Skip to main content

Forbidden forest?

This months challenge in the I'd Dye for Britain group on Ravelry is to use primary colours to make secondary or tertiary colours. I thought I'd add to the experiment by trying food colouring for the first time.

I approached it with my scientific hat on, making graduated dilutions using blue and yellow colouring. As you can see the dilutions are all carefully labelled and measured with scientific precision.



One of the things I like about working with fibre is things do not always go according to plan. It turns out fibre is more like chromatography paper. If the dye is made up of more than one pigments these pigments may separate due to their different molecular weights. The first skein I dyed worked beautifully in the mid sections with varying tones of vibrant greens. The yellower and bluer ends weren't so great, especially the blue/greens which separated into indigo and turquoise rather than deeper greens.



Reskeining really does work wonders for making yarn look better, I really like the mix of greens, indigos and mustards in this yarn and may well make myself some foresty socks. It reminds me of some of the paintings I saw in the Per Kirkeby exhibition and also of the Forbidden Forest in Harry Potter which I'm rereading at the moment.



I remembered doing chromatography experiments at school and playing around with black ink on coffee filter paper and paper towels, watching the black ink magically splurge out into blues reds and yellows. I tried the same thing with the food colouring dilutions on kitchen towel to see if it correlated with what happens on the yarn.



The colours match up quite well so I'll use this technique to predict some dye jobs. Not all of them though, that would take some of the fun out of it.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Deja deja decisions

After all my decision making in my post yesterday, and my eagerness to cast on, my brain interfered again and I spent most of the evening playing with colour combos in Excel.

It looked like this:



I stared at it for ages, showed it to my other half, stared at it again, showed it to my other half*
*repeat until bedtime.

I decided to get stuck in having whittled it down to two possible layouts. I'm still not one hundred percent sure but I'm hoping I'll have a better idea by the time I'm at the next colour change.

Food: easy five spice soda bread

In that idle time between Christmas and New Year some have dubbed Twixmas, I found myself recuperating from spending a week with my very intense mother-in-law by watching mid-morning TV.


I flicked over to Nadiya's British Food Adventure where this recipe for red split lentils and five-spice soda bread caught my eye.

I'm a big fan of curry; it's my favourite cuisine and the combo of lentil soup and soda bread ticked the right boxes. My dad is a keen breadmaker and he talked about making soda bread over Christmas which had tickled my interest. While I like the idea of making bread, I'm unlikely to have bread flour or yeast in and I find the kneading and proving off putting, but soda bread is doable.

The lentil soup was eaten before I thought of photographing it. It's similar to dhals we routinely make for dinner - so cheap and easy to do - though the garlic and butter were a treat. The bread has lasted for a few days as there are only two of us in the house. I manag…

Deja decisions

Almost two years to the day that I cast on for what has so far been my biggest FO, I'm casting on another.

When I found out my first nephew was on the way I um'd and ah'd over what to knit for him; i.e. I spent hours browsing Ravelry looking at ALL THE BABY THINGS.

I wanted to make him a blanket, something he'd hopefully use and keep for several years, maybe into adulthood. While I like knitting modular patterns, crocheting motifs and generally being a clever clogs, my brain kept on returning to a simple yet effective pattern.

#knitting pattern is Teddy blanket by Millamia A photo posted by clarestorry (@gingerknits) on Apr 20, 2014 at 9:44am PDT

I've worked with MillaMia in the past and their oh so cheerful Teddy Blanket had always attracted a lot of attention at yarn shows. It's a very easy knit though it is an exercise in stamina.

After doing more browsing (thanks again Ravelry) I decided on it but using Rico Essential Cotton, not MillaMia yarn, as although …