Monday, July 26, 2010

Project red dye . . .

My friend, Susie Gibbs, at Juniper Moon Farm, recently blogged about a subject close to her heart, Orphan Foundation of America’s Red Scarf Project.  She also offered a great deal if you wanted to purchase red yarn from her . . . but I had other ideas. 

Since I'm a relatively new spinner (just several months old), I have recently been pretty obsessed with spinning.  It's as though I just can't quite get enough of it.  I L.O.V.E. spinning.  I had spun some beautiful merino wool/mohair blend I purchased from Apple Leef Farm; I also had a big spool of mohair and another big spool of merino wool.  So I four-plied two plies of the merino wool/mohair blend that I handspun, and one ply each from the spool of mohair and the spool of merino wool. 

You would expect red dye to "take" equally on all different plies . . . right?  I mean, come on . . . we're talking about mohair and merino wool, right?  Wrong.  The red absorbed differently on the strands.  When I removed it from the dye pot and was hanging to dry (which I failed to get a picture of since it was pitch dark by then) I was pretty sure it was a goner . . . a lost cause . . . a failed attempt . . . the end. 

Never wanting to admit failure, I put it on the spool winder and wound balls (three to be exact, 270 yards total).  I scrounged for my size 11 needles, rifled through patterns on Ravelry, and began knitting.  I tried to find a pattern that would maybe not hide the imperfections in the dye job, but minimize them.  I had noticed this pattern earlier, and finally decided on My So Called Scarf (disclaimer clause:  this is a copyrighted pattern which is available free on Ravelry; however, you can't use the pattern for profit).  

Wow!!!  I'm so glad I didn't scrap this yarn.  I took a picture of the wound yarn and the beginning of the scarf.  I hope it shows the variations in the coloring well enough for you to see how beautiful this thing is turning out. 

The picture looks a little dark, but in fact, the red is dark . . . very dark.  But I also think you can see what looks like faded spots in the spools and in the scarf on the needles.  And that's exactly what it looks like:  faded red.  It's absolutely beautiful. 

I'll be taking this for show and tell Wednesday at my Texas Twisters weekly spin-in, so I hope you'll be there to see it!  It's great.

And read my next post for another crazy outcome with this dye . . .

Great fun!!

BTW, Susie also is offering a very generous giveaway if you want to participate in this project!  And you have until December 15th.  I might have to make several scarves so I get into the drawing several times.  Her yarns are TO DIE FOR!!!

1 comment:

  1. I've seen it in person, and it does look good enough to eat. My jaw dropped, it was striking. Love it!