Monday, February 12, 2007

Has it Been That Long?

While I was pulling out the dyeing equipment yesterday I tried to remember the last time I dyed. That's one reason why I blog. Just used my search tool and found it was over a year ago!

I have some roving I want to dye, along with two blanks from Machine Knitting to Dye For's self-striping hat. I had in my mind a blue-green, red-orange, and some shade of violet. I looked back at the samples I did a couple of years ago to use as a starting point. In fact I still had some of those 2 yard lengths of 2/8 wool I used back then.

I like to use the clear measuring lids from liquid detergent to mix up the 10ml samples. After putting a few drops on a coffee filter I sopped up the rest with several yards of yarn and dumped it into a ziplock freezer bag. I steamed the bags in the roaster oven using empty tuna cans to keep the rack above the water level. I need to turn it up to about 450 to keep it steaming nicely. I worked on the three sets separately because I wanted to let the paper dry to help me decide in which direction I needed to go.

After letting the bags cool overnight I wrote out Tyvek labels with the dye formula and then slit the bags - they tend to look like they've been shrink-wrapped - and immediately slipped them through the hole in the label before washing.

What I like about this method is that the uneven dyeing of the yarn gives me an idea of what DOS I want to use.

Where the yarn sat in a puddle of dye gives a good prediction of a 3% DOS while the lighter shades would be accomplished with .5%DOS.

I always need to slip in a little green!

Who would have thought that I am getting the best color representation when I take pictures in my basement? I think it's the combination of the cheap flourescent shop light hanging to the side of the table, an incandescent tree lamp to the other side and non-direct natural light coming through the patio door. The colors, at least on my monitor, are spot on. Now I think I need to work on some golds to spark it up a bit.


  1. carol2:11 AM

    Nice! Maybe you will spur me on to dye *my* two blanks from MKTDF.
    Like you, I use my blog to record my progress - or lack of it - and I don't think I dare look see when I last dyed......

  2. Dye must be in the air...I just finished a dye workshop with Sara Lamb this weekend!

  3. Whew! You're back in the saddle, again. The bright blue is spectacular.

  4. Truly it is the air! I've just put out an invite for people to come over and dye with me. I love to dye but I don't like doing it by myself. I like to talk too much. :)

  5. Great dyeing! I like the idea of the baggies and different DOS being predictable by places where pooling happens. And the Tyvec is a brilliant idea. What do you use to mark on them with?

  6. Lovely colors. The green is fabulous. Now I want to dye something to liven up the dreary winter day.

  7. Fun! Wonder if it's a combination of the yellow of the incandescents and the blue of the fluorescents and something red in the natural light that sort of cancel each other out? But bizarre that your basement would be so Ott-lite-esque.

  8. Definitely cool! And I concur with the idea of gold :). I bought a roll of surveyor's tape for labels, it works too, and comes in wild colors.