A little bit of this and, a little bit of that, makes a little bit of me.

Labor of Love


Feel free to ignore my ramblings and simply enjoy another gorgeous wet-felt BFL/cashmere overlaid vest with mohair-lock fringes by Connie Rawson of Shear Fiber, my constant inspiration.

and these yarns.

Be warned, they are very fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants-kind of dyeing…but with peace, love, comfort, and joy.

For those of you who are chomping at the bit for a project to work on, while I swelter through the dog dayz of summer, here’s one for you.

I spent a good part of the day at my dear friend Pam’s merrily dyeing over 1,000 yards of superwash cashmere and merino yarn for my next swirl…my first dyeing superwash yarn.

Each skein of yarn is hand-dyed.

As a result of the hand-painting process, each skein is slightly different even when they laid next to each other on the dye table.

Hand dyeing yarn is an art not an exact science.

So charm is to be found in slightly different skeins and dye jobs.

People who demand perfection in hand-dyed yarn and complain when a colorway is slightly off or different should instead go buy commercial yarn with dye lots. Me, I love spoiling myself with some squishy purewool!!!!!

They turned out just as I planned them! The dyes took up nearly instantly or long before the yarn got to the oven roaster! Not something that happens very often, lol.

Doesn’t all that work make you appreciate our fore mothers even more who HAD to collect all the fuss and mess of walnuts, lichens, mushrooms, rose petals, marigolds…

At least now we get to choose it as a craft.

Since I ran out of playtime, I am contemplating to boil a few handfuls of marigold flowers and maybe some frozen mixed berries to natural-dye more wool for one of the 18 swirls…tomorrow? Or next Friday again at Pam’s, trying a new way to space-dye as Bunny has done here.

If you are in town next Friday, stop by at Pam’s ranch shop from 10 to 2 and join us for a dye-along.  I promise…you’ll have a time of your life 😀

Have you done natural dyes over wool? What did you use? How was the outcome? What are your dream dye you’d love to try?

Happy crafting and keep those creative juices running!

(still doesn’t do texting, MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, DiggIt…)

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Comments on: "Labor of Love" (7)

  1. results= fabulous!. Looks like a wonderful time was had in theprocess. Cant wait to view your progress on this one.

    The concept of dying my own yarn has always seem mind boggling but you make it sound like a wonderful journey!

    • Thanks Lisa. Yes, it’s really a wonderful experience and rewarding to dye your own yarn. And the process is really fun…so long you are open to surprises 😀 Just throw a party out with a few friends and dive right in 😀 I would love your spreadsheet on the swirls comparison. Thanks for sharing your hard work, Lisa.

  2. […] readying ourselves for part two, where the real fun […]

  3. I can’t wait to see what those yarns become! What a lovely blend.

    • Another swirl. I finished dyeing the rest last weekend. Now, I have 3 sweaters and a beaded lace on the testing plate…maybe I will get to work on next swirl at the family retreat in two weeks. We’ll see…

  4. […] by handstitch in friendship, Knit, Life, summer Tags: 52in52-2011, Coat of Many Colors, dyeing, friendship, handpainted, Knit, Meadow Camp, Potluck, Summer, sweater, Swirl, Yarn Stash Finally here! Ready to cast on another swirl. […]

  5. […] in the Dye Studio at Pam’s…I have been quite a busy bee today. My efforts (here and here) at dyeing […]

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