Sunday, January 28, 2018

Knit Up and Dye Episode 55 - Blame it on someone

Show off my progress on current projects, discuss allowing failure in your dye process, show off Let's Get Bubbly kits. Currently seeking test knitters for Madly Addicted Two Ewe.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Colorway Chronicles: Finch

Whilst "grellow" is all the rage, it is a real challenge for me. I've tried to get this out of my dye pots on several occasions with mixed results.

My first attempt at a grellow, which is grey and yellow smooshed together into a color name all its own, came out a decidedly ill green. Why? Well, the answer is simple really. Grey isn't grey.

Many dyes are composites - colors made up of other colors. Blacks are famous for this and if you look closely you can rather easily tell if you are looking at a red-black or a blue-black. Manufacturers do offer "true black" and most recently "true silver" but they aren't always easy to find or get. My particular silver/grey dye is a blue-grey. And, if I'm not careful in how I apply it to the yarn in conjunction with yellow, it mixes and I get a green. A sickly, unattractive green. A color so bad, I turned away from reattempting this for over a year.

More recent attempts didn't give me the blend I was looking for. I didn't want to have to leave white between the grey and yellow. I wanted them to wash into each other without turning green. I used a variety of methods and did a significant amount of over dyeing in navy.

But now, there is Finch. I finally found the right process and tones to get a grellow I was comfortable with that didn't have any of that ghastly green undertone.

If you work at anything long enough, you'll have success.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Knit Up and Dye Episode 54 - My 45th!

Brief tutorial of my "cross-pot" pour technique, discussion about multiple projects and multiple project bags, works in progress, designs in progress and future projects. Call for test knitters. Contains coupon code.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Colorway Chronicles: Under the Sea

Sometimes improvising a design based on how you're feeling is fun and has wonderful results.

I was preparing to film an episode of my podcast and had a couple specific techniques in mind that I wanted to demonstrate as a double process, but was feeling rather uninspired. Weather had been cold and nasty, not just here, but pretty well across the entire country, and I knew that a winter inspired or themed sock blank was not what people wanted to see. Still, I wanted to use blue because it shows up really well on camera. I thumbed through my collection of stencils, and discovered I have a lot of summer themed stencils and absolutely no winter ones. I found myself fretting a little thinking summer felt inappropriate, but then I realized, a tropical vacation was exactly what I was craving, and likely, so was everyone else. You can find the full demonstration of the creation of this blank in Episode 52: So Much Gratitude.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Knit Up and Dye Episode 53 - Monster Taming

Another Double Demonstration Episode! This time I'm showing you how to use a pom-pom to make embellishments (poms) and I'm showing you another multi-process dyeing technique. General life discussion regarding setting boundaries, knitting discussion in which I show off a project bag, discuss having multiple projects going at once and why, current sweater project, and an exclusive pattern available to patrons and coming up in my shop as a kit!

Friday, January 12, 2018

Colorway Chronicles: She's Waiting For You

This is one of those sock blanks that I'm tempted just to edge and use as a completed piece. I think it would make a lovely wrap just as it is.

"She's Waiting For You" is another double process sock blank, in which I dyed the blank, then airbrushed stenciled designs over the pre-dyed piece. This particular colorway was actually inspired by a favorite movie of mine Steel Magnolias (the original, I haven't seen the remake). I so love the scene in Truvy's where M'Lynn is countering Shelby's description of her wedding colors (Blush & Bashful) with her own colorful description "That sanctuary looks like it's been hosed down with Pepto Bismol!" I'm of the belief my sock blank is more appealing then digestive stomach aid in its blushing and bashful tones. 

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Knit Up and Dye Episode 52 - So Much Gratitude!

Double Demos! In this episode, I demonstrate how to make bobbles and I show a sock blank being dyed using a double process - a ruched resist technique, then air brushed and stenciled. I also show off my completed Coexist sock, some available sock blanks, talk about my patronage program and an upcoming exclusive pattern, as well as a kit that will be offered at a discount for my YouTube subscribers. Winner of the January patron drawing announced.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Colorway Chronicles: Bleeding Aliens!

Here is a perfect example of a happy accident.

This colorway was born of poor multi-tasking. The day I dyed this I was really pushing to accomplish a lot of work and had multiple techniques going on all at the same time in my kitchen. There were two pots on my stove-top working kettle dye yarns, two roasting pans on my counter ready for some regional dyeing and I had my airbrush set up on a table for sock blanks. There were timers ticking, microwaves beeping, steam rising... in short, dyer chaos, and a lot of fun!

I had just mixed up four dyes - three were meant for my roasting pans, and the dark teal you see in the skein photo above to go into a kettle dye for a tonal yarn. I got my dyes confused, grabbed the dark teal and poured it in into the end of the roasting pan directly onto yarn, instead of into the kettle it was meant for. I realized my error at once.

Yes, I gasped. Suddenly there was dark teal all over one end of yarn meant for other colors, and no plans to make anything like this. What to do? Improvise of course! I set the teal in my stove, then picked two other colors and scribbled them onto the remaining white end. I chose a chartreuse and a periwinkle. Again, things didn't go quite as I imagined, and the chartreuse struck brighter and harsher than the more subtle tones I had anticipated. All the colors applied were still within the same color family, just with more contrast than I'd intended.

Washed and dried, I found I LOVED this "mistake" but found myself at a loss for a clever name. I twisted up a skein and ran out to my husband working on his motorcycle in the garage.

"What does this remind you of?" I yelled over the Ramones din from his beat up shop radio.

He's grown used to these bizarre interruptions from me. "Looks like alien blood."

Perfect!  He got a kiss, I got a new colorway in my catalog, and you got "Bleeding Aliens!"