Several months ago, my friend Barb and I attended a dyeing workshop offered by a local spinner. We had fun. Just prior to our workshop, our friend Irene also attended a dye workshop held by the same local spinner. She also had fun.
In fact, we had so much fun that we decided that we should try to recreate the fun. We ordered Jacquard Acid Dyes and Bare yarns from Knitpicks. Barb has a wonderfully large basement with sturdy linoleum floors. It was agreed that we would meet there and begin our adventures.
This is a photo of Irene and I painting our yarns. Irene and her sister, Kathy, were painting wool to make a sweater. Me? I'm just painting sock yarn.
Barb decided to attempt some immersion dyeing with lace-weight wool. She is trying to explain to us how it will work.
Here you see Barb pulling some of the laceweight out of the dye bath and letting it run into the rinse water. The theory was that the wool in the dye bath would continue absorbing dye, making it darker and darker.
The theory is good. Unfortunately, it probably should not have been attempted with lace-weight. 880 meters is a lot to be pulling from the dyebath at 5-15 meters at a time. The truly frightening part of the endeavor was that the wool in the rinse water was just pooling there, waiting to be rewound. We kept teasing Barb that we were going to stir the rinsewater. Her shrieks were quite amazing.
We were quite thrilled with the results. The colours were vivid and rich. Even before the heat setting process. And after? Even better. We are all waiting (im)patiently for the yarns to dry so that we can wind them into balls and show them off.
And what was Doug up to while I was out having fun? He spent the day on his hands and knees, spreading out the heating element for the new bathroom.
To say that I am thrilled with the progress being made would be an understatement--possibly the biggest understatement of 2007. Stay tuned for more updates on the yarns and the bathroom!