Silk Scarves – Part 2

I have been hand dyeing and painting silk scarves for several years now. The exact techniques that I use are hard to describe and will vary depending on how I want to “play with color” on that particular day :). The results range from pastel to very bright, from structured to random.

Then comes the challenge of taking pictures that accurately represent the colors that we see in real life.Dealing with silk, changes in the light will reflect differently, not to mention the differences in peoples monitors. Of the following pictures scarf #17    is a good example, the purple on the bottom part is actually much deeper/brighter and gradually lightens in shade towards the middle  (the name sign is white in all of these pictures.) But even the color of the table is different than the realistic color in the other pictures. Think I need a light box?

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57″ x 10″ priced at $20

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57″ x 10″ priced at $20

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57″ x 10″ priced at $20

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72″ x 9″ priced at $25

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78″ x 9.5″ priced at $25

Now to try to move the picture below into this space…I need a refresher course on picture sizing and placement!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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76″ x 9.5″ priced at $25

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68″ x 14″ priced at $25

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71″ x 14.5″ priced at $25

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68″ x 14″ priced at $25

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58″ x 10.5″ priced at $30

These (and more) will be going to the craft shows with us in the Spring unless they find homes before then. (You can contact me to check on availability)

I’ve ordered more scarves to dye so I’d appreciate your comments, to learn which styles and colors you might prefer to see.

Wishing Everyone a Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year!

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Snow Dyed Silk Scarves

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snow dyeing

Snow dyeing is the process of placing dyes on top of snow with the article to be dyed encased in two layers of snow. As the snow melts the dyes are carried onto the fabric, making beautiful and unique patterns. In the following  I used silk scarves and acid dyes, which I then heat set to ensure color fastness. Care instructions; Hand wash in mild soap and cool water. Iron while still damp using lowest temperature iron setting. Wear and enjoy!

After teaching a workshop in silk painting at a November Fiber Show I had to keep inspiration going, so the snow came just in time to use this different technique when I returned home.

Each of these are different styles of 100% silk, ranging in weight from 8mm (flat crepe and chiffon) to 12mm (crepe de chine  and silk satin) , to the heaviest at 19.5mm ( silk charmeuse.)

 

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58″ x 10.5″ priced at $25

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58″ x 10.5″  priced at $25

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58′ x 9.5′  priced at $25

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58″ x 11″ priced at $30                       

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56″ x 11″ priced at $30 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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64″ x  12.5″ priced at $30                   

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58″ x 11″ priced at $25

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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58″ x 11″ priced at $25                    

The preceding is to answer questions that friends of my daughter had, after seeing her early Christmas present of a flat crepe scarf. If anyone else is interested feel free to contact me. My next planned post will feature my hand dyed/painted inventory of scarves (more pictures to take 🙂 .

 

 

Blog Avoidance?

Don’t know why I haven’t been posting as regularly as I had planned? I don’t have writer’s block as I have many thoughts written down in notes. Maybe it’s the fact that there are only 24 hours in a day and I need a few of those for sleeping?

Craft shows are approaching! I have copies of our schedule printed for handing out to those interested in where we will be. I’ve revised my candle scent listing brochure, adding more scents (that will eventually be discontinued) to my sale column! This also meant relabeling all my inventory boxes and sorting through over 100 scents (does that explain why I am trying to cut back on my variety?)  Plus I’ve been making more candles, printing their labels etc. Hopefully I won’t have to make candles between some of the back-to-back shows.

And I’ve been dyeing!…lots and lots of wool fiber 🙂 Tonight I finally took the time to edit the many pictures I’ve been taking of the finished colors. And I’ve spun a few sample yarns, changing the look of the colors by plying them with different colors.

 

 

And I managed to achieve these each of these two-tone results in the same kettle of dye!

And for a visual hint of how this was done, the following two pictures are of the same roving;

 

And the latest two color-ways;

Most of the above fiber will be available at craft shows for $3.00 per ounce (both the Suffolk roving  and the Merino top is about 8oz per batch/colorway). If you would like to purchase some to spin, contact me and I can list it for you if it’s still here.

Hope everyone will continue to follow and realize, as I have, that I will probably always be a sporadic writer….too many irons in the fire…which reminds me, I need to plug in and do some new wood burning! Til next time, enjoy your lives, and hope you had a Happy Easter.

January’s Fiber

Normally people might read ” January’s fiber” and think I had made drastic changes in my diet! But no! I’m referring to the wool that I’ve been getting ready for this summer’s craft shows.

