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Sunday, 11 August 2013

Yarn Dyeing: The First Attempt

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A few years ago I bought some hideous neon green virgin wool from an estate sale. It seemed like a good deal at the time ($0.50 a skein!) and the vintage label (which of course I don't seem to have kept) appealed to me. This was old yarn! And unused yarn! I can save this yarn and give it purpose.

Skip at least two years and one baby, and yeah... no purpose was found. So this afternoon I decided to get off my butt, hand the baby toddler to his father and dye this yarn into acceptability. Perhaps not being completely hideous will help it find it's way.

For reference: I followed Maiya Mahem's Kool Aid Dyeing 101. It's very easy: soak the yarn, heat water on the stove, add dye, leave yarn until it's soaked in colour, squeeze out water, leave to dry. I also received valuable guidance on prepping the yarn from my knitting wizard elizarde. The helpers on the internet, they are the best.

OK, so first I used two packs of Cherry and one Orange Kool-Aid. This was the result:

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Not as saturated as I would have liked, but I was dying over an existing colour, so it was to be expected. Definitely more useable than neon green.

Then I moved onto Kroger food coloring. This is a liberal application of blue:

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Much better. In fact, this is really awesome! I love this colour! I especially like the variation food coloring provides, you seem to have greater control over how the colour spreads across the hank.

So I went all daring and did a combination of green, yellow and red. The yellow turned the neon green towards celery, the green saturated the neon and the red might just be there because I realised there were undyed parts still showing. But it looks marvellous:

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It took most of the afternoon to air dry (I think I should have squeezed it out more), but this was otherwise a quick and easy project that gave me new yarn without much effort. Kool-Aid is cheap, food coloring is about $4 a box and with the right care, the colours shouldn't fade much over time. Definitely going to do this again - I have undyed hanks AND RIT dye in my stash. Who knows what could happen.

Friday, 29 March 2013

Thrifting in the Bay Area

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[top to bottom: 1) Spice Stack spice rack, retail $24.99/bought for $7.99 | 2) yarn bowls $2.50 each | 3) studio pottery $2.50 | 4) plethora of kid's clothes, size 18 months+, ranging from $1-3 each | 5) plethora of kid's toys & books from $1-6 each) | 6) sewing patterns, $0.99 each | 7) fantasy/sci fi books $2 each]

While up in the Bay Area for Chinese New Year, I did a spot of thrifting. And by "a spot" I mean I found two really great thrift stores (this Goodwill and this Savers and spent over $100 on ALL THE THINGS. And not all the things I bought are pictured here, because time has already moved them into use (cardigan! t-shirts! A basket!) and also I can't be bothered. Despite the amount I spent, I'm pretty happy with the outcome - I stocked up on clothes and future toys for my rapidly growing giant baby, and found a few bits and pieces for myself along the way. Storage space ain't cheap, but it's a lot cheaper than buying things retail, that's for sure.

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Chinese New Year 2013

Posted using Mobypicture.com

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Not many actual Chinese New Year visuals there - it was a pretty busy trip and I tried to get the most out of it. And funnily enough, driving that kind of distance with a 6 month old in a stuffed to the gills car is a really really bad idea. I don't recommend it. It's far easier to fly or wait until their older.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

2013.01.12 Santee Swap Meet Scores

2013.01.12 Santee Swap Meet Scores

[Clockwise: 2 ridiculously heavy brass (?) swan head book ends $20 | toy emergency vehicles $1 each | baby alpaca cardigan (with bonus weird smell before I washed it) $0.50, Gymboree overalls $1, Winnie the Pooh sleepers $1 each | Big Trouble in Little China DVD $1, power cable for NES $1 ]

Total spent: $27.50, not including egg rolls at the food truck.

More info about the Santee Swap Meet here.

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Thrift Haul 12/21/2012

Thrift Haul 12/21/2012

Thrift Haul 12/21/2012

[Top image: "Circus McGurkus 123!" - Dr Seuss | "You're Only Old Once!" - Dr Seuss | Cheer Up Little Duck! - Ronnie Randall/Caroline Church | Mr Jeremy Fisher bath book - Beatrix Potter | "Wally Whale and his friends" by Pam Adams/Annie Kubler]

[Bottom image: one large world map | one medium sized K12 world tectonic plates map | "Atlas of American History" - Rand McNally/Houghton Mifflin | 1972 copy of Spinnerin knitting booklet]

Total: $6.91!