Fractal Danger


After seeing Mel’s handspun Fractal Danger, I immediately dove into my stash for suitable yarn. I came up with the 2 ply Rainbow Farms Pygora yarn I spun up over a year ago. (Top skein of the bottom photo) I have to say, this yarn is really really yummy. I had to rip out the first few inches of the scarf several times until I found the right needle size for a fabric I liked. This yarn just got better and better as if bloomed. Needless to say, it handled the ripping very well. You can see the area that I re-knit several times in the small elongated triangle to the above right of the yarn ball.

Tennis Socks

Remember when I was on a kick to knit my own tennis socks and fine tune the sock recipe? Yeah, it was fun. They wore really well. This summer, I wanted to make more.

Guess what? What I wrote on the blog was the extent of my notes on the recipes. Seriously. That’s it. At least I had the blog to refer back to, I guess, or I’d have nothing. Nothing.


This time, I’m making notes. There was a lot of ripping as I reconstructed the rolled rims. Hopefully, I won’t lose these notes.

These socks are slightly different from the first set because I’m using fishy lips heels. That has become my favorite short row heel construction method.

More on Indigo

If you go back and look at the color chart I posted yesterday, my favorite green is the indigo overdyed with osage orange. The result is a very clear green (left stripe, second square from the bottom in each strip) compared to the osage orange overdyed with indigo (top left square in each strip).

Now, this next bit is hearsay … I’ve heard it in some natural dye classes but have not been able to confirm this from internet nor book research (from my personal natural dye library of 4-5 books). Please take this with a grain of salt and drop me a note with references if you have more information one way or the other.

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to apply the indigo first, osage orange second at this weekend’s workshop. Indigo doesn’t bond to the fiber the same way that typical natural dye does. The indigo pigment actually nestles into the fiber rather than chemically bonds to the fiber. This is why your jeans, if truly indigo dyed, will fade in creases. That is where the pigment rubs off.

Anyway, what this means is that indigo can be released again in another dye pot, thus alter the dye pot for everyone else in the class. We were advised not to try this unless it is at the very end of the workshop. However, that means the dye may be exhausted and I wouldn’t be able to get accurate medium on medium dye strength.

I might try this myself at home to see what the color variations might be with indigo last vs. indigo first.



Next weekend, I will be taking a workshop on natural dyes with Anni Redding. She will show us dyes using cochineal and osage orange in 3 different depths of shade: light, medium and dark. I plan to dye the squares I’ve woven with the Zoom Loom a while back.

Since I plan to overdye some of the samples, if time allows, I wanted to get an idea of what the colors might look like.

Since overdying is similar to glazing technique with watercolors, I pulled out 3 colors that are close to the cochineal (quinacridone magenta), osage orange (nickel azo yellow), and indigo (phthalo blue – green shade). I painted 3 strips in varying depths of shade and glazed over them with additional colors.

Bottom up:

  • 1st row/square: colors as is
  • 2nd set of 3 rows/squares: glazed with yellow first, then red over 2, then blue over last
  • 3rd set of 3 rows/squares: glazed over with red first, then red over 2, then blue over last

I pooped out over the darkest shade so they are not correct, but you get the idea. The order in which the glaze is applied does make a difference to the colors.

Anyway, fun coloring exercise. Let’s see how they turn out with dyes.