Dyeing some yarn

A year ago a friend who also owns a small fibre business asked me to dye her some Autumn-inspired rainbow yarn for her to knit with for her own client. I was happy to oblige, and very pleased with the end results. This is the picture of the leg warmers she made. Her name is The Crimson Rabbit on Ravelry and here is her profile.

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Now, repeating a colourway when you have no written data on how you accomplished it the first time can be a bit tricky, but not impossible. If you’re used to the same dyes you sort of develop an eye to recognise them, and this is more or less what happened in this instance.

You can see the yarn starts out a very light yellow and progresses to a slightly more orange-toned one. I mixed some dyes up, eyeballing the colours and dipping a corner of kitchen roll tissue in the liquid to determine when I was happy with the mixture. I did the same for each colour. I was lucky I recognised the yellow-brown dye at the end or I’d be in a lot of trouble to reproduce that particular one.

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This is what the skeins look after they’d been steam-set and dry. I think it looks quite similar from the original one, don’t you? Winding these two skeins back to functioning yarn took me (I kid you not) around two hours. I had divided and tied up each section previously by weight, and boy it’s a lot more work to put it all back together…

Now, since I know my post is a little late (sorry about that) and a bit on the thin side, allow me to share a couple of images of the park near me when the cold arrived. Our friends over in North America will no doubt think this type of cold is cute, but I sure felt it in my bones…

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Finally, another exciting commission: a raven! I was asked to make this and it had to specifically be a raven, not a crow. Not sure exactly how to tell the difference between the two, I did some internet research and, a few documentaries and image searches later, I think I’m a bona fide corvid geek now…

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What exciting stuff have you been up to in the fibre world? Share away, I’d love to hear it.

 

About Leonor

Textile artist, indie dyer, conjurer of fluff.
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9 Responses to Dyeing some yarn

  1. I’m surprised you didn’t write down your formula. But you did a great job of recreating it. Cold? We had windchills of -50 F this past week now we have a 75 degree change and will be in the 50s today then back to cold later this week. We had about 10” of snow which is now melting. It’s like we’re living in winter roller coaster here.

  2. annielynrosie says:

    Love the raven’s tootsies – will we get to see the whole thing?
    Your dyeing is beautiful – the colour variation is great – and the leg warmers look fab.

  3. ruthlane says:

    Love the spectrum of colors you achieved and good on you for being able to reproduce it. I never keep track ever. So what is the difference between ravens and crows? Inquiring minds want to know 🙂

  4. Antje says:

    How clever of you to manage the colour recreation.
    I looked at the leg warmers and wondered at the so precise banding. Now I know they were individually coloured yarns and before the dyeing process each being weighed out into hanks! A lot of work.
    I sympathise with our British weather, we don’t have it long enough to really adjust to it and the dampness just goes straight through to the core.

    • Leonor says:

      Thanks! It helps that I dye yarn as a business 🙂
      It is a lot of work to do self-striping, particularly when the colours aren’t supposed to repeat! It was fun though.
      Yes, it’s the dampness and the wind, isn’t it? Chills us right to the bone. I feel sorry for our North American friends, -40ºC can’t be fun, damp or no damp!

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