Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Free Knitting Pattern: Square Hat

I had some lovely pinky handspun yarn hanging around for a long time. I purchased it at the Montpelier Farmer's market a way long time ago. Janice and I uncovered it when she helped me organize my stash this year. It was the late summer and we were working toward completing some projects for Afghans for Afghans.  So I came up with this, perhaps a girl's hat. The white is my churro handspun in 2 ply.

Here is the pattern, for free


I love that 2 x 2 thing.  It may have started with my love of the Amish square  patch quilt.  Here is one that I asked a friend to do,  a number of years ago. I knit her son a sweater (blue, raglan pullover) to swap.  I bought the Amish inspired fabric long long ago in New York...Kind of a circular thing as that friend grew up in Vermont....!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Goldenrod Dye Day

I had been waiting for the goldenrod to bloom. Goldenrod ( solidago altissimamakes the best dye when used fresh. I thought that goldenrod optimal bloom day here in the Low Country might be toward the end of September.  I was wrong: I then had to put it off until a week when the blooms were open  first weekend in October. That said, the 2nd weekend in October might work better..

Here is an article with lots of information about goldenrod which can apparently also be used for tea. 

I was thinking that I would use the goldenrod growing around my house, but after I guessed a recipe (figuring kind of equal weights of goldenrod blooms and yarn-to-be-dyed), I realized that there would not be enough.

Well, there's more than what is pictured above, but I realized that I would need A LOT MORE
so  I went foraging. Under the power lines seemed fruitful.  

In total I had 19 ounces of goldenrod blooms.   I decided to be expedient and put the blooms, yah, in the Cuisinart 

Then I made a dye stock and simmered it for 2 hours, then filtered out the "spent" blooms, It was fragrant and I might even drink a goldenrod tea sometime...

The "before" yarn:

was simmered for an hour in my standard alum mordant bath, then left to cool...then simmered in the dye stock for 2 hours then left to cool.  Here are the results:

Actually these are reversed, the green one above is the blueish one in the prior photo. The very pink one is not pictured in the lower photo.

So interesting to figure what plants might have colored one's ancestor's clothes...