I am still busy with dyeing - which has been much easier the last few days because we have brilliant sunshine and temperatures of over 20 deg. C during the day - late summer or what? but it means that I can hang the dripping tops outside without leaving colourful drips on my tiles inside. also the drying is much faster of course. above the results of dyeing twice with "tibetan" madder (not sure if it is really tibetan - or just normal madder, from india though). I used alum as a mordant and no after-treatments. the two balls on the left side are nz lamb top, below the 1. bath, above the 2nd. on the right side the brownish top had been dyed with a beige before and with madder in the 1st bath. half hidden above a ball of silk top, dyed in the 2nd bath; the barely dyed stuff is viscose top and the ball above silk again - but from the 1st dyebath.
the funny thing is that normally madder shouldn't be boiled, so I only barely simmered the first time. it's not a red, more a dark salmon that fixed on the fibres. the second time round I boiled quite vigorously and the colour became much stronger, but not really a rusty shade. hm, maybe it's "tibetan madder" after all? I am not sure whether or not to do a 3rd bath - I don't really use those colours for myself, would fancy a more blueish red from brazilwood myself.
on the other hand maybe I should leave those dried dyestuffs alone for the moment - I had a look outside and there are many more ripe alderbuckthorn berries ready for picking! sometimes I think it would be far better if I didn't have to spin all the dyed fibres as well - and could just buy in more and more fibres for dyeing:))
I am also still busy working on my embroidered miniature - which takes an aweful lot longer than I had anticipated:(( I am in doubt whether I'll manage to finish in time. it's not only the black pattern - I have to fill all the background with the multicolour yarn as well! slow progress... and I can't do it longer than maybe 90 minutes without a break; despite the daylight lamp I use it does strain the eyes! I couldn't resist doing a little bit of the multicolour yarn though - and once the black pattern is finished, at least the counting of stitches will stop. should I do another pattern like this - I'd skip the counting and would draw the basic pattern onto the silk gauze and just fill in the outlines! lesson learned:))
I am also waiting for two orders - one is from the US, a few berocco patterns and the swirl shawl from jojoland, which a kind soul, a fellow knitter in germany, ordered for me - and the other a huge box full of fibres from germany! I couldn't resist the baby alpaca and silk bricks etc. - and also ordered 1 kg of Akita (dog) fibres... looking forward to spinning this - though I wonder how our three dogs will react, when they take a sniff? I think I am well prepared for those autumn and winter days, when there's no chance of going out! weird thought - with the sun blazing outside just now....