Friday, June 28, 2013

Exhausted! (Almost)

The sun shone. The dye dyed. Solar dyeing works! But, as with any of the wild non-standard dye methods (see snow dyeing), Forrest Gump tends to get involved: you never know what you're going to get.  Here's what came out of the jars after a day in the sun:

 On the left, the wool DK dyed with the blues. On the right, the angora/wool fingering sprinkled with red and blue dyes. But take a moment to check out the liquid left in the jars. That's exhaustion, folks. As in all the blue dye was taken up in the yarn, leaving none behind in the water. Curiously, the blue in the red-and-blue jar did exhaust, but the red did not. Hmmmm. Was the difference in the dye? In the fiber? We'll never know. But what we do know is that setting a jar of yarn and color out in the summer sun makes the yarn turn amazing colors! Fantastic!

The skeins above were still wet from their experience. After a few hours drying in the shade, you can see for sure what colors you ended up with.  Let's go hang them up on some moose antlers and see what we've got:

For sure what I got was not quite what I intended. The blue is pretty much all blended in one hue, but has darker and lighter areas according to contact with the dye powder for a kettle dyed look that I quite like. The red-and-blue skein all blended to a fairly even shade of purple. Not my favorite shade, but I can live with it. Let's take a closer look:

See, there are little teeny pinky areas around the ties in the purple skein, and I'm glad they're not a major feature, because I'm not too crazy about that shade of pink. It does provide inspiration for another dye session--causing resist areas by tying the yarn in more places. And here's another curious thing: the red apparently seeped under the ties, while the blue did not. Ahhh, the mysteries of the dyepot!

All in all, this was great fun and I'll maybe try it again before the sun goes away for its winter vacation. It's a great bookend for the Alaska dye experience, dyeing with sun and snow. Now, what to knit with this lovely stuff???

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