The biggest part of my time was spent spinning some more super wash yarn. After a sale on HandmadeArtists I realized how low my inventory of super wash was so decided to get busy. I managed to finish spinning five pounds of the merino super wash top from my stash, and dug out another 5 pounds to see if I can do the same amount for February. One pound of larch green was plied with one pound of dark olive for a total of about 1200yds. The red pound is called lipstick (about 550yds). Then a pound of light blue (about 600yds). And pictured the first skein of the pound-a bulkier art yarn of maybe 250yds. The rest of it is finished but drying to set the twist. I still need to label the individual skeins before I will have an accurate yardage count.

hand spun yarn

superwash merino hand spun

Then I took a day off to play with colors. Five batches/ four colorways gave me a start on adding to my top inventory. I will have the fun of spinning some of the top that matches the yarn to knit into a hat. The rest will find homes with other spinners or felters.

hand dyed

dyed merino top and alpaca blend yarn

Then my supervisor (Sheldon the cat) was inspecting the progress of some dryer balls! I think he likes being in charge of quality control!

Dryer balls

Sheldon inspecting!

And I’ve a head start on February’s to do list, just finished the first pound of singles and ready to start plying.

Happy February all.

Snowy Days

Snowy days and days and days, with a little freezing rain thrown in to the south of us!

snowy view

But with the snow comes lots of time to stay inside and craft so I’ve been very busy this past week.

rainbow dyed

merino top and alpaca blend yarn, hand dyed

Last Friday I dyed some wool and top and yarn. While it was drying I finished spinning some green yarn, plied it and set the twist.

dyed in the wool.

warm and cool primary colors, plus pink+blue=purple

When it was dry I spread it on the table for pictures, but first I had to play peek-a-boo with Sheldon! After the game was done he still was tempted to take a closer look at the wool, but behaved and just looked 🙂

cat peek-a-boo

my eyes are closed…you can’t see me

cat peek-a-boo

can I fit?

Sheldon the cat

hi!

Then I teased some of the purplish wool to remove more of the VM (vegetable matter) that hadn’t come out in the washing.

cat

Can’t I help?

hand processing wool

teased wool and debris

After loading my hand cards with fiber, I found that Sheldon was still watching me!

hand wool processing

Dressing the cards

hand processing wool

carding wool with help

hand processing wool

carded wool

Here are some the rolags (rolls of carded wool) ready for spinning, but I have a lot more carding to do first.

hand processing wool

rolags ready to spin

As I mentioned before we have two black cats. The following pictures will show you how we tell them apart: Sheldon has the crooked ear from the injury he came to the shelter with. Stanley has half of a white whisker (the other half must of broken off during their wrestling matches).  While Stanley can usually be found be found on my husband’s lap and occasionally on mine, Sheldon has to see (closeup) whatever I am doing and shares his lap time with me and our son, while only occasionally my husband, maybe because that lap is already taken by his brother. Both take turns trying to help me spin or knit but are learning that yarn is NOT a chew toy.

cat

Sheldon

spinning yarn

Stanley helping me spin

The yarn that Stanley was helping me spin has now been plied and has formed skeins totaling over 500yds. Time to start spinning the next color/pound of superwash merino. Made more dryer balls today, so those are drying now. I’m thankful for the speed by which things dry during the winter months thanks to the even heat of our wood furnace. So winter does have its advantages!

spun yarn

singles of superwash merino

How do you enjoy winter days?  Anyone a fiberholic too?

Time Crunch

As  I warned in an earlier post, craft shows and gardening would be cutting into my blogging time. I hate to admit, I’m not even able to keep up with reading all the wonderful blogs that I’ve marked to follow, but will try to catch up this fall.

Between the last two shows I caught sight of this rainbow in our back yard.

rainbow

back yard rainbow

The rest of the pictures are some of the things I’ve been up to between shows, the latest dyeing hanging on the line.

wool yarn ready to ply

orange and leaf green now plied with the black and ready for the shows to find a new home

dyed wool top

dyed wool top, will be my demo spinning at next show

dyed yarn

thick and thin wool and nylon when dyed gives the most wonderful jewel-tones

hand dyed yarn

close-up of colors in bright sun-shine

Hope everyone is enjoying their summer!

FO’s and New Beginnings!

