Thursday, August 6, 2015

NLVK's Dye Day and the Results - Amazing!

Hand Dyeing Yarns

At Friday Night Knitting last week, a bunch of us were showing off our hand-dyed yarns from July’s dye day meeting.  We all had a blast, but some of us weren’t as happy as we’d hoped with our finished product.

What does hand dyed really mean?  I checked with one of my favorite knitting authors, Clara Parkes of Knitters Review, in her 2007 The Knitter’s Book of YarnParkes discusses all the ways of dyeing yarn – from huge vat dyeing done on an industrial scale, to smaller vat dyeing done with more subtly, to immersion dyeing, and finally to hand painting or hand dyeing.

Each method has its purpose and place, and its unique product.

Then there’s the choice of dyeing the roving versus dyeing the spun yarn.  Much more subtlety can be achieved if the roving is dyed, and then various colors are spun together to create just what you’re looking for.  Think of Noro yarns.

Or, rather than just using a bottle of dye marked red, mix yellow and orange, and maybe blue, and even a little black for some depth, to create your own red.

Hand-paint yarns also offer unique knitting challenges.  Some are designed to self-stripe based on a certain number of stitches per row, like many sock yarns.  Some are just wild mixes of color that will do what they will do.  Others can be examined to determine what they’re most likely going to do when knit.

Knitter’s magazine K111 includes an article, Taming Color with Magic Numbers.  Author Laura Bryant,, talks about cross-dyed hanks, and dyed-around hanks, and how you can determine the Magic Number, which will allow YOU to decide how your hand-dyed yarn will work up.  With just a change of a few stitches, knitting can go from stacked colors or splotches of pooling to an argyle look!!  Check out this You-Tube from Knitting Daily about this technique

I've added Artful Color-Mindful Knits to my wish list at Amazon.  I want to dye a skein of sock yarn so that I can get that argyle look!! 

Twist Collective is a great site, too.  Check out this interesting article titled Planned Pooling .   

This is Rachel’s project – her daughter, Marcail, dyed four skeins of yarn, and had a specific plan.  Rachel’s knitting with two of the yarns to make a larger, denser sweater – mixing the two differently dyed yarns looks great! I think we’ve got a budding fiber artist there!

Autumn dyed her yarn a whole bunch of colors (isn’t it great – looks like a box of crayons with extra blues and greens), and then used a stitch pattern other than regular stockinette or garter stitch, which makes the yarn work and look different.

Maybe you had one particular thing in mind, but your finished product doesn’t meet that goal.  It’s NEVER wrong or bad, it’s just not what you had in your head.  So, make lemonade!

I guess the take-away here is that no matter what you’ve got, you can do amazing things with it.  

Kathy Meggitt

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Fair Time!!!!!

Fellow knitters- Fair Time is upon us. The Fair Committee has requested the following information be relayed. Read carefully as there are important dates and information. As always, got questions? Just ask!

Information from the Fair Committee
Fair time is almost upon us. The guild has issued a challenge to all members to enter at least one item in the Handwork and Needlework division this year. Entry dates at the fairgrounds are Friday, August 14, noon to 8:00 pm and Saturday, August 15, 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.

If you are not able to personally deliver your entries to the Fairgrounds during the scheduled entry times, you can bring your items to Espresso Cafe on the next two Fridays from 4 to 7 and Mary will have forms there. Marcia and/or Mary will take the items on entry day for submission. To determine which division you would like to enter your items in, you can go to the fair's website, click on Exhibitor Guide and go to Handwork and Needlework to see a list of the various categories.

The August meeting date will move to Saturday, August 22 from 1 to 3 at the State fairgrounds. We will be helping Patty Miller, Superintendent of the Handwork and Needlework Division display the items entered in this division. If you are interested in helping earlier in the day, Patty says she'll begin setting up around 9am.

You are encouraged to volunteer to knit in public during the fair and you can sit inside the display area to do this. There may be passes available for those who volunteer to work at least 4 hours at the fair. Passes may be limited, so please be prepared to sign up with Patty when we do the installation of the exhibit on August 22nd.

Information from Patty Miller, Superintendent, Handwork & Needlework

Hello and I look forward to everyone's help again this year.

FAIRGROUNDS Entry – Irwin Exhibits:
Friday, August 14, noon - 8 p.m.
Saturday, August 15, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m

Judging is on Sunday.

Setup is on Saturday, August 22nd, beginning at 9am and working until we are finished.

Demonstrators are invited to do so anytime during the fair.

FAIRGROUNDS Pick-up – Irwin Exhibits:
Tuesday, September 8, 2 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Saturday, September 12, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

We will begin taking down the display at noon on September 8th.

If anyone has any items to help make the display beautiful is encouraged to bring them on the 22nd.

See you soon- Patty Miller

Helpful Links:
Handwork and Needlework Division

Possible items needed for the display:

  • Empty plastic containers (wipes, cool whip, coffee creamer bottles, big, small, etc...)
  • Black fabric
  • Mannequins (everyone has those laying around!)
  • Plastic Shopping Bags (to help 'fluff' items)
Don't forget- we have prizes for Guild members who enter items in the Fair! Items that qualify for the basket drawings need to be hand knit items and entered in the Handwork and Needlework Department. First-time entrants will receive a ticket for entering an item in the Handwork/Needlework Division. A second basket will be up for grabs for all members- you will receive one ticket per item in the Handwork/Needlework. The more items you enter, the more chances you have! The third basket will go to the member entering the most items in the Handwork/Needlework Division. Join us at the September meeting for the drawings! In order to be entered for the basket drawings, members need to bring all the items you entered and either the yellow or green copy of the fair entry form.

Good Luck and see you at the Fair!

Rebecca M.