Dyeing in Alaska

I love color.  Winter in Alaska is a collage of neutrals, so I take full advantage of the bounty of colors in the summer.

Fireweed is blooming everywhere.DSCN0055

I dye yarn in a Fireweed colorway for a couple of local yarn shops.  Here’s what I dyed yesterday for The Quilted Raven. It looks way too intense in this photo, perhaps because it’s still damp. But I like having the color more intense than what is seen outdoors.DSCN0104DSCN9839  Here’s how it looks knit up.  I really dislike striping in hand-painted colorways, and by dyeing very short color segments I prevent that from happening.

I also dyed a blueberry colorway, thinking ahead to next month.DSCN0105 And here it is knit up:DSCN9835

I took advantage of yesterday’s sunshine to do some sun printing.  Here are a few of the results:DSCN0106I captured the large fern images by first dipping the fabric in a mixture of chemicals that I purchased from http://www.blueprintables.com; this company also publishes a very good how-to book called “Blueprints on Fabric.”  The chemicals are now also available from Jacquard. The resulting image is called a cyanotype.  The reason that the one fern is green is that I previously dyed the cotton green using Procion fiber-reactive dyes from Dharma Trading Company.

To create the two prints on the right–the pink and the lighter blue–I first brushed Lumi Inkodye onto the fabric–diluted 1:1 with water.  The ferns in the middle of the fabric do not show up well.  But now look at the backs of all four fabrics and you will see the ferns show up perfectly! DSCN0107 Maybe I should have thinned the Inkodye more or else soaked the fabric in water first????  I’ve had lots of experience with cyanotypes and am new to Inkodye.  I see more experimenting in my future–if we get another sunny day this summer!

I will also do more experimenting with formatting a blog!  I hope to post at least once a week and to include information about yarn shop updates.


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