Four finished hats, the beginning of two new projects, plus the proof that I did manage a little picture editing on my  new tool toy. Thank you for all the encouraging comments on my last post. It’s nice to know I’m not alone in this over-wired world 🙂

The first hat, finally felted, is the one shown unfelted in a post last month. As I was taking the picture, that old song with the lyrics “bend me, shape me” popped into my mind (and is still floating there 🙂 and these are only two of several shapings  I tried. Felted hats can be worn in many different ways.

felted bucket hat

green felted bucket hat

The other finally finished felted hat, is shown unfinished here.

bulky knit hat

hand spun ribbing and thick and thin crown.

The next two hats are from the spun and dyed yarns shown here. Both knit from the same basic Ravelry pattern,  but varying how/where each yarn was used and throwing in some random purl stitches. (Plus with editing I was able to white out half of the background 🙂

another bulky hat

hand spun ribbing with both yarns alternated in the crown.

The new beginnings include a cowl from hand dyed yarn, some more snow dyeing(yellow,orange,and blue), and lots of computer work!  The dyeing is now hanging to dry (a softly shaded pastel), the cowl is finished (I tend to knit a lot when frustrated!), another hat has been started, (no pictures yet) and learning the computer is going to be a long work in progress 🙂

snow dyeing

snow dyeing

cowl started

beginning of cowl

 

 

When Life Gives You Lemons….

“When life gives you lemons, make lemonade” is something we have all heard I think. But I prefer lemon pie!

So when life gave us snow yesterday (about 8 new inches after having almost all bare ground), I decided to try some snow dyeing! I’ve done it at guild meetings on silk and cotton(using cool temp dyes), but decided to try it with my wool dyes on wool yarn and top.

I pre-soaked my wool in warm water with vinegar added, then lifted on a mesh to drain in my colander.

ready to dye

yarn on wool top

Meanwhile I gathered a bucket of snow, then froze my hands carefully packing it around and on top of the wool, to a depth of about 3 inches, then sprinkled a little more snow on top.

I sprinkled powdered dye carefully on top of the snow, using magenta, teal, and yellow.

They looked so pretty as they started to melt into the snow.

snow dyeing 2

dyes beginning to migrate

The science behind snow dyeing is that as the snow melts, the different components of each dye dissolves and spreads at a different rate,remixing and being carried into the material below it. (Of course there is a pan underneath to catch the run-off.)

snow dyeing 3

After the melt and before hot water bath.

The results; The snow (in the house) melted 🙂 The resulting wool didn’t look anything like I had envisioned (I had gotten carried away and sprinkled way too much dye for the amount of wool I was using.) Since this dye is heat set I placed my lump of wool into a pan of hot water and heated it for about an hour. Lifted carefully by my trusty mesh I then put it into two rinse waters.

drying dyed yarn and top

Actual yarn colors are deep red/burgundy, dark purple, and high-lights of blue

Looking at the dyed snow water drippings, I added those to my heating pan and placed more wool top in to heat. I always try to exhaust all of the dye from the water and sometimes get some interesting shades.

the results of dye exhaust

dye exhaust is a soft purple/mauve

Snow dyeing is fun, but I have more predictable results with my rainbow dyeing and kettle dyeing (unless I’m in the mood to play “mad chemist”, then any unexpected color may appear 🙂

Three in 3 Days!

Three knit hats

Three knit hats

One each day for the past three days, I started knitting and completed a hat! No I’m not going to keep up that pace as I have other projects to work on too. But it was a nice challenge to myself and a way to see how the new yarn that I dyed last week would look in a project. I’ll be dyeing some more before too long!

hand dyed thick and thin hat.

Thick and thin yarn plus sock yarn

For Wednesday’s hat I used a pattern found on Ravelry written by Carol Tyler. Instead of using the thick and thin wool by itself, I combined it with some of the leftover (shawl) sock yarn that had been the inspiration for the dyes I had used for this skein of lumpy. It was a quick fun knit on large needles, so to keep the fun going I finished by adding a tassel of sorts!

knit from hand spun

brown hand spun hat

Thursday’s hat was another sample of a pattern that a friend designed to go with my hand spun. The pattern will be given free with the purchase of 100yds. or more my yarn this summer. Plus I wanted to make a hat that wasn’t specifically for a woman. (The brown color is more realistic in the first picture than this one)

knit hat

lumpy, slightly slouchy hat

Today’s hat was another of the skeins I had dyed, using the same pattern as Wednesday’s, but making some modifications to the straight stockinette stitch by throwing in some random purls and using a solid hand spun for a more stable band than the thick and thin gave on the first one.