My New Hobby

As if I needed ANOTHER hobby.  I don’t have enough time for my existing hobbies as it is.  However, over the weekend I decided to have a go at dyeing my own yarn.  I really love the look of the speckled yarn that is the rage at the moment, but it’s so specialised, it’s very expensive.

I’m using cheap superwash merino to practice on, and it seems to be holding the colour very well.  I’m also just using food dye (although I did buy a packed of black dye powder today for my next attempt) and vinegar, as a cheaper option for now.

I began with tying the yarn into a skein (they came as balls), and soaking it in a mixture of luke warm water and vinegar (a couple of ‘glugs’, I didn’t measure the exact amount).

I then put the tray onto the stove and heated the yarn and water/vinegar mix to simmer point.  Taking the tray back to the sink I went about dotting the colours onto the yarn.  Some of the colour mixed with the water, and some of the colour landed on yarn that was sticking out of the water and concentrated there as speckles.  I used a toothbrush to get the smaller speckles, with a mixed result.

After I was happy with the colour placement I left the yarn/dye/water/vinegar to cool back to room temperature, before rinsing in the sink with another vinegar mix, and finally a bit of hair conditioner to keep the yarn soft and get rid of the vinegar smell.

It took two days to completely dry on my clothes rack, and I plan to re-ball the yarn tonight ready for use.

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Too Many Projects, Not Enough Time

Wow, this last month has been a hectic one!  Between work, uni, a funeral and a trip to the mainland I haven’t had time to scratch myself! Oh and I managed to get a really bad case of the flu and asthma which knocked me down for over two and a half weeks.

Things are slowly getting back on track again now so I thought I’d share some pics of the knitting and crochet I’ve done this month.  The cedar leaf shawlette I’m knitting for my work mate is progressing nicely, with about half the leaf pattern to go before it’s ready to block.  It’s currently sitting on a chair behind me at work, so I can knit during my lunch hour.

I started a knitted shawl for myself while I was on my mainland trip, following the ‘Waiting for Rain’ Pattern by Sylvia Bo Bilvia.  I’m using Madeleine Tosh Merino, and it’s a joy to knit.  Unfortunately it’s on the back burner now as I have a few other more pressing projects to complete.

I got my crojo back over the weekend and powered ahead with the blocks for Frida’s Flowers CAL.  I’m suddenly really enjoying crochet again and these blocks are great to work up.  Week 3’s block has about a billion ends to weave in though, which I most certainly did NOT enjoy.  Great result though – I think it may be my show entry for this year.

I’ve also put my Persian Tiles afghan on the back burner for a while.  It seems I need more hours in the day for crafting 😦