Sunday, March 18, 2007

I Have a Green Thumb

And I haven't even been gardening!

Occupational hazard I guess. One of my gloves must have blown a hole 'cuz when I peeled it off...green thumb. That'll be my friend for the next day or so.




Thanks for all your comments over the last few days. The dye jokes continue ad nauseum I see. Nice to see a few new people post. Hello to Jane! There aren't many of us; we have to stick together. Do you get as many wretched Tarzan jokes as I do?

I also see that some of you are suggesting ebay/etsy. Y'all won't be satisfied until I'm a factory, will you? LOL. Yes, I'm aware of those venues, and I might get there one of these days, but in the meantime, I've got quite enough to do right here. Besides the activity you see happening on the blog and in the shop, I have custom orders as well, some of them quite significant. I am happy with the level of production, mail services, and income that is happening already, but I will check out other sites if it slows down here.

AND NOW A WORD ABOUT THE YARNS I'M USING:

I list new yarns in my shop from most recent to least. This means you always see what is new first, but the yarns are not grouped together by type.

Here are the basic categories of yarn that I use:

Basic wool yarns in worsted/aran weight that are handwash/feltable:

1. Sold in 100g/220yd lots
2. The base yarns are good quality solid wools like (Peruvian) Wool of the Andes, elann's (Peruvian) Highland wool, Patons Classic Merino, Galway worsted, etc.
3. Colorways in the store are one skein unless otherwise listed. I can make a larger lot of the colorway on request.

There will be basic DK weight yarns with similar characteristics (Peer gynt, etc.)

I have another type of basic yarn that I would call basic rustic wool. I have two of these: New Zealand (z-twisted, sturdy, 18st on 4.5mm needles); AND Quebec Light Worsted (s-twisted, sturdy, 19-20st on 4-4.5mm needles). Both of these basic wools felt beautifully, done single or double stranded. They are on the scratchier side (similar to Noro Kureyon), but they soak up colour and glow from the inside out.

ALL of the above listed basic wool yarns will be 14.00 for 100grams

Nearly all of my other yarns are also sold in 100g lots. In many cases I have spliced or tied two 50g balls together to make a larger skein. This means the dye lot is consistent for socks, hats, whatever your one-skein project needs. For multi-skein projects, you'll need to alternate skeins for even distribution of color. Mohair skeins are two 25g balls joined into one 50g skein.

Superwash Yarns in Worsted/Aran will be a step up in pricing

Superwash yarns in DK, sport, and fingering will be a step up in pricing

Individual yarns will be priced according to the value/cost/composition of the yarn, and in some cases according to the amount of handling they require (ie. mohair).

I have a variety of yarns appropriate for socks, from machine washable worsted wool/nylon blends to DK, sport and fingering. Some of these are washable by machine, some by hand. And they come in a variety of qualities, from basic to luxurious.

Some of my sport/fingerings will be more appropriate for shawls and less appropriate for socks (I will indicate this when I post them).

Finally, I have a number of special yarns, luxury yarns, and mohair. Some really nice things from my stash and that I have bought through sales. I will make these available as I work on them.

I have a beautiful stock of yarns to dye, and I am adding to it all the time.





People have asked if my yarns are colorfast. YES! They really are. I have swatched and tested several of them. The Canadian Maple pictured below did not shed a bit of colour when I washed my swatch (and I really squeezed). The other day I dyed a ball of superwash very dark and threw it into the washing machine whole and unrinsed. It came out just as dark as when it went in there. Every now and then, a residual amount of colour may come out with a first washing, but this is residual rinse-out and not fading. And everyone knows it's just wise not to wash bright colours with light ones. Most of us have found out the hard way.



I have set up contest bags for the entries to my April 9 contest. If you want to know the details of the contest, click HERE.




Hope everyone had a nice weekend with happy knitting. Doug has been away in San Francisco the lucky dog, but he is coming home within the hour. I just know that one of the first things he will say will be a comment about the smell of vinegar and wet sheep.

