Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Sweater to dye for...

I've been dyeing yesterday. *^v^*

(doesn't it look like a proper witch's cauldron? *^v^*)

No, unfortunately not my plaid fabric for the cape, because I thought about it and it's 100% wool, so it may shrink or felt badly while being in a piping hot water for an hour. I decided that it may stay as it is, and I may add some violet accessories, like a brooch or buttons.
I was dyeing two sweaters my mom knitted for me a long time ago (sorry, mom!...), because they were the wrong shape (red potato sack...) or colour and shape (dark blue boxy square lacy potato sack with butterflies, well...). I have some nice sweaters that my mom made for me, but she often doesn't ask about my chosen design and she chooses it herself, along with the yarn...

Anyway, I decided that either I do something with the yarn or they should go, because I don't have a space in my tiny flat for any unwanted sweaters!
So, I prepared the violet dye and processed both of them for an hour, together with some pieces of other yarns from my stash that I wanted to dye but to test first.

Here are the results:

Exhibit A: bright red sweater of unknown yarn (soft and a bit fuzzy) - the result is a nice dark red (darker than in this photo), which I'm going to turn into some nice sweater. ^^

Exhibit B: dark blue sweater of unknown yarn (probably acrylic blend, soft) - no, it's not even worth photographing, it didn't change at all... Well, bye bye!

Exhibit C: a piece of orange cotton - not too bad, but the result is a very dark violet, I may try to dye it with amaranth dye.

Exhibit D: a piece of mix green cotton - it turned out violet with some lighter spots where the lighter threads were, not too bad, considering the previous colour - light green with yellow and pink spots... But it's very coarse after a hot bath, not scratchy but looks very ragged, hm...

Exhibit E: a piece of mix fuchsia cotton - that's the best result! nice violet, not too dark, even colour, but it was light fuchsia at the beginning, so I could expect this. ^^ Although it's the same yarn as the green one above, it stayed soft.

Exhibit F: a piece of brown wool - turned out almost black,well... I'm not going to be dyeing this, either. I believe I'll just sell the yarn at the on-line auction and buy myself something else. The red spots you can see remained under a knot and didn't catch that much dye (which is a pity the whole piece of this yarn didn't turn like this, really...)

I've seen many sweaters that I really liked but there are a few that grabbed my heart and I thought that I really really must knit them, or else I'd burst like a bubble!...
Purple Belle was the first one like that, and here is the second one that I'm definitely going to knit: Kimono Styled Sweater from the old pattern by KnitPicks.

I don't have the pattern but that's not a problem - I have both of those cables in my "200 Aran Designs" book, I can measure myself and do some swatching, and I've already started to plan the knitting, with as little sewing as possible. ^^

One thing I really don't like about it (apart from the gray colour, but that's obvious in my case! ^^), is the yarn that was used here - I can see this sweater only in some light, soft, luster silk (which I cannot buy in Poland, bleh...), linen or mercerized cotton, not wool. I've seen some other knitters' versions on the Web and I just don't feel it in wool. But that's just me. *^v^*

Today's SFTC is not about cooking a specific meal, but about the ingredient that I find necessary in most soups: celery leaves.

And I'm not talking about the fancy schmancy leaf celery (Apium graveolens var. dulce), I'm talking about the ordinary root celery (Apium graveolens var. rapaceum). Now is the best time in Poland to harvest them, and whereas the root is very delicious and can be eaten in many ways, the leaves are also very important (this vegetable is also veeeeeery cheap and full of vitamins, mind you! ^^).
Add a small twig at the beginning of cooking your tomato soup or broth and you will enjoy an immensely great taste and smell when eating the cooked meal!

They can be frozen for later and I tend to prepare a batch for all my late Autumn/Winter soups so we can enjoy this extraordinary taste when there is rain and snow outside! *^v^*
Look at this bags - I have ten twigs ready to go to the freezer, which means ten delicious soups over the cold months, out of only one celery! *^v^*

Now I'm off to frog the red sweater, and later we are having dinner with my friend Anna - I'm cooking a leek tart. ^^
Happy Wednesday! *^v^*


  1. This sweater looks really lovely and must be gorgeous in silk!
    love the purple color of yarns!

  2. :) Sounds like you had a fun day experimenting with your dyeing. And it really does look like a witch's cauldron with all that steam-like straight out of Macbeth :)

  3. what vegetable is PORA? is that leek or celery?

  4. POR is a leek. Celery is SELER.

  5. The dying was interesting - especially the one that didn't change at all - hmmm --

    I wouldn't think to freeze the celery leaves - thanks - today for me was beet day - I got some from a friend today and roasted them and we will eat them for days - I Love Beets!!

    I also got some zucchini from them small and HUGE those will probably become zucchini bread tomorrow. And I also grated some up into a meatloaf to send over to Mother-in-law (trying to get better food into her and more veggies - but at 91 it is hard)

  6. Wow! I hope to be brave enough to dye one day! At least the kool-aid :op

  7. thanks for the encouragement - I still say I suck and I think I have to rip it out again -- this time I will use a lifeline so at least I can get it back to a purl row -- somewhere it took a wrong turn I think -- I am not going to look at it until tomorrow though to double check.