Only the Good Dye Young

EDIT: Rae says this blog needs a glossary, so here it is.
Bluefaced Leicester (BFL), merino, corriedale, rambouillet, shetland – breeds of sheep
roving – a big strip of processed wool
locks – a piece of wool just as it is off the sheep.
skein – yarn wrapped into a big loop

Today I dyed three big skeins of yarn and some fiber. They are AWESOME. I am pleased with the results of all, if a little surprised or confused by one or two. Two of them are variegated blues, greens, browns and gold. Another is a sort of really dark rainbow. The BFL roving has pale spots of green and brown which should spin up very pretty, and some merino locks that were supposed to be “gun metal” and instead came out pink and purple. What the hell? Who knows. I’m still pretty new at this dying business, but every time I try a new technique or have something unexpected happen, it’s exciting.

One of the more exciting discoveries was how pretty moorit shetland wool looked when overdyed. I recently bought a three pound fleece from Windswept Farms, and I’ve been having a lot of fun with it. It’s softer than the Leicester I worked with before, not as soft as merino of course, but the grease loss is a lot less, and the texture is quite nice. Of course, the main source of my fiber fixes these days is working through the 4 pounds of fleece I bought from Wooly Wool of the West. The fleece from Annabelle continues to rock. In fact, the three skeins I dyed today were from her. This sheep has a lineage that includes merino, corriedale and rambouillet. What a great background, huh? It’s super soft and crimpy, the locks hold together well when washing, and the staple length is like, 4″ after washed. I gotta get me some sheep, man.

As a relative newcomer to spinning, I still find most of my inspiration comes from looking at the works of other people. I’d like to share a few of my favorites from Etsy. These fiber artists are incredible! I aspire to be their peer. Click on the picture to go to the listing.

“Aspen”, merino and bamboo roving by Knittyandcolor

“Fire Pit” by Huggybearknits

“Morrigan,” by Welovethor

“Heathered – Earthen Hues” by Greenwoodfiber

“Iron Man vs Gryffinger” by Knittink

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