10 comments:

Joan said...

Jayne, are you sticking with the Wilton's or maybe considering a commercial dye? I know that KP sells wool dyes but have no idea how they work.

I love the 100gm lots, does this mean you are splicing the smaller 50 gm HW & WA?

There is a gal in my VT knitters webring who sells handpainted local yarn (she is a spinner too) & they fly out as as soon as she lists them (like you) and I will email you her link so you can
what other long-timers are doing, enquiring minds and all. ;-)

Karen in Beautiful BC said...

I'm so glad your yarn sales are thriving! Dyeing is the best fun, especially when you are open to seeing what happens instead of planning meticulously. Your colour combos are absolutely beautiful. I love the Canadian Maple.

Two hints -if you get a colour combo you love, write down what dyes you used (I neglected to do this and now I'm sorry). Also, I wash my hands in Vim with bleach (just a little) followed by lots of hand lotion. I'm notorious for forgetting to put gloves on, but it makes your hands look human again. Probably not PC, but it works.

Keep up the good work!

jayne said...

Thanks Joan, I will enjoy seeing what your Vermont pal is doing. I really like the Wiltons. I don't even think of them as icing-dyes anymore. They are so much like working with watercolor paints, and I have learned some wonderful (and unexpected) combos. Time will tell if I stick with that system, but for now it's working out well, and the colours are very good.

I splice two 50's together neatly whenever the wool content will allow. KP sells Wool of Andes in 100g hanks (yay!). For all my other yarns, I generally join two balls together to get a big one (for sock yarns, and all). When it is superwash I just tie. I guess the advantage is the knitter will always know when they're halfway through the skein.

Thanks, Karen. The Canadian Maple is definitely my fave. I've made more, but a behind-the-scenes client keeps claiming it. I have drawn instructions for some of my favorites and starting to keep recipes too. But I really love to play and keep it loose when I don't have something particular in mind. I also take photos of the skeins as I do different things so that I can remember what I did. Especially helpful for special orders.

Yes, LOTS of hand lotion!

Madge said...

Mmm...vinegar and wet wool smell....

Jennifer said...

Great Job and Beautiful colors! I want it all......

Daryl said...

You color combos are right on target luscious. I got some of the Super kydd for dying also, but three months later just haven't gotten there. Your examples may kick me in the butt. LOVE that blueberry jam. You might want to try the Webs Berkshire too. We dyed some for the ballet dancers felted slippers and my kids noted that "it feels like the Malabrigo you like so much, Mommy". It didn't work too well for felted slippers, HAIRY, but would be lovely for scarves.

Jennifer said...

The blue bag is mine. Its a Web pattern that's a freebie if you order yarn. I just changed it a bit with the grommets. The bag I'm doing for Grace is with the red Rowan's summer tweed. Its the Shoulder Bag from Oat Couture from the Yarn Barn in Kansas. I think there is a picture of it on Grace's site.

I hope the yarn gets here today too...but I understand the wait. My inlaws live in Portland, Oregon. The mail is always slower from them to me than mine to them.

Happy Dyeing and Knitting!

Let me know if you need a different format for the card or if you need any changes. It gives me something to do.

jayne said...

Hi Daryl, thanks for your comment. I had one ball of that Webs Berkshire in my stash, and it's in the store as Green Attitude. It was kind of an acid green to begin with. Berkshire is great yarn, very soft. A bit hairy, you're right. I like the single-strand (like Malabrigo) characteristic.

Thank you so much for your generosity, Jennifer! I've emailed you.

Evelyn said...

Jayne....I love, love, love your yarns. I'm just waiting for the right one for me. I like the fact that you suggest what can be made with each skein. Sometimes it's hard to tell the gauge by a picture. As you may know, I mainly knit felted purses so I know there will be some for me very soon. You are quite the entrepreneur...way to go, and good luck with your venture.
Evelyn

jayne said...

Thanks, Evelyn!

Please don't hesitate to email if you have any specific questions, or if you want to request a colorway.