Category Archives: dyeing

Good News/Dyeing, Part One

It’s strangely quiet here tonight. The boys are asleep and for once I don’t have the radio on. A few cars driving by, that’s it. So different from our loud, loud days of late. Giggles from Spinner, his first real baby laughs that are so sweet to hear. A constant stream of facts from Little Man: the habitat of squirrels, black bear food, Venus and Mars…he is a constant fountain of information lately. And then there is this dear child:
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Caught in a moment of quiet here (it lasted about 5 minutes) my dear Knittykid is, well, in that very rough transition stage. Ending up year two, getting ready for year three. It’s huge, and hard, and made even harder by the addition of a new little brother and a favorite big brother who has to go off to school every day. We spend our days glued together (he is sleeping next to me as I type) and I must hear, “Mama, I want you!” at least 50 times a day. That, and the meltdowns about paint and fudge and  not being able to eat in the living room. But wow, is he sweet, so sweet. And when he says things like, “I’m so excited to be having Christmas!” as we get ready to set up the tree, my heart totally melts and it makes up for the screaming about paint from earlier this morning.

I’m excited to share a good report on Knittykid. He had his annual visit with the cardiologist yesterday regarding his coarctation of the aorta. If you’ve been reading awhile, you’ll remember that we discovered this defect when he was two months old, and were told that heart surgery was imminent and to prepare to have it done within the next year. Terrifying, absolutely terrifying to think that they would be cutting into my baby’s heart. But as we had tests done and doctors conversed about his case, we were told it was a minor coarc, that we could wait and see for awhile, which we’ve been doing for the past two and three quarter years.

So the good news now? His coarc is staying minor, his aorta has not gotten any more pinched and his heart and blood pressure are great. So great that his doctor is thinking he may never need surgery. No promises, of course as things could change. But for now, it looks really, really good. Needless to say, we are thrilled!!

So the dyeing? Well, this Christmas I’m trying to keep my gift making simple and inexpensive. But I also want to do some stuff with the boys. Enter iDye and Dharma Trading Company’s great deals on t-shirts and silks.


Freezer paper stencils and playsilks. That’s where it’s at this year for us. (And knitting. There is also secret knitting!)

I am in love with the iDye. It works brilliantly and is so easy. Toss in the washer with some salt. Dry. You’re done. I dyed a bunch of new shirts for gifts and I also dragged out all of our older, stained and worn looking shirts. They look brand new! The only odd thing was that while the cotton shirts came out nice and bright, the silks came out more pastel-looking.

Here’s the scarlet and kelly green on the silks:


I wanted them brighter for my nephew but I was out of dye. What next? Koolaid, of course!!

One pack per silk, one cup water, microwave 2 minutes, (watch carefully!) cool, and rinse.


The green turned out great. The red is still not to my liking. I might try kool-aid round two.I’ll have the finished gifts up in a few more days, if certain small people choose to cooperate!



Filed under dyeing, family, giving, kids

Because there is so much I could say…

I’m probably not going to say much of anything at all tonight. There is just too much on my mind, and as I was doing the dishes I wrote about ten different blog posts in my head: destroyer boys and Destroyer boys, the first little kicks of Baby Three, reminding Baby Three every day to please be The Gentle Child, trying to decide where on earth to even give birth to Baby Three and be happy with my decision, indecisive two year olds who won’t stay asleep, birthday money to spend (and what on?), crummy weather, and oh yes, what I’m spinning and what I’m knitting. (I’m more on the mama and less on the knitty lately, I guess)

Yeah, I said it’s a lot. And I do want to knit tonight, so I’m going to keep it simple, light, and stick with yarn. Yarn you may have noticed on my Flickr badge:

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It’s Knitpick’s merino fingering weight, and it’s my first random experiment at dyeing my yarn.

Little Man helped with the photography…

I decided that I’ve been too worried about dyeing my own yarn, and dove in when the chance came up.

We dyed Easter eggs with natural dyes in playgroup last month, and had a bunch of dye left over, mostly turmeric and onion skins. I brought the dye home, did about 5 minutes on online research about mordants and soaked my yarn. I threw it on the pot, poured turmeric on half and onion skins on the other half and brought it to just about a simmer. I left it on low for about 30 minutes, let cool, and rinsed away. This is what I got:
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Pretty, huh?

It got the tiniest bit felted, but it wound off okay and I think it looks pretty darn good for 11:30 at night and not trying too hard.

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I cast on last night for a Baby Surprise, my first one ever. As soon as I have enough knit up I’ll show you how it looks OTN. But I must say, I’m pretty pleased with this yarn.


Filed under dyeing, stash, Uncategorized