I want to make the Whippoorwill Wrap-Shawl for me, and it took me ages to find some colours. Finally I decided to go for some grey and pink. The pattern asks for some really nice but expensive sock-yarn or fingering weightish yarn, but they are all so dead expensive, so I had to dye my own. I ordered some organic merino 2-ply sport yarn (they happened to be out of the 4-ply I think) from Yarnundyed, it feels so lovely soft. I wanted to get one gradient from grey to pink into the wool and also get semisolid colours to make the shawl a bit happier. To get one gradient I could not dye the skeins as they were, I wanted one end grey and then pink and the end grey again. So I wrapped 2 undyed skeins of each 100g/375m over my elbow into 6 skeins each. I presoaked them in warm water, squeezed out excess water and then layered them into my pyrex dish. The grey skeins to the left side, then a few pink skeins to the right side, and the last two skeins to be grey again back to the left side. I had quite dilute dyes in squeeze bottles, soaked the wool with grey and pink, splashed a bit pink into the grey, squeezed them all with my fingers to make sure that the dye is fairly good distributed and all the way to the bottom of the dish. Then i covered it with aluminium foil, popped the dish into the oven and baked it for about 40mins. After I had taken it out I left it to cool, the colour has been completely absorbed by the wool, i gave it a rinse and hung the skeins up to dry.
I love how they came out:
skeins of pink-and grey oven dyed wool
and wound into balls
handspun handdyed green plums
Thsi time I was quite fast spinning up the BFL that I had dyed with Acid dyes previously. I do tent to get my default yarn, which is about worsted weight, perfect for another Thorpe hat for my flute teacher. it is nice and bouncy, I’m happy with the outcome. I still cannot spin the singles even enough. It looks ok, but I do for exaple split the roving in exactly two parts and i start from the same ends, but I still don’t get the different coloured spaces together. I’ll have to practice more.
I oven-dyed some BFL roving with Acid Dyes – my first try with Acid Dyes 🙂
I mixed red from yellow and magenta, purple from magenta and midblue, and green from yellow and turquoise. The green turned into yellow unfortunately because the turquoise washed off completely. I Put the presoaked roving into the glass dish, mixed the colours first in a smaller volume of water containing mordant and then diluted it some more in water with mordant. I’m using Kenanthrol Acid Milling dye and Ammonium Sulfate as mordant (3g/L). Then in the oven, covered with tinfoil, 30 mins @ 180°C, i could see it boiling in the oven. After taking it out I left it to cool, then rinsed it in warm water (that was when nearly all the green came washed out, altho all the other colours were nicely fixed, the turquoise seemed to have issues).
I’m very happy with the results, apart from the nearly totally disappeared green. I’d love to use it for another Thorpe hat as a Christmas present for my flute teacher, so I better get going 🙂
The dyed roving coming out of the oven
dried and rolled up
Oh i treated myself! I went to a spinning on the wheel-course last weekend and i soooo loved it! i am absolutely hooked! I’ve been dropspindling for the last few months, i do like it as well, but spinning on a wheel is just a huge difference. I knew i had to get one. So here I am, proud owner of my first spinning wheel, an Ashford Kiwi! And Oh, I am soooooo excited!
But good things have to wait. I have learned that it is best to finish the wood or the spinning wheel. There are quite a few options for how to finish the wood: wax, all different kinds of oils, wood stains, lacquers and varnishes. It was a difficult decision. i found a link with lots of info how people finished their Asford wheels which helped me a little. Also I’ve seen some beautifully painted ones, lots of beautiful ones in the Ravelry Kiwi group, but i’m still too much of a WHUSS to do that. So i decided to go for a plain natural Danish Oil finish and maybe top it with a layer of wax for a little bit of shine. From a homeware shop i got the Danish oil, turps, sandpaper, steel wool and a brush for 20 quid. Some old newspaper and ready i was!
The wheel was there when i got home from work on Thursday. I sanded the parts a little bit, just to take of sharp edges, wiped them with a cloth with a little bit of turps and when they were dry i put on the first coat of oil. I let it for about 15-20 minutes and then wiped off any excess oil with a soft cloth before it got sticky. I was slightly worried that since the wheel is not pure wood but MDF it might take a slightly different colour. But internet said it is ok to oil MDF so i put a coat onto that too. The result is slightly nauseating because now the wheel has some ugly dark yellowish colour and looks worse than before – i’ll have to paint it sometime cause i can’t stand the ugly yellow, but not for now, now i can’t wait to get spinning. Also the centre beam seems to be slightly different, the wood is much redder than all the other parts. Oh well. Friday morning i sanded the pieces again with a very fine 600 paper and added a second coat of Danish Oil, let it sit, wiped it off. Friday evening i polished all the parts with some fine steel wool and then i rubbed in a nice layer of Antiquax to get it a bit shiny and assembled it – finally! The instructions were a bit IKEA like (a word or two sometimes would not have done any harm at all), but i managed. And here we go: