Monday, July 17, 2006

Dyed we did

The carnage
We actually made not too big of a mess.
Our fingernails are still black.

The Holy object.
No way we would have made it through dyeing 2 lbs of fiber & a carding session without this little $5 at a garage sale beauty.

Fiber. Dyeing is exhausting. Whatever you pay for dyed fiber is a deal. We made a bunch of rookie mistakes:
burning the crap out of ourselves on pot lids & steam
using waay too many colors at once - one of mine had 7-8 to start & came out , Surprise!, muddy

felting roving due to rinsing in haste, yes - it was me! Carla saved hers by carding it again. Did I mention the woman is a genius?

Fiber basking on bamboo floor.

So you pros out there, we bow down to you.
How do you rinse your dyed fiber? I'm envisioning the thing I called a Bather - sort of like a photography print washer (think long, shallow, stainless sink with contantly running water).
How the hell is your roving still fluffy after dyeing? Do you re-card (re-rove?)

Tomorrow - who's your friend when things get rough? And carding.


Anonymous pippi said...

it's been so hot, i can't fathom dyeing.

waiting until the fiber is completley cool is KEY.
what i do to rinse is i throw it in the washer. not as scary as it sounds. i fill up the washer with some hot water and synthropol, then tun the washer off,let it soak, then turn it on the cycle between rinse and spin, where the water is drained out.... you have to be careful, too much water could mean disaster, if you let it complete the spin cycle.

another method that i use ... i fill one of those coolers that have the drain plug in them at the bottom to drain out melty water from your chilling beers... it works really well for drainging the rinse water out of fibers with the least amount of handiling.

7:46 PM  
Anonymous Susie said...

Playtex gloves are a big help in avoiding the black fingernails thing (ask me how I know...) They also ward off burns from steam and you can actually pluck hot yarn or fiber out of its bath if you're quick.

I find that once the fiber is cooled, spun out in the washer and hanging draped across my stall shower (my handiest inside place for drying without getting anything else damp) I tend to fiddle with the roving, gently opening it back up. Certain types of fiber will get rope-like during the dyeing, but in doing this a little bit at a time, by the time it's completely dry, it'll be fluffy and full again.

Don't ever do this with superwash'll shred it. Just let it dry. It gets fluffy all by itself.

You made very favorite. Nice work!

12:23 AM  
Anonymous terri said...

1. Never let the wool get hot enough to bubble. Forget that the packags says to boil - don't take wool above 190 degrees.

2. Let it cool completely before you rinse.

1:55 PM  
Blogger CJ said...

I can still taste that wonderous vanilla concoction ... mmmmmmmm. We were very lucky that the clouds were out so no direct sun on us - but we sweat plenty.

Most of all, it was fun! A good time, a learning experience, touching fiber all day with a good friend. Heaven.

2:37 PM  

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