Sunday, 24 August 2008

fiddling about with colour, but....

.....somehow it doesn't work! I am still working on the yarn for the baby sleeping bag... I wanted bright colours, so I painted the finished skeins with blue, red, green and yellow... but when I wound and knitted the first skein - it just looked blotchy and overbright (a bit like a parrot, but not as nice). after thinking about it for a day - I decided to overdye it with some Gaywool blue (called musk). I put a small piece of yarn into a very small amount (I still had some dissolved dye liquid on hand) - but of course even a tsp full diluted resulted in a very dark yarn. but I liked the colours that formed, purple, green, blue and some dark teal. so I took the rest of my liquid, added a tablespoon more of the dye and put in my skeins - garnet colours are the result! I love those colours - I am just not sure that they are a good choice for a baby garment! and I have over 500 g - so I'd have enough maybe for a nice moebius wrap or similar. well, I am still not sure; I did knit a small sample - and I started to spin some more of the same yarn! I might keep the woolly white it came in - before I end up doing more colours I don't think fit the project:)

I am also still spinning the small dye samples I did for the OLG workshop in june. the "ball" in the middle doesn't belong, it's schappe silk with wool, a small sample bag I found when sorting through my stash for the workshop. it gives a slightly lumpy yarn as the wool and the silk are very different in length and don't spin evenly. the three balls (white, blue and pink, upper row) are viscose, very shiny. I'll probably add them as a binder to a less lustrous yarn at some stage. the light rosy and blue below are ingeo, corn fibre, which doesn't take either natural dyes or acid dyes well. the stronger red to the left, the white cone and the bigger ball in blue on the left side are ramie, which was easy to dye with both pigments. the greyish purple in the middle is soy silk - dyed with cochenille and some added iron. and the blue cone on the right is bamboo - which does not only feel very similar to the ramie, but takes up dyes in a similar strength, too. which makes me wonder why people don't buy more ramie and go for the more expensive bamboo instead? maybe it's because ramie has been around for a while - and bamboo is still the "new broom" for handspinners?
the weather is still very changeable - very windy and some showers today - but it's going to become warmer every day, which makes it very murky and sticky indeed! but - the forecast gave some hope for the end of the week! of course, by then the holidays are over, which would be totally typical - miserable weather for 9 or 10 weeks in a row - and a nice september, when the kids are back in school:( I have been reading some thrillers from an Icelandic author, Arnaldur Idratson (not spelled properly, I know) - which fits perfectly! not only is the leading detective a bit of a gloomy, not very happy character - the weather in "tainted blood" is just as miserable as it is over here! I do like the style though - thanks to Kristin I pre-ordered all his books in the library. unfortunately she has mentioned a few other books in her blog - and most of them have been available via the local library too, so I have quite a few books still to read on the shelf:) the trouble is that I really have to pull myself away once I start reading - I tend to get stuck to the book, unwilling to put it aside until it is finished! I was told that this illness isn't curable - and I have been suffering from this ever since I joined the library for the first time - I think I was maybe 7 or 8 at that time! I still remember the groans of my mother, when I came home with a huge bag full of books, barely able to carry it up the stairs! or the day when I had visited the library in the town, where I went to school, went on the bus for the ride home (took me more than an hour!), fell asleep in the heat of summer and only woke up again one stop after my usual one! the problem: my bag full of books was too heavy to just walk back - I had to wait nearly one hour until the same bus came back again! the face of the bus driver upon seeing me again was - well, le'ts say, he looked more than just surprised:) and I got a nice earful to boot, because I came home so late! but whatever it takes to get my hand on good books - I'm prepared to do it!
oh yes, Francine asked about the books from holland! they came from holland, because Rachel from the olg had some 2nd hand books for sale. I bought:
Folk Bags by Vicki Square (interweave)
Time to Weave by Jane Patrick (interweave)
Traditional Japanese Crest Designs (dover)
and Traditional Japanese Stencil Designs (dover)
as I said I very much like some bag designs from Folk Bags! the weaving book is one for people without special looms, simple projects, not all with traditional weaving yarns either. both books from dover show black and white designs, useful for painting, quilting, embroidery etc. most of the stencil designs are fairly elaborate, but the crest designs are simple to work with - I definitely will use some for a quilt I haven't finished yet.
but now - back to the sleeping bag yarn. I better finish something soon - it's been driving me nuts for weeks now!:(


Anonymous said...

Hallo Bettina,
die Garne sehen sehr schön aus und sehr glänzend. Meine sind nicht so glänzend (naturfarben). Kommt das durch das Färben? Ich versuche derzeit mein Ramie zu verstricken und es klappt gar nicht richtig - schief und es wird irgendwie löcherig. Dabei hab ich es mehrmals durchs Spinnrad laufen lassen (den Zwirn). Gruß Juliana

Helen said...

Hi Bettina I think the dark blue dye pulled together your aprrot colours very well. Iloved all your cones of different fibres -very interesting. I am intrigued that Ramie does so well.
The weather here is very poor so in between making felt mittens I am reading my stash from the library and really enjoying a detective series set in Rome, so today I have been dyeing felting and reading-what bliss! How have you got on with your freeze dyeing?

Buecher-undWollkistchen said...

Hallo Bettina,
die Garne sind doch wirklich wunderschön geworden. Ich kann da immer nur ganz neidisch schauen, ich kriege das einfach nicht so hin. Aber: ich arbeite daran.
Deine Spinnproben finde ich sehr interessant, mein Spinnrad wird gerade nur sehr selten benutzt. Und die Geschichten mit den Büchern kommen mir auch sehr bekannt vor, auch die mit dem Zuweit-Fahren im Bus ;-)
Ich wünsch Dir einen schönen Tag und schick Dir liebe Grüße

Willington Weaver said...

Hi Bettina
the new bluer colour is lovely and would make a lovely baby blanket.

My daughter picked a very bright yarn, very like your "parrot" colours, for a blanket she wanted me to knit for her baby. So don't be put off by bright colours for babies.


Woolly Bits said...

Helen, my freeze-dyeing didn't go very far yet. we started renovating the kitchen and I had to leave everything for a while now! I mordanted some white cotton to wrap up with frozen crunched berries - but then there was no time left:( never mind, at least they keep for a while where they are! I am in the process of collecting more rhamnus berries - the trees are full of them, but they only ripen bit by bit! I'll use some for "normal" dyeing in the hope for more grassy green! and some will be used in Flint-style:)

Alison, I was really thinking about using the "parrot" colours - but I didn't like the yarn knitted up, it was just too fussy and I figured it might swamp the baby. it's not going to be a blanket, but a jacket with a "foot bag" on it - a lot of strong colours for such a small face looking out of it:)