Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Green Sweater Project: Dyeing

Another belated post, this time from August 2011.  

In July I started cleaning a Romney fleece acquired locally from a friend in the fiber guild, resulting in about 5 pounds of decently clean wool.  I had decided at some point that I wanted this to be a sheep-to-sweater event, just to say I'd done.  I decided that I wanted a rich, multi-toned green, maybe even a bit heathered. 

So I pulled out my dye sample book and newer color box, picked out the colors that made my heart sing, and set about dyeing.

First is soaking the wool in hot water with a splash of vinegar. 

I found I could comfortably work with about 3/4 pound at a time.  More than that and things got unwieldy, and the fiber didn't have much room to move in the dye pot.  I used a large steamer tray insert in a buffet server to do my immersion dyeing.

Here's a result of the primary color drying on the rack.

I processed a total of six batches over about four days.  Two of the primary green, three of other shades, and one of a fuschia that was supposed to be a bit more salmon as a contrast color.  We'll have to see how that works out during the blending.

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