Monday, July 19, 2010

Oakland Dye Day Party

Yesterday The Oakland, Oregon First Sunday Spinners group combined with the Friday Library Knitters group at Valerie's beautiful house to have a dyeing party. We spent all day dyeing, laughing and browsing (pot luck).

Most people brought yarn or fiber to spin, but Jana surprised us with a whole box of Opal sock yarn to overdye. You can see the original yarn colors have white in the yarn. These are some of the skeins of Opal sock yarn that I overdyed with blue, green, red and purple. It totally changes the look of the yarn.

This yarn was yellow and brown (not my favorite colors) before I overdyed it with red.

Some people knit their socks first before overdyeing them.

This is the huge kettle we soaked the fiber in before it was dyed.

It held a ton of yarn.

We used only the basic colors: red, yellow, blue, orange, green and purple, so I decide against my original plan of using my vacation pictures as inspiration for my choice of dye colors. I'll save that project to work on at home.

We had several choices of heat to set the dye. There was a turkey roaster that I used to steam my plastic wrapped fiber and yarn.

Other people used a microwave or one of these crockpots.

This is Nancy checking on her Opal Sock yarn being overdyed with red.

Elaine's colorful yarn is still hot from the microwave.

We decorated Valerie's yard by hanging our dyed fiber and yarn up to drip-dry.

She had a canopy for to shade us and the yummy pot luck dishes.

Of course the canopy provided another prime location for hanging up more fiber.

Everyone agreed that if there was a prize, we would have awarded it to Bernice for the beautiful cashmere sweater she found at a thrift store for $2. She used rubber bands and tie-dye technique to turn a boring beige men's sweater into a rose covered work of art.

She gets to shop for buttons next. We can't wait to see her model it.

I couldn't decide which colors to use for this fiber, so I used them all.

Then I tried to be more conservative and used only blue and green.

This one used all of the colors of dye, but they didn't look bright enough so I soaked the fiber in walnut husks. I still don't like it so I'll work on it more later.

When we were done, Valerie had some interesting new towels to add to her rag collection. Someone even kept all of the dye-stained paper towels to use as gift wrap because they were too pretty to throw away.

After I got home my husband and my son helped me wind the sock yarn onto the ball winder.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Fiber Colors Inspiration

My husband and I went on a vacation to Otter Crest on the central coast of Oregon. While I was looking at the photos from the trip I decided to use them as inspiration for color combinations to dye fiber for yarn spinning and needle felting projects.

I'm going to use a program on the website at to capture the colors onto a palette and then dye the yarn at a fiber dyeing party at my Oakland First Sunday Spinners Group meeting.

This is a view from the deck of our room at The Inn at Otter Crest. We had a beautiful sunset on our first night.
There were some fun touristy shops at the nearby town of Depoe Bay. I liked the colors in several of these vases.

I'll capture the red, orange, purple and gold from this dragon.

There are a lot of cool blue, green and lavender colors in this photo.
The black colors will make a dramatic contrast to the coral and gold colors for this yarn.

This is a picture of Depoe Bay taken right across the street from all of the shops. A sea wall follows the whole length of the street.

We'll see how many of these color palettes I'll be able to use at my dyeing party tomorrow.