Manifestation – A Chemo Hat in Cochineal and Logwood Organic Wool!!

A very exciting thing happened last week.

I finally saw a finished project made from Escape to Evermore yarn.

Sue Greens Chemo Sleep Cap

It was made with this yarn.

F-2 Logwood Cochineal in nest

An organic wool dyed using cochineal and logwood to give a soft color combination that I just loved.

It had traveled a bit before finding its final home with Sue Green – the person who knit this wonderful hat.

back view of Sue Green's hat

It first went to the Beltaine Festival.

Escape Yarn at the Beltaine Festival

That is it in the center.

Then to the Fairy Festival . . .

Escape yarns on display at Faerie Fest

Here it is in the center lower left.

It was dyed using a highly technological process.

yarns dyeing in pots in the back yard

The center two pots are the Logwood and Cochineal dye pots.

Eventually it ended up in my Etsy shop as yarn F-2.

close-up of logwood cochineal yarn

Sue, who has her own Etsy shop – Greenbriar Creations – is on a team with my husband Chip and had heard about Escape through him.  She gave F-2 a higher purpose – to bring warmth to someone – possibly someone who is sick and going through chemo now.

Wow.

I am so proud.

So if you get a chance, visit Sue’s shop.  She does wonderful things with upcycling and wool and vintage linens that are so worth seeing – and buying!!  I am a sucker for antique linens and love to look through her shop.

And if you are in the market for a great looking hat made from naturally dyed organic wool . . . .

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Natural Dyes – On to a Brighter Blue

I love Blue. I love Indigo Blue. I am sooo a blue jean girl. But my indigos always seemed to stop at the more faded indigo blue that had a dusky tone to it – like I get in slightly worn blue jeans –

– not that great deep blue that you get in the dark blue unwashed blue jeans. I tried doing more dips for longer periods of time in the indigo dye baths but still, after rinsing, I got the same tone of blue in my yarns.

So I experimented.

Typically when dyeing with indigo (see my post of June 13, 2012 in my companion blog “A Polish Granddaughter”) you let the yarn drip/aerate for 20 minutes after each dip. After you have completed the dyeing process you place the yarn in a vinegar rinse to return the yarn to a neutral pH.  So I started wondering what would happen if I pushed it to a neutral pH sooner?  Could I stop the process at a point where I would not lose the deeper blues I was getting out of the pot?

So I filled a container with 50/50 water and vinegar and took a couple of skeins I had been dyeing in the indigo pot, allowed them to aerate just long enough to turn the dark blue I was looking for and then put them in the container with the water and vinegar, completely submerging the yarn.  I left them there for a few minutes while the yarn cooled and then hung them to dry on the rack outside.

You can see that the blue kept its deep dark tones – going almost to a dark royal blue.  It is sooo cool!!

Unfortunately I can’t show you the finished skeins because they sold before I got a chance to photograph them after rinsing and re-skeining!!  They did not lose color during the rinsing.  I am hooked!!  Here is a shot of two more skeins that were dyed using this process.  I love it.

Try it if you are doing indigo dyeing.  I would love to know if you had the same result as I did.  Now I can’t wait until the spring when I can start the indigo pots back up (as you NEED ventilation when indigo dyeing which Northeastern winters don’t always allow) to get some more of these brilliant deep blues. 

Happy dyeing!!