Spartickes Dyes: February 2014

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Happy Groundhog's Day!!!

Today is such a special day for me because I've been planning and plotting for months preparing for the Groundhog's Day club shipment.  All but 3 of the club participants have their yarn, and I want to reveal the finished product for y'all.

Here is a behind the scenes look at the dye process.  I'm so fortunate to be able to play with this yarny goodness everyday.  Thank you so much for your support because this couldn't be my life if it weren't for y'all.

This month's pattern is called Shadow Scout and was designed by Megan Williams (justrunknit) of The Stockinette Zombies.   
When Megan first said that she would design a pattern for me, I was over the moon because she has such amazing designs!  I love that she picked Groundhog's Day instead of Valentines Day-it just shows how great she is at thinking outside of the box!  I let Megan pick the colors-brown and purple.  I wanted to give it a little more pop than just the two colors, and when she said "double seed stitch," I knew exactly what the naked yarn wanted to be!  Here are a few behind the scenes pictures from my "secret room" where all the magic happens.

It starts with a paper towel.  I like to mix the dye then tweak the colors.  I then put them in squirt bottles and rearrange the dye on a paper towel.  This gives me an idea of what the yarn will look like.  I put it in a circle since the color on the yarn will repeat itself and I want to get a better idea of how each color flows.

While I'm playing with dye, I soak the naked yarn in this big bucket.  I usually let the yarn soak for at least an hour.  Soaking the yarn helps it to take the dye better.  

I can't believe I'm showing you this mess!  Here is a picture half-way through the club lot.  My secret room is actually the storage room beyond the bathroom--the water heater room!  I have a two burner hotplate set up so I can dye two pots at a time.  

Here is what it looks like while it is dyeing.  
I dyed both of club skeins at the same time, in side by side pots. I was careful to make sure that they stayed together through the whole process--they were like sisters!  

After they leave the hot pot, I let them set and cool down.  I then soak them in water to make sure there isn't any excess dye.  I also put SOAK in to make it smell a little better. :)

I forgot to take a picture of them drying, so I'll try to get one of those for next time.  Here is one skein, ready to be reskeined and packaged up.

Half-way through the re-skeining process

 Final product!

And, here is the awesome pattern that Megan made to accompany it.  It has optional earflaps!!