...and best-laid plans (continue to) run amok.
Originally, I was going to knit all one-skein projects with the yarn I dyed for Project Spectrum and I sort of even planned the whole thing out. I knew I wouldn't do it to the end if I boxed myself in too much, though, so beyond some basic guidelines and scribbles on paper, it was all very fluid... playful and fun, yay!
RED: The first month was pretty normal, though I definitely caught the fever because I was throwing all sorts of extra-curricular skeins and hanks into the pot!
GREEN: The second month took a vibrant and much more colorful route -- a woolly and literal interpretation of "playful and fun."
BLUE: The third month was all about experimentation, so much so that the final "project" yarn doesn't even look blue to the untrained eye. Heh. It's blue to me and always will be! (I had a big red stuff dog once, very much like Clifford, and I named him Blue.)
PINK! Pink is... well, pink ain't so easy folks! It can easily be so hot it sears the eye, or a little too Pepto, or too... I dunno, it's just tricky.
Here's my first attempt, using what I thought was a weak solution of red and burgundy. Heehee! It's very happy and definitely not Pepto, though it doesn't always play well with other colors and sometimes makes you want to squint a little (it depends on the light).
The second attempt, using half the strength of the first and with just a DROP of black, is still a pretty strong pink!
The third solution was half again the strength and with a half-drop of chartreuse in the mix. That resulted in a rather soft, pretty, girly pink.
Well, then Stephen West came along with his WestKnits Mystery Shawl KAL. It's been ages since I did a KAL (okay, fine, not counting the Through the Loops Cerasifera shawl I just finished). I've never done a mystery KAL, though, and I found myself completely enchanted... and then thinking about stash yarn possibilities and which color combinations might work and... hey! maybe I could dye yarn to match!
There are a few skeins of fingering-weight yarn from each of the first three batches of pink that were overdyed to sort of "dirty" them up a bit -- some are easier than others to pick out in the photos above -- with varying degrees of success (and also pastel green!). I came close to what I wanted, but no banana... I was short on time (this being a last-minute decision) and it just wasn't working to rush (i.e., NOT FUN!), so I found some yarn in Iowa to use for the mystery shawl (MUCH MORE FUN!) and will do something else with my PS pink yarn.
I may or may not be thinking about my next Stripe Study Shawl.
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Have a great weekend. I'll be making my way to W'loo in order to participate in the Fit City Triathlon (relay) with my sisters on Sunday morning! The event benefits the swim club there. I sure wish it had been a nicer summer up 'til now, I hardly feel as though I've ridden except for events... probably because I've hardly ridden except for events. ; ) Oh well. I'm just thankful that my very competitive Type A sister/teammates are aware of their ages and limitations! Wish us luck!
Deirdre left a comment on yesterday's post:
Excited by what I learned at the dyeing workshop that Kate, Ali and I took at Old Maiden Aunt Yarns in Scotland, I was completely energized by the girls' enthusiasm! Project Spectrum came along at exactly the right time, providing both direction and focus for my ongoing exploration.
At this point, it's mostly all fun and games. I am having a blast playing around and experimenting with color and fiber. That said, I've been trying hard to document and record while playing -- not something I've ever been good at -- because at the heart of it, I'm also learning.
Right now, given my current set-up and equipment, immersion techniques work best. (The lapse in my documentation is evident right >< here in that the most useful photos of my red-dyed yarn are not readily available... and I'm just going to trust that I took them in the first place, and can find them... I'm 99% sure.) All of the reds I dyed in May were dyed using this method; some were over-dyed and/or tie-dyed.
A pot full of dye is hard to resist! I put a rubberband around a skein of white yarn and threw it in to see what would happen...
And put some more rubber bands on a hank of already-red yarn and threw that in, too!
Naturally, since I'm mostly set up for immersion dyeing, I was hand-painting by June!
Mostly, these were done by pour-and-smoosh. My test skeins are small, but I believe I had a couple of these sort of draped in and out of containers each with a different concentration of dye.
For hank above, I laid it out on some large pieces of plastic wrap. I poured and smooshed chartreuse on one end, emerald on the other; orange along one side; navy along the other. It was all wrapped up in plastic wrap and then steamed on the stovetop. The steaming could also be done in a dye-dedicated microwave or crockpot, but I don't have either.
I continued the pour-smoosh-and-steam method for the blue test skeins, playing a bit with value and hue.
I reverted to immersion, time, and over-dye techniques for the "blue" finish skein. I also continued to play with value and hue, resulting in a failure in the "blue" department but pretty much a winner in every other way! For this hank, I threw the whole thing into a bath of burgundy-tinted orange; after a few minutes, I pulled out one end, leaving the rest in the pot. I mixed "a little" black with navy blue (this might have worked better had I used sky blue) and then over-dyed half the hank in this solution.
Because this is all rather seat-of-the-pants and sometimes my idea changes in the time it takes to pick up the yarn and put it in the pot... There was more navy-black dye than required for the amount of fiber, and that's when I threw in a skein of green Galway to soak up the rest.
I can't believe it's going to be August on Monday!!! We'll be in the pink, which I'm sort of dreading, but I'm going to MAKE IT WORK!