Monday, October 02, 2006

Hand-Dye, and A Missing Lizard

Several months ago, Phina Borgeson, one of our knitting guild members, offered to teach us a bit about dying yarn. We met three times this year in the evening at Canine Companions for Independence (thanks to one of our members and her knitting assistance dog), so it was perfect being able to use their kitchen, with its sinks, stoves, and microwave.

Fortunately, not a huge group turned out tonight, and so there was enough time to not feel completely rushed as we soaked our yarns, and either dyed them a single color in the stove-top pots, or hand dyed them, painting on the dyes while the hanks lay in a Pyrex dish before microwaving them.

I took some photos of the others' yarns as they were painting and dyeing them, and I'll get a page up on them sometime this week or so, along with my transcribed notes from Phina's instructions, but I thought I'd post my hank here.

We were using Paz Easter egg dyes and vinegar. Here's my hand-dye using the turquoise and hot pink, all wrapped in plastic wrap before putting it into the microwave:

Once the water runs clear after microwaving for a couple of minutes, I rinsed the hank out under hot water, carefully squeezed out the remaining water, and here it is!

I didn't get the turquoise all the way down the 'stack' of yarn so there are some color variations, from a bit a of white showing, through different intensities of the turquoise. Where the turquoise and hot pink overlapped a bit, there are touches of purple.

My favorite colors!!!

Phina said that the best time to by the Paz kits are right after Easter, when they go on sale. She also recommends splurging and buying the 9 tab kit so you get the cool colors like turquoise. On the way home, I was envisioning color junkies lurking in dim alleys, swapping Paz tabs of colors they don't like with those who have colors they do.

So, I get home, and find Mike has left a calling card for me, letting me know that he got down and went cruising after I left the house shortly after 6 PM. I, uhm, stepped over it on my way to hang my hank of still-wet yarn in the iguana room and say hey to Mike...only to find he was not there.

When in my room changing clothes, I did check my side of the bed to see if there was a tail sticking out from under the body pillow. No tail. I checked in between the blue- and white-covered duvets to see if he was laying under the white one. No Mike.

Off I went to clean up his pile (my gawd can that boy poop!), and then look for him. Not under my desk, which is where he's gone the last couple of times he decided to sleep outside of his own room. So, I picked up a flashlight and went to check under my bed. Before I got down on the floor, however, I decided to check 'his' side of the bed, just in case... And there he was! Well, there his tail was:

I flipped back the pile of duvets to check on him, and he was still quite warm. Between the feather bed on top of the mattress, the flannel sheet and flannel-covered down comforter (the blue one under the white cotton-covered down comforter), he stays warm so long that it is detectable the next morning.

So, a productive day: I learned to hand-dye and pot-dye yarn, and Mike put himself to bed (well, into my bed) on the right side for a change!

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