• Experimenting with color

    From the left (above), that's pomegranate, cutch, cutch over pom's exhaust bath, 3 red's exhaust bath with a little cutch, 3 reds (madder, cochineal and quebracho red), and logwood purple exhaust bath (bottom two skeins were twisted).

    You can see some color/strand variation in the cutch, and it's present elsewhere, too. I don't think I mind it. Aside from color, one of the things I'm experimenting with is how not to pull a hot, tangled mess from my dyepots -- twisting some skeins, very loosely twisting others then un-twisting mid-simmer; not twisting them at all then being extremely careful in how I move them around during their dye time. We'll see what finally proves out. I may try plastic shower curtain rings next (and hope they hold up to boiling water!). That's a trick I saw several other much much more experienced kettle-dyers using on Instagram. Thankful for that.

    The deep red by far has elicited the most excitement. Reds are exciting! I'm not going to list these for sale just yet, though. I feel the need to knit something up in this red especially, and see if/how the color bleeds and wears. It was tough to rinse clear after it's dye bath, with lots of color running, so I'm hesitant to embrace it as a permanant addition to the line-up. We shall see if it passes the tests. I like the pink that resulted from it's exhaust bath, though. 

    The gray that came from an old logwood purple exhaust may be a keeper. Just the solid gray up top; The gray/whites that resulted from twisted skeins will get a dip or two in the indigo vat. Just to see what happens. A deep slightly variegated blue, maybe? At least two of the pale yellows will also get indigo dips, in hopes of a pleasant green.

    Part of me really wants to tag these and list them on my Etsy shop (it's not live yet, but when it is there will be a shop link to it here on this site). I'm happy with them! However, this testing phase is important, I want to feel completely confident in my product.

    So this week was a heavy dye week, and aside from possibly getting an indigo vat going, next week will be more of a "business" week. I need to solidify goals and vision for color offerings. Need to decide whether to continue with my current worsted base or possibly commission a custom mill/spin (right now it's a two-ply worsted, and I'm thinking of a tighter 4-ply; still American wool of course).  I need to make plans for packaging/shipping Etsy orders, and transfer my many notebook dye notes, recipes and scribblings to a more organized catalogue/recipe book. Business-y stuff... Wish me luck with that! Dyeing is more fun.