Monday, July 21, 2008

Missing Piece Hobo Bag

Very often related to Nora Gaughan designs. Would guess, I would learn after so many attempts with so many of her creations, but obviously not. Well, this time it gets to stay like this since it found its usefulness: as a beach bag to keep volleyball and bathing towels.

It's from the book KnitKnit: Profiles + Projects from Knitting's New Wave, I used Katia Linen (doubled) and 6 mm needles. It was an easy pattern to foloow, but nothing prepared me that it only looks ok when it holds something bulky. Ah well, better luck next time.
Hobo Bag

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Dye with Nature: Golden Marguerite

I recently spent 5 days in Southern Estonia foraging for wild strawberries, blackberries and mushrooms (little luck with the last ones) and gathered lots of herbs and plants I know are good for dyeing. I got some alum and started experimenting. Right now I've boiled out the color from app. 3 litres of Yellow Chamomile or Golden Marguerite (lat. Anthemis Tinctoria) and am heating the wool in water+alum mixtureto make the color stick betterto the yarn. I'll let you know when I'm done with this experiment!

OK, I've taken out the firts KnitPicks Bare Peruvian Wool Skein from the pot and tadaa:

kollase kakraga
For future notice, dyeing process as follows:

Divide 100gr skein into two equal skeins.
Boil 3 litres of Yellow Chamomile flowers for an hour. Then filter out blossoms and stuff but don't throw them.
Wash yarn in water with some baking soda and regular soap. Rinse well.
Make 5 litres of water app. 35-40 degrees and ad 20 grams of alum. Stir well and put yarn in.
Make it nearly boil (90 degrees) and keep for 45 minutes. Stirring time to time.
Take out the first skein and put it in the pot with color. Stir and make the temperature go up to 90 degrees Celsius again. Keep it this way for app. 45 minutes. After 20 minutes add another spoonful (app. 10 grams) of alum and stir.
Take out skein, make it drain, leave it lukewarm water for 10 minutes, then drain, change water etc until it doesn't bleed anymore. Dry in shawdows.

I have another skein in pot. But about that once I've finished.

I got just slightly lighter color by using this recipe:

Use alum water to make second dye. Pour boiled blossoms onto clean white thin cloth, tie it up and put it in the alum water with the skein. Make the temp go up to 90 degrees. Keep it like that. This would give you a beige yarn, I also poured in the remaining color from the first lot, making the amount of water app. 7,5 l. Make sure water doesn't boil and keep yarn in for an hour. The result is following

kollase kakraga 001

Can't see much difference? Neither did I, until I had them next to each other and today that they are drier (I left them outside and it rained a little at night) the difference is slightly more visible.

kollase kakraga 002

I still have some dye left, I want to try and add some copper mordant. But I'm also trying out some Meadowsweet's flowers.

Queen Anne for mum

I guess you all know of MMario who has designed quite a few lace shawls and offers them free of charge online.
I have way too much lace yarn and my mom had her 50th birthday coming up, so I was on a lookout for a perfect non-triangular shawl for quite awhile. Until I found Queen Anne's Lace.

It is knit with Italian nearly cobweb weight merino wool that i found a few years back in Milan on offer for only €10 for 0,5 kilos. I got a whole bag and though I did Kiri, Shallowtail Shawl and Swan Lake and now Queen Anne, I still have a skein of it left!
I used needles nr. 3,75mm. The only thing I'm not 100% content is that my BO was too tight and I didn't manage to block the edge spikier, but overall it was an easy pattern to read and a nice lace to knit.
It took me nearly a month to complete but I took it very easy.

Private SwapBot

First of all, I'd like to mention a little private swap I had with Elisabetta in Hamburg (link leads to profile in Ravelry), we agreed that I'd send her some ultrathin dpns and Eesti Kindakirjad and Aino Praakli booklets and she promised to send a surprise in exchange. I ended up putting in her package 1,25-1,5-1,75 mm dpns and promised books-booklets as well as one skein of Kauni Green-Yellow, and she sent me new colorline from Wollmeise (100% superwash sock yarn) and a skein of Tausendschön Handgefärbte Sockenwolle in amazing colors. Thank you so much, Betta!
German sock yarn - lovely colors!