work for an external exhibition, at a pretty famous design agency in London. There are several restrictions that all of our work has to conform to. It's got to be presented in a white frame and we are only allowed to use two colours- Pink and Green. A lot of people are doing prints, where the colours can be overprinted to create a kind of grey/purple, and of course there's always the question of how opaque do you want the colours to be etc...
To make sure that I could really control the colours, and that they would been consistent- I decided to dye my wool! As Green is one of the hardest colours to achieve in Natural Dyeing- I opted for the quicker 'dye packet' method. I know, I know... but I've never tried Woad or Indigo dyeing before, and as it's a pretty tight deadline, I just needed to get it done. haha. Still- I managed to 'mix' the colours nicely until I got the perfect shades. I took some process photos too, to share with you:I did a lot of experimenting. Some were too yellow or taupe, and the navy mix never really lightened enough to be green. haha! Eventually I got there..It was incredibly fun to play with the ratio of water to dye, and how long to soak and mixing the yellow and different blues. I also tried mixing the pink and green dyebaths, but they didn't really come out- so I'm sticking to this lot (down below). I got the colours approved by the curating team- now I just need to actually knit the designs I've been making. eep! Here they are all spun and rolled into balls/cones- ready to be knitted up!
Love you, Kimxo
Hello! This is a blend I made- originally to be half of a yarn that would be used in my first jumper- but now that it is all spun up it's almost too pretty to combine with the turqouise below...What do you think? I wanted it to be playful and vibrant (as this will be the only handspun in my jumper, and the rest of the colours are browns, creams and mossy greens)- which is why I added in lots of touches of other colours. In the 'Apricot & Mustard' blend, I added bits of orange, yellow, grey and a teensy bit of red. And in the 'Turqouise', there are hints of apricot, mustard, jade(mohair!), grey and a pale lavendar.No idea if I'll ply them together or not. It was really really fun to design, card and spin so no doubt I'll make some more in the future... or something similar at least! Kimxo
p.s. Wool is so soft. <3
Here is something to get you relaxed for your sunday afternoon.
This was just shot quickly (well, it took me 3 hrs to spin it!) to illustrate an idea for college. It's sort of the first step in a long process I'm involved in at college right now. Thought you'd enjoy it.
Have a good day. kxo
I've been trying out some dyeing lately- like Dyeing wool & fleece. [: It' sgreat fun and I've been experimenting with Natural Dyes. So far, most of my colours have come out really pale- but I'm thinking that might be a mordanting problem (Mordant is a chemical- or substance *hehe, they used to use old urine!*, I'm using Alum- that helps the dye grip onto the wool).
I've been collecting plants and things that give off a colour- here are some of my first little gatherings (most from my own garden)!With some of the tougher dyestuffs, you need to soak them in water overnight, or even for a week or so!It's a really magical and long process, kind of like what I imagine potion-making to be like at Hogwarts! hehe. I've even got a big cauldron! Wish me luck- I'm going to be dyeing with some Logwood tonight- it should (hopefully) come out a violet/lavendar colour!
Have you ever done any tie-dyeing? Batik? Natural dyeing? I'd love to hear your experiences. :]
Having the carder has made spinning a whole lot more interesting and fun! I've been playing with mixing colours more and stripes and things. This was done in the same method as Mum's xmas gift- but I did the gradient (from pinks to yellows) in each batt- so the stripes repeat themselves about 6 times!I added liberal amounts of white to this, to keep it bright and airy. Spun it up as chunky and them plyed with thin cotton thread. I love how you really get to see the mix of colours. So tactile and soft!See more spinning here.
Q: Barnicles wanted to know if the method of spinning is the same when you are plying it with cotton.
A: When you spin the fleece- it's exactly the same. When you ply it with the cotton, you've got to sort of hold the cotton a bit tighter to get that 'crimping' effect. [: I hope that's what you meant. I feel like you can be looser when spinning the fleece, because the cotton is going to give it strength.
This might just be my favourite skein I've done so far! Not that I play favourites... hehe!
Yay! This christmas I made a special blend for my dear friend Heather. She spoke to me about wanting to make some leg warmers- and I know how much she appreciates handmade and skillful crafts (being rather talented herself). Here is the (pretty fat!) skein I spun up especially for her. It's 2ply and a chunky weight.The base colours- a reddish brown and an oatmeal grey, I blended them twice on the carder, to get a more even colour. The brown is mostly acyrillic (so she can wash them!) and the grey is pure BFL wool. It made quite a nice earthy tone when blended. I made this a little more funky by making it a 'tweed'. I added in tons of other colours here and there. It was a great way to use up all that bits I had laying around.I thnk it's going to knit up beautifully! It really reflects on Heather. She's grounded and down to earth- but with tons of hidden moments of happiness and joy and pure brilliance. Not to mention soft and cuddly.Some silly photos of us after she opened her gift. [:Love you!
See more Wool on the Wheel posts here.