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May 2021



Worsted Weight Awesome

I’m sorry for the long delay since my last post – the Blanket Thief and I decided to finally take our honeymoon, which took us through many yarn shops in Europe (we saw some culture too, but, you know…yarn).  I did a relatively good job of not buying too much yarn…but that’s a subject for another post.

Now, when we were last here, I was talking about my latest adventures in dyeing yarn.  We were mid-dye soak, and the yarn looked like a wonderful green spaghetti soup.

This is when the real magic happens.  See, the heat causes the dye to react and bind to the proteins in the fiber, so after some time the water goes clear and all the color is in the yarn.  I yet again risked felting the yarn and turned it over to see the underside and inside of the yarn I had in there – apparently, the pot was too packed, because the yarn that had been on the inside or bottom of the clump didn’t get much dye penetration.

I dunked a bit more dye on to get full coverage, set it to cook some more, and then…

Magic.  Gorgeous, lovely, magic.

As proof that the water really is clear – not slightly green, not tinted clear, but clear – here’s a shot of me pouring off the dye bath.

It really just looks like tap water you could drink.  You probably shouldn’t, though – not that it would kill you, since I was using food dyes and vinegar, but I doubt the vinegar water is very tasty, and there might be something that washed off of the wool or something.  Still, it’s a nifty trick – I can’t wait to do it with small children around so I can explain the science behind it.  After all, I didn’t get that chemistry degree for nothing…

Anyway, after a few quick washes to get the vinegar smell off I hung the yarn up to dry on the shower rod.  By the way, those tiles you see in the background?  I totally did those during my Home Improvement week last year.  It’s probably not a coincidence that the tiles match the yarn.

Once it was dry, the moment of truth had arrived – just how felted was the yarn, anyway?

I won’t say it wasn’t felted at all, because that would be a lie, but at the same time the felting wasn’t that bad.  Actually, most of the felting seems to have been within the yarn strand itself (the plies felting to each other) than between strands.  There was a bit of a fight getting each skein onto the niddy-noddy, but that had as much to do with my lack of ties within the skein and my decision to wind off of a pile instead of having someone hold the yarn than it did with me stirring the yarn while it was dying.

And at the end of all of that?  A little bit of Worsted Weight Awesome.  The Blanket Thief and I both think this color should be called Seafoam, and it’s just gorgeous with all different colors of light green throughout.

I’ve got two skeins – roughly 400 yards.  Any suggestions for what I should make?