Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Shave ‘Em 2 Save ‘Em, Chapter 3: Horned Dorset

My third foray into a new fiber was Horned Dorset. It’s a lovely lofty wool. 

It came as roving, so I jumped right into spinning it. 
Since I had just finished up the Jacob shawlette, and I thought my wardrobe could do with a little color, I thought I’d try some dyeing before I knitted this up.
I had an ancient jar of cochineal dye in my craft cupboard and I threw the yarn I had spun, along with the remaining roving into a couple of pots, just to see what would happen. 

The dye was about two years old, and had become fermented. The smell was awful.

I threw it back into the bath, and then looked into how one neutralizes odor in dyestuffs, and the answer came up vinegar.

Well, when you add vinegar to a solution you’re changing its chemical makeup and that turned my purple yarn into this peachy affair. 
Very cool. 

After it sat around for a couple of months, the wool has settled into this very light pinkish situation. 

So, remember when I said that I dyed the roving and the spun yarn separately? They turned out slightly different in tone, so after I stared at the resulting yarn wondering what to do for a bit, I plied them together to make a 4 ply. 
What seemed like an impassable color difference blended together nicely in the four ply.

Now that my yarn was settled I could get going on the project.
I made a bunch of braided crown hats for my craft fair adventure last fall. 

I adapted that pattern a little for this yarn, and got knitting.

Part of the Shave ‘Em 2 Save ‘Em challenge is to use at least 4 ounces of wool. 
The hat was getting pretty nearly done last night and I had a giant glob of yarn left, so I punted and put a big ass tassel on the back,.

Since I was making this up, I have a couple of additional ideas for the next time I make this hat in a larger gauge. I think I’ll make the braid a little wider, use a longer cable, and maybe go up a needle to make it fluffier. 

Overall I am pleased with the end result, and think this hat will be a cozy addition to our family winter hat basket.

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Saturday, July 4, 2020

Morning Summer Walk

Nature's fireworks were on full display this morning.