Saturday, July 28, 2007

Fun in the Sun

It has been pretty hot here. Not as hot today as earlier in the week, but still hot enough to encourage me to stay inside. So, I decided to make the sun work for me.

Here are three skeins of Shimmer (70% Baby Alpaca, 30% Silk) from Knit Picks. I actually got it on eBay, and thought that it was all shades of blue, not blue/gray/white. I haven't been able to figure out what to do with it as is, because I really don't like the color. But today, while I spent hours steam cleaning carpets, I mulled over over-dyeing it with either red or yellow. I opted for red, as you can see. Black Cherry, actually.

Here's the new swift, btw. It arrived in today's mail, and handily wound the top skein in the photo above. (That's what the 5th dowel is for.) It works very well, and I would recommend one as a good swift for the price. It has only one coat of stain on it (the wood grain is still raised), so I'm thinking about staining it either dark cherry or near-black. I'm leaning toward the black. But, we'll see. (MS3 included for scale.) I might just need to buy another one in a larger size . . . we'll see how different skeins of yarn work on it. This swift has 24" arms. (That means they extend 12" from the center.)

Here's the yarn in a nice vinegar bath in the sink. This stuff had an astonishing amount of air in it. It floated like a cork, and had to be ever so gently pushed down and the air squeezed out against the bottom of the sink. It took quite a bit of persuasion before the stuff didn't want to float, and then even more before it was saturated.

And here it is, sitting comfortably in the dye bath. That's just one packet of Kool Aid in a 10 quart enamel stock pot. I might do another dye bath if this doesn't end up dark enough, but it looked awfully dark when I had it all mixed in. I shudder to think that I drank untold packets of this stuff back at school . . . I wonder what happened to all of that food dye . . .

And here is the dye pot, basking in the golden glow of the afternoon sun along with the Yarrow.

And here's what I've been taking blog photos with the last couple of days. It's very cool--the only thing it doesn't do better than my Olympus is zoom--and it's hard to beat a 10x optical zoom when you've only got 3.8x. But this baby starts up in less than a second, takes shots a whole lot faster, has a macro focus of just about an inch (opposed to the Oly's 3"), and has excellent battery life. I'm glad that Vern's sharing his new toy. (And that he doesn't take it to work! lol :o)

And now, we wait for the sun . . .