Dye Day 2020

I’ve been wanting to do some dyeing for a while, but it was only today that my plan came together.

I decided to dye a combination of yarn (Frank and Griff light fingerling two-ply) and locks (Felix and Esther) for use in the Alcott vest project and other blending fun.

Today’s colors are Abundant Earth Wool Tinctures Garnet and Malbec, and Gaywool Bushblends Cypress

Here’s my setup. I love my big steel pot.

And here are the results!

Was really pleased with how it all turned out- the Wool Tinctures went further than I expected, too. The packaging indicated that each packet should color 7 oz of wool, so I weighed everything carefully ahead of time to ensure that I’d could get maximum saturation. But I found that after my planned yarn and fleece batches there was still a bit of dye in the bath, and so I found some extras to exhaust it on- felt scraps and carded batts

So that was fun. But by the time I was finishing my third batch it was really heating up out there. Was glad I’d gotten an early start.

Time to follow the sheeps’ lead and head for the shade-


The Layton-ish sweater is delivered, and while I wasn’t able to be there for the initial try-on due to Covid concerns, I hear that it is a good fit! So I am really pleased (and relieved). You just never know until they slip it on!

So Layton is officially a done deal. And I’m still in prep mode for Alcott, spinning up more Griff and Frank yarn to use in the project. It’s coming along really well, but in the meantime, I needed to get something on the needles.

Thankfully, I have a fairly robust stash 🙂

There is a particular skein that had been calling to me. one that I picked up in La Conner when I was out on a field trip with my knitting peeps from work, back in Feb.

It’s an amazing melange- colorway is called Kandisnky, and I’ve cast on for a garter stitch cowl. Something simple that lets the colors be the main feature.

75% wool and 25% bamboo, and so it has a sheen that is a bit like silk. I’m finding it a pleasure to knit, just watching the way the colors play off each other.

In other news, hay was delivered on Friday!

It’s all put away in the woodshed now, and it smells awesome. 🙂 Hay makes me happy.

And all my efforts in the veggie garden are starting to (literally) bear fruit.

In addition to the raspberries and blueberries that we’ve always got this time of year, I’m harvesting carrots, potatoes, and snap peas. And zuchinni are on the way!

New Ewe Revue

Big news in the pasture this weekend!

Friday afternoon Matt, Jena and Elton from McIntrye Family Farm delivered Fiona (previously Harmony), a sweet little Icelandic ewe lamb with a lovely creamy fawn colored fleece.

Here she is meeting Ether, Dottie, Daphne and Felix

She cried for her mama a little bit the first evening, but since then she’s seemed to be settling in pretty well.

Here she is over by the shed with Felix and Dottie (because Felix, being a shy boy, doesn’t get that much exposure on the blog) 🙂

So excited about the new little girl, and to have creamy brownish tones back in my fleece palette.

And in project news- I’ve been busy doing some fine spinning for the Alcott vest. Lightest yarn that I think I’ve ever done. This Griff two-ply is coming in at about 115 yds/ oz

Hope to achieve a similar-weight two ply from Frank’s last fleece, which I’m hand carding.

I’d almost forgotten how much I like spinning from rolags.


I get a bit itchy when I don’t have anything on the needles, and so pretty much immediately after completing the Layton cuffs, I took a browse through my favorites on Ravelry, and was reminded of something I’ve wanted to make for a long time.

Alcott, by Mary Henderson. Mine just won’t be as pink.

I picked up some beautiful light fingerling weight yarn at Tolt yarn and wool a while back that should be perfect. Biches & Buches Le Petit Lambswool.

In the front there are two of my own spins that I’m hoping will be close enough in weight to be compatible in stranded colorwork. And I hope/plan to use a natural Griff (oatmeal colored) yarn of the same weight as the background color rather than white.

So I’ve got to rework the color charts for my vest- and I found something cool online that I wanted to share-

It’s web-based knitting design software- I’ve just started playing with it, but it’s pretty neat. here is a first attempt at recoloring the Alcott chart-

Also on the topic of Afterwards, I’m pleased that we’ve got July 4th in the rearview mirror. This one was particularly tough on the critters, with neighbors on both sides going all out on fireworks. I hung out with the sheep through the worst of it, as they seemed quite stressed.

Today everyone is tired, but enjoying some rose cuttings in the sunshine, so I guess we came through it ok.