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The Dye Project .. again!

my updates on the yarn I (finally) dyed.

1) Soaked the alpaca for 2.5-3hrs in vinegar to mordant
2) after letting it semi-dry, put it into cochineal dyebath:

3) after around 3 hrs, i moved into a steel vessel and put it top heat on gas (no micro here)

4) I let it cool in the vessel itself. and once cooled, washed it with running water and hung to dry:

5) So when it dried it looked like this:

6) and finally got it ready to store, to be used for some future project

What I learnt:

* It’s great fun!!!
* It is work.. do not take shortcuts, the results will also be a shortcut.
* if you use expired/really old dye, dont expect the original color to show up. be prepared for surprises
* Learn to live with the surprise πŸ˜‰ (I’m NOT a pink person)

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Crossroads Hat

This was a lovely quick project! I started a couple of days back, and here I’m DONE! πŸ˜€

This pattern has been designed by Elena Nodel, and was contributed to the Project-a-Month group on Ravelry.The hat is made with 2 colors, and is a great beginner project for using different colors as well as cables. Made with DK weight yarn, it definitely knits up fast! Of course, I didn’t really buy DK weight yarn, I just went ahead and used 2 colors of fingering weight held double. What a wonderful way of emptying my stash! πŸ˜‰

It actually is paired with a cowl, which would help my chances of winning an exclusive dyed merino Skien from Elena, but I’ll have to forego that. I really don’t have the need for a cowl in sunny Bangalore! πŸ™‚

Here are the pics of this lovely knit!

close up of the cabled strands
close up of the cabled strands
the overall look!
the overall look!

 

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The Nosty Project

A few days back I stumbled upon a page (literally, from stumbleupon.com) which was a tutorial on how to use a nosty, or nostepinde. This handwinding tool is used to wind wool from skeins into fancy balls, without the used of bulky yarnwinding machines. The concept was very nice. But where one earth would I find a nosty here in Bangalore? I left the idea at the back of my mind, just in case I came across a nosty in a shop here, and wanted to buy.

A couple of days back i came across another article where an enterprising young lady (not sure who though) used her lotion bottle as a nosty. Very nice idea, I thought! and promptly pulled out my own lotion bottle and got winding. The result of that exercise would probably give competition to a bird’s nest. πŸ™

The Bird's Nest Yarn
The Bird’s Nest Yarn

Last night, however, I was struck by the idea of using my deo bottle. The idea was that I probably got the type of container wrong. While it may have worked for the other lady, the fear that I may squeeze the bottle too hard while winding, and thereby spray lotion all over myself and the yarn prompted me to hold the yarn a little too loose. With the metal container I was now planning, I would get a better control on the yarn, and be able to wind it firmly.

The idea turned out to be inspired! I now have lovely looking yarn balls, with a lot less effort!!!

The process is this:

  • Take a deo bottle, preferably one with a lid to hold the yarn.
What you need!
What you need!
  • Wind the end of the yarn to the top, and place lid over it to hold the yarn. This allows you to have a center-pull ball of yarn.
Wind a bit to the nozzle
Wind a bit to the nozzle
  • Wind the yarn neatly around the bottle up to the width required. I normally keep it to 2 inches.
Wind neatly for a couple of Inches
Wind neatly for a couple of Inches
  • Now start winding the yarn at an angle, from the right top of the base threads to the bottom left of the base threads.Β  After a few times, change direction to right bottom to left top.
start winding at an angle
start winding at an angle
  • Be sure to wind firmly, but not tightly. Tight will only ensure your yarns stretches, and that’s never good!
  • Once done, remove the lid, and unwind the inside end from the top. Gently slide off the bottle.
Lovely balls of yarn!
Lovely balls of yarn!

And viola, you have a lovely ball of yarn! This method takes a bit of practise, but not that much.. you’d get the hang of it after the first ball itself!