Rhymes With Fuchsia

Friday, September 22, 2006


Do you remember the gift fleece, the one full of hay? Ruth, having come through like a trouper on Patriot's Day, was roped into volunteered to help out with another Colonial-era-related event and suggested that we could spin again (like we did last summer, er, spring). As it turned out, though, the organizers did want textile arts, but they wanted different ones, variety being the spice of life, so Ruth came up with having the kids make felt balls. "But I'm trying to figure out where we can get fleece," she said.

"Not to worry!" said I. "Remember all that fleece I acquired last winter? I'll just wash and card some of it for you."

"But plain white felt balls would be so boring," she said.

"Not to worry!" I reiterated. "I have lots of leftovers from Dye-O-Rama."

I figured I'd card and dye about a pound of fleece for her, little knowing that a pound turns out to seem like, oh, five or six metric tons if you're carding it by hand, picking VM out of it as you go. Nonetheless, I persevered with the process. Ruth requested bold, androgynous colors, so a nice bright green was first on the list. I mixed the dye, winging it, as I didn't know exactly what proportions would produce the green I had in mind, and poured in the boiling water. "A bit too yellow," I said, and added a little blue. A little more than necessary, as it turned out, as I got a spotty blue-green mixture — I had already noticed that mixed colors of this dye tend to separate somewhat, not such a big deal if you're handpainting, but I was looking for a uniform green. Shushing my inner perfectionist, I rinsed it out and hung it up to dry.

I really like this color mix; I'd like to card it again (yes, I really would) to blend the shades and then spin up a storm.

Maybe it'll rain and no one will show up.


  • Hey, the colors came out great! It's got an abalone coloring, without the iridescent shimmer. I'm SURE that will spin and knit up beautifully.

    By Anonymous Dave Daniels, at 7:07 AM  

  • I was going to say that's definitely sea colors, Dave hit it right on the nose. The kiddos might find more interest in the mixed colors than a plain solid. I hope the felting goes well!

    By Blogger Julie, at 7:45 AM  

  • That is a lot of green fluff.

    By Blogger trek, at 8:07 AM  

  • Isn't it astounding how free fleece just keeps giving? Let the kids mix the green and white according to their own whims and make unique felt balls. Maybe card a little white and green together for heathered yarn. Take the carders and some fleece with you. Touirists find the whole process fascinating.

    And watch the kidlets as they watch you spin. I noticed that 90% of the little girls watched my hands, and 90% of the little boys watched the wheel.

    By Blogger Roxie, at 9:48 AM  

  • I love the colors. I don't know that I would card it together. I might just leave the hunks as they are and randomly spin them together to get a somewhat varigated look to the yarn...

    By Anonymous Kris, at 10:58 AM  

  • I'm sad to think of that gorgeous ocean-colored fleece becoming felted balls. It looks to me like it would rather be lace. ;-) So I too will hope for rain!

    By Blogger Beth S., at 12:10 PM  

  • I really like that color, and carding it to mix is a great idea! Handprocessing, gotta love it. Takes SOOOO much time.

    By Anonymous Laurie, at 9:18 AM  

  • I love the colors! It should be perfect for felting.

    By Anonymous witchypoo, at 4:11 PM  

  • It's really beautiful and should spin up into a fun yarn.

    By Blogger margene, at 6:25 PM  

  • I love the colors and I'm sure the kids will like the variegation. It actually reminds me of a kit I saw somewhere to make a felted ball planet Earth...

    By Blogger Jena the yarn harpy, at 8:27 AM  

  • Oh my that looks like a lot of work!
    But the colors are really pretty.

    By Blogger Ana, at 10:36 PM  

  • Ooh, I like the color too! Here's hoping you get to keep soem of it!

    By Anonymous Cheryl, at 10:23 AM  

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