It began to snow yesterday afternoon about 1pm and quickly began to fall so thickly that there was limited visibility and traffic in front of the house slowed to a crawl. DH decided that no one would show up for coffee, so he stayed home. Now…what to do on a snowy afternoon with DH at home?
Why… dye the Merino wool that has been sitting patiently in my yarn basket for the last month or so!
My sweet DH filled a huge pan with water and set it on the stove for me. After turning the heat to medium (don’t want it to come to a boil!) I inserted the 2ply Merino. After about 30 minutes or so, I mixed 2 pkgs. of grape Kool Aid and 2 pkgs. of raspberry Kool Aid in a cup with some water, then added this to the water and yarn that was just below simmering on the stove. After about 20 to 30 minutes of heat on the stove…never allowing it come to the boiling point… the water turned completely clear and the dying was complete. The photo at left shows the spoon with completely clear water in it. The color has all been taken up into the yarn. I turned the water off and left everything to set and cool. (Just ignore the time/date stamp on the photos… I forgot to change them after leap year February, so they are a month and 2 days off…sigh!)
Within about 20 minutes, the water had cooled just enough that it was touchable. DH lifted the pan and set it in the sink for me. I began to slowly add bits of cold water…never enough to make a rapid change of temperature on the yarn. After a bit, I added just a touch of Downy and continued to swish the water and add bits more cold water…continuing with the addition of cool water and swishing until the yarn is cool enough to handle.
Lifting the yarn out by the individual skein, I squeeze the yarn gently to remove as much water as I can, then lay the skein onto a lengthwise folded towel and roll up to remove even more water. As each skein is dried as much as possible with the towel, it is hung onto a hanger and placed over the bathtub on the shower curtain rod.
This morning they are almost completely dry, so I will be rolling them into balls a little later today. This is without a doubt the softest yarn that I have spun yet. I complained a lot during the spinning, but you can bet I won’t complain any more!