Tuesday, September 25, 2007


I have really enjoyed my foray into dyeing with natural materials. It's been a small venture, only 5 skeins of rowan chunky that I picked up on sale.

I ended up using several resources for information on how to dye. There is a very good tutorial that I found on-line which turned out to be the most concise. From my local library I came across, Alma Lesch's "Vegetable Dyeing", and older book which is excellent. I liked it so much that I bought it used from Amazon. This is a very good book for recipes and just what colors you're likely to get from different materials, how to adjust the colors, along with how color fast the dye will be. Another good book is The Dyer's Companion by Dagmar Klos. This is for the serious dyer which I hope to use more of in the future.

I used peach leaves from two of my peach trees and premordanted my yarn with tin. This gave me a lovely mid yellow color with a greenish tint. I liked it but it wasn't quite the yellow I wanted. I adore yellows with an red base but that was beyond the scope of what I had available so I "saddened" the yellow with iron. This produced a lovely golden/olive with a "somewhat solid" tendency. The yarn shifts from a paler yellow gold (mostly where the ties on the skeins were) to a deeper olive. The swatch is lovely. Since I don't have a huge amount of this yarn I am not quite sure what it will be made up into. I think perhaps a nice vest for the coming winter (or the next winter at the rate I'm going).

The Celtic Festival was a lot of fun. I was somewhat stressed though because I had learned the day before that my mother had fallen and was in the hospital. Since she was stable and not really hurt I made the hard decision to not cancel and to see her right afterward. Her health is overall very good but she can no longer make good decisions for herself.

I realized that I couldn't do the job I wanted with the vests in time for the festival so switched over to seat cushions which turned out very well and were much appreciated. Not only are the folding chairs that they use hard they are cold!

Sebastopol has some very whimsical art. And it rained which is very unusual for CA in Sept.

I've done a great deal of driving in the last few days and talked a lot to various medical people and social workers. It seems that every day I get a new batch of people. I got back home last night and will be going back early next week. The time has come to find a care facility up near me and get my mother into a safe and secure environment where I can see her without driving 5 hours and most of all be sure that her needs are being met. Just before the sun went down I saw myself in shadow along Highway 5 hurrying north and snapped this shot.


At 9:26 PM, Blogger Valerie said...

Love your golden yarn.. it has that yummy, harvest-y, hot buttered squash feeling to it. Actually it makes me hungry :)

I also love the shot of you with your friends! You guys look like you are having fun.

Sorry it's getting to that stage with your mother. Rob's mother is getting up there too, and we're starting to have discussions and try to arrange things while being on the other side of the world -- always a challenge. It's almost worse when you CAN drive there but it takes half a day to do it. I wish you best of luck in your search for the right solution.


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