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dyeexperiments

Well hello! A chat with a dear friend this week made me think about whether it was time I was ‘playing in my own playground’. I confess I’ve been a lot in Facebuik (sadly tethered to it was my beloved craft group organises via it) twitter @fatblackcatspaw where I get driven mad with distraction about politics (particularly local politics- I now know FAR too much about what is happening locally) and much more joyfully but addictively instagram also @fatblackcatspaw.  The problem is that you become a consumer of posts or reactive instead of standing in your playground playing. So as a huge enormous weight has shifted off me a few hours ago. Another annoying irritating local political shenneigans has finished its first consultation round. I’ve said my piece I can now think about other things.

I dyed these balls of yarn while I was ill in the last few weeks. They came to me via a craft group destash. Japanese yarn in slightly shaded green and pink and I over dyed them. I’m trying to wean myself off acrylic partly all the publicity about plastic me thinking about where our stuff goes and also the influence of two podcasters Knitbritish and Mrs M’s Curiosity Cabinet. 

The result has been that I’ve been making do and using up my stash. Not even buying from charity shops! I have had quite a few donations but even so I’m slowly making my way through it. I find that I have more than I thought in the under stair cupboard.

In other news the Fat Black Cat herself is sadly not so fat, has kidney disease and thyroid cancer so we sit together trying to give each other comfort. She may be furry but she holds my heart between her paws.

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January, crappy day at work, dark, nearly went down the social media rabbit hole, that unsatisfactory flitting about online but pulled myself back from the brink put on The Last Five Years the doc about David Bowie (Be Still My Beating Heart!) and took out some crafting and felt slightly whole again dundeeyarnbomb

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So a quick trip south. Watched fireworks over London on the 5th of November from Parliament Hill (and recently had an interesting facebuik convo trying to explain why we go mad for fireworks at this time of year with someone in Israel), Then to Cambridge two more firework displays, one in my brother’s garden with a fire and marshmallow toasting, Enforced crocheted of bunny outfits. At least they are now kitted out for winter. Then home to post off two more blankets for Knit-a-Square with squares made by Granny Greens.

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More experimentation – we got given a ball of undyed arran yarn 50g from New Lanark Mills in our conference bag for In The Loop so on my return I started dunking it in dye. I was a bit alarmed by the brightness of the colours so it went through as second bath of a violet/black. I’m trying the same colours again on a merino. Its drying on the radiator… and I might just leave it without the second colour.

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Well made the plunge… read lots of blogs… those yarns soak up an astonishing amount of dye. Finally found a use for all those jars I’d been keeping! First skein is a basic cheepo Wendy which I experimented on. The second is the posh Falkland Bluefaced Leicester which is v soft and I can’t wait to see dry.. but I’ve discovered how long yarn takes to dry. Days and days.

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Today I tried to prepare for dyeing striped sock yarn. This necessitated about an hour with a yard/meter converter on my computer. Much calculation with pen and paper. And probably winging it. It seems that most seasoned yarn dyers use a warping board which I do not have. I measured the 4.55 meters I needed for a 5 colour sock stripe around two chairs. It went fairly well until that appauling tangle appeared and I sat down and untangled it WITHOUT CUTTING IT. It took an hour… Miss F just sat and looked at me in that ‘what the hell’ expression. Later I dye!