Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Fiber Slutting

I was invited to spend a relaxing day at the home of someone who worked with my dear friend Laura. Her friend Sue wanted to gather some friends for a day of "Fiber Slutting". That was a new term to me! It was to be a day when we sat and worked on our crafts with no outside interferance. And it was!

We had a nice snowstorm going on outside and were entertained by a squirrel just outside the wondow trying to get into the bird feeder. Sue has two cats, one mellow fellow and a frisky kitten (who loved fiber!) They also enjoyed looking at the squirrel.

We all had different projects...wheel spinning...knitting and drop spindling. No one brought rug hooking but perhaps I will the next time! Pot luck food was in abundance and we enjoyed creamy pasta, a delicious breakfast casserole, lunch meats, fresh fruit scones and more.

Sue's kitten helped re-arrange our yarn, and her dog supervised the affair.

It was a lovely day and I made some new fiber loving friends. I also revealed to Laura that another "kidnapping" is being planned for the end of February. Once or twice a year I give her dates and tell her to reserve that time. I let her know what to bring as far as clothes, but I don't reveal where we are going until we get there, and she doesn't ask! Of course I ask her husband's permission but he always lets me kidnap her. We have enjoyed kidnappings to the Shelburne rug show, Fiber Frolic in Maine, Brimfield Antiques Festival and other fun places. She will love where I'm taking her this time! Girlfriend's Getaway!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Remember His message...

Wishing all my friends and family near and far a blessed and peaceful day. Take a moment during your celebrations with family to remember that this day is based on Christ's birth and his messages of generosity to those less fortunate, forgiveness and love for all. Try to bring the true spirit of the holiday's meaning into your life this year. God bless you and take care of you. Hugs, Lauri

The sheep in the picture was a gift from my friend Diane on Wool Snippets and it's precious! I made the "feather tree" from wool that I dyed. I am planning to spend a quiet afternoon rug hooking, and within a few days should be able to call my "Old Glory" rug complete. We shall see!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Not a creature was stirring...

Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house...not a creature was stirring...except me!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Snow Dye experiment I go experimenting again. I hear about snow dying, and we have an abundance of snow on the ground and a day off of work. My disclaimer? I don't know what I'm doing. So here goes...

I soaked white wool with a little dish detergent to open the fibers and get it ready to take the dye. Then I placed a piece rumpled up on the bottom of my old dying pan. I had three salt shakers in which I placed non-iodized salt, and one color of Cushings dye in each shaker. I used 4:1 ratio with salt to dye mixture. Then I sprinkled it all over! I was wearing gloves to protect the dye from getting on my skin, and was doing this on a day with no wind so I wouldn't be breathing any nasty dye.

Next I added a layer of snow, and then another piece of wet wool. Then I sprinkled the salt-dye mixture again. I did this four times with wool, dye mixture and snow layers.

I ran out of my mixture for the top layer, so it is covered with plain snow. We'll see what happens!

After a few hours in the sun the snow partially melted, and the water merged my colors together. It didn't look very impressive! But the wool had soaked up the dye and there were no areas without color.

I took the frozen mess inside and used tongs to rinse it under cool water. I rinsed off all the salt and remaining dye until the water ran rather clear.

Then I took each piece of wet wool and rolled it in plastic wrap. I microwaved it until it was hot, and then let it sit for a few hours.

I must say I was surprised by the results. The photo doesn't do it justice, but the wool is quite pretty and the colors merged beautifully for nice marbled effect. What I don't understand is why it came out so light? Nice pastel colors, but I didn't expect pastels. Perhaps the colors would have held stronger if I had heated the wool with the dye on it without rinsing? Or if I had baked the wool in the oven instead of using the microwave? I don't know, but it was a fun experiment and I have four pretty pieces of wool for another project. Is it too early to be thinking about Spring?