Friday, 19 October 2007

Sneak preview - yummy new yarns!

My friend, Julia and I, took a break from moving boxes yesterday to dye some new yarns I received last week. Here are our results.....

When this lush, ultra-fine yarn dropped through the letterbox I couldn't believe it was handspun. It is so fine, yet so strong. The yarn is handspun from silk and goat fibres by hill farmers in the Ukraine. I was also sent a knitted stole made from the yarn - it is just divine! When I can bear to wind it into a ball (instead of just admiring it), I'll post a pic of it knitted up.

Next up was a new sock yarn. It's 90% alpaca/10% nylon and is really lovely. The colours remind me of LoveHearts or rainbow crystals (ooh, showing my age now!). I'll be selling this undyed and plan to have a sock kit for it soon, but it's so irresistible, I might dye some up and sell it ready-dyed too.

Last but not least, we just had time to dye some new Bluefaced Leicester roving before our "dial-a-curry" arrived. The pic is a bit dark but you get the general idea. I might just have to spin a bit of this over the weekend just to "make sure" it spins up okay ; )

Natural dyeing - awesome!

Skeins drying in the bathroom (the skeins are not really small, it's a two foot tall model toothpaste tube!). From left to right we have: weld, madder, indigo, mystery green plant mix, madder/brazilwood blend.

I've just spent the weekend with Jenny Dean learning lots of new, exciting things to do with Earthues natural dye extracts and some new extracts which I'm hoping to be selling soon. Here's a taster of some of the amazing colours we produced. The pics don't really do the samples justice but trust me, they are fab : )

Some of our samples. We used lots of dyestuffs, including madder, brazilwood, weld, cutch and an amazing green plant of unknown origin (!). We also used indigo to overdye some of our samples and got some super results.

I had a fantastic time with Jenny and her husband, Roger, and they made me feel so welcome. If you are lucky enough to have the opportunity to go to one of Jenny's workshops or talks I wholeheartedly recommend it. Her knowledge is second to none and she is great fun to work with.

A huge thank you to Jenny and Roger for their hospitality and for making my stay so enjoyable.

Wednesday, 10 October 2007

Dyeing workshop, Eyam

Had a great day yesterday at my dyeing workshop in Eyam. Lots of yummy colours appeared like magic from the dyepots. I'm always so excited to see everyone's skeins - I still can't quite believe that I do this for a living. This is the bit which makes all the bookeeping/tax returns etc. seem worthwhile!
A big thank you to Becky and Debbie for their enthusiasm (and patience while I wrestled with my niddy noddy!). Here they are with their skeins. (Check out Debbie's gorgeous blog at

Furniture at last

Our new wardrobe should be arriving today - a great big, ornate Victorian thing from a fab antiques village in Longsight. Wonder if I'll find Narnia at the back of it.......
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