Peter Kagan and the Wind


In my heart, I’ll call this yarn Peter Kagan & the Wind, but considering that name is already taken, here is North Sea on shetland wool. I find shetland challenging to dye because the damp yarn has a halo  ( aka fuzz ) makes it hard to tell what the final color will look like when dry.   This is about 70% dry and coming up much more nicely than I deserve considering that I was seat of the pantsing things.


These were snow dyed using less snow that I should have.  I added a 1/4 c of water part way through.    The next time I do this, I will pack the snow more firmly or add ice cubes to the snow to get that extra bit of water.

The dyeing technique was very straightforward.  I soaked the yarn for a long while in water with vinegar.  Then I put the yarn in a turkey roasting pan and filled the pan with snow.  I sprinkled green, blue, black and silver dyes lightly over the snow.  I spread the silver evenly, then put blue and green pockets and a few areas of black.  On top, I spread another layer of silver. In all, I used about 1.5 teaspoons of dye split across 6 different colors.  About 40 minutes in, I was running low on moisture in the pan, so I added a 1/4 c. water.  I also sprinkled a bit of water on the bare areas to increase the dye wicking into the drier fiber. For the last 10 minutes of dyeing, I rocked the pan and washed all of the yarn in the blended dyes to do a quick overdye.

I don’t time how long the yarn takes to cook anymore.  I put the oven temperature at 300 degrees, cover the pan with foil and then leave it until my temperature probe hits the desired number.  Once it hits the goal temperature, I drop the temperature to 225-250F depending upon the goal temperature and leave it alone.

I brought this yarn up to 180F with hopes of separating the black.  I probably should have gone up to 200, but I did get the look I wanted.  The black broke into blue and a very dark green in places.

Once I had the yarn up to temperature and the oven reset to 225F, I cooked the yarn for 15- 20 minutes with the internal yarn temp hanging out around 170ish.  Then I did the 10 minute overdye by rocking the pan and adding a bit more water and letting it cook for another 10 minutes.  After that, I poured off the excess dye because I didn’t want the overdye to wash out the snow effect.

I let the yarn rest in the sink.  When it cooled, I rinsed out the excess dye and hung the skeins to dry.

Which lasted for about 10 minutes when I started playing with them, looking at the colors.  Waiting for yarn to dry is the hardest part of dyeing.

Bonus for today: I didn’t spill anything or set anything on fire.  Any dyeing day that doesn’t warrant a call for hazmat clean up is a good one!


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