Archive for the 'Knitting Stuff' Category

Finally – the big Kool Aid Dye Job and an FO

Posted by jackie blue on May 6th, 2008

I know, imagine this – an actual post about knitting. I *finally* finished the Lush and Lacy cardigan and wore it yesterday. Overall, I am really happy with how it came out. I know that I took a big risk by dyeing a whole garment rather than just yarn. Even more so that it was my first dyeing experience.

As predicted, the initial results did come out a bit spotty. But I was fine with not having a uniform color – I didn’t mind some variegation as I felt it would look hand dyed and that’s ok – it’s just the old ugly color showing through looked somewhat brownish against the new bright happy green. My solution – mix up more Kool Aid in a glass – take an old pastry brush – go over spotty areas – microwave 2 minutes to set the color. I did this a couple of times, and I’m completely satisfied with the result.

Yarn used – Elann Pure Alpaca in a dull grayish green that depressed me.

Kool Aid used – Lemon Lime, 50 packets purchased, maybe 30-35 total used.

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Excuse the cropped shots, we were not looking our best yesterday. 
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This sweater makes me happy. 

Sigh

Posted by jackie blue on April 29th, 2008

I’ve been holding off on posting – wanting to have a new FO to show off after weeks of non-activity – but it’s just not done yet, so here’s one of those catch up lists instead.

What I’ve been up to while not blogging:

1) Going to shows. I’ve seen 4 Broadways shows since the new year – and I’m seeing my fifth next week. I’ve also been to the opera, and seen several bands. I have one of those concerts tomorrow night, too. *added later – just bought tix to the 6th show, 3 days after the 5th. whew!

2) I have been knitting. I finished the Lush and Lacy except for tacking down the pockets, and the %#^&%^# buttons that were shipped last week and still haven’t arrived. Bummed, because not only was it good blog fodder, but we have a nice cool week in which to wear alpaca. Soon it will be 85 degrees and that’s just way too warm for me to be wearing anything fuzzy. I also started the Sylph cardigan from Interweave, but it’s black, and doesn’t make for very interesting photos. And guess what else I ressurected from the dead? My Alice. Working on the second sleeve.

3) I’ve been sewing a bit. I got out the duvet cover I started last year and finished all the blocks, then realized I was grossly short on fabric for a queen sized cover. And, also discovered the fabric I bought has been discontinued. I combed the internets for places with some stock left – and it’s on it’s way. I just need the fabric and one more rainy weekend to hopefully finish it up.

4) I’ve been ridiculously addicted to a game on Facebook called Packrat. I’ve lost hours and hours of my life to this game, which is another reason I’ve had little urge to post here. Now that I’ve nearly finished what I could at that game till the devs release more of it, my free time is a little more diversified.

5) I’ve been slowly trying to update my portfolio/website. I need to get some more work and make some real money for a change.

And that’s the short list. I hope to have some buttons in my mail box when I get home and I should have a pciture happy post for you soon.

Dyeing Experiment

Posted by jackie blue on February 22nd, 2008

So the other night I wanted to see how the 2 Kool Aid flavors I got would look on the boring pale green yarn. I took a small bit of the yarn and took 2 baggies, mixed some of each flavor, and popped them with the yarn in the microwave. I did 3 packets of the lemonade and only 2 of the mango, and I only microwaved for 2 minutes, so I’m sure I can get more vibrant results.

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On the left, we have the original color. In the center, the lemonade, which has certainly pumped up the green to a happier place. The right, the mango, which is a little muddy, but again, only used 2 packets and 2 minutes of heat.

I know there’s concern about dyeing knitted pieces rather than just yarn so I should have knitted swatches, and still might.

The weird thing is, the lemon one has made a stiff, crackly yarn, and the mango is still pretty soft. So if using the lemon, will have to rinse/wash and block a second time. Also, the concern of shrinkage has me thinking that I will use the microwave method the whole time, and not a pot of hot water, which might felt it more.

So the verdict: if I do this, it will probably be with the lemon. I sure have enough green sweaters, but the lemon seems the least likely to cause extreme blotchiness, and it’s readily available down the street.

Lush and Lacy underway

Posted by jackie blue on February 20th, 2008

Finishing a deadline late last week meant that I could get in some knitting on the weekend, and I’m nearly done with the back of the Lush and Lacy. I’m not sure what I’m thinking, knitting a Spring sweater out of alpaca (I tend to be warmer than most people), and I’m still not loving the color, but Michelle gave me the idea to dye and I think I will. I want to dye it with Kool Aid since I want a bright happy color anyway, and I’d rather use something fairly non-toxic as I don’t have any big extra pots and I don’t care if I dump this in a soup pot, it’s food after all.

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I  had already started the sweater, so instead of dyeing yarn skeins I will be dyeing knit pieces (before sewing) – anyone have any good luck with kool aid and dyeing complete garments?

Now the problem is what color, and finding the Kool Aid. Seems every store in my neighborhood carries only the sweetened kind but I managed to find the packets of only 2 flavors in a local supermarket. Not the ones I’d hoped for, I wanted blues or greens, but you know yellow and orange are the colors for Spring around here.

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I bought a few packets to experiment before picking a color. If they turn out awful on the pale green, I might have to resort to Ebay to get other packets. Looks like a dyeing experiment might happen around here tonight, folks.