I spent yesterday watching the Inauguration, crying happy tears, and dyeing up some yarn. Why not? Inspiration was there and you have to grab it where you can! A couple days ago I posted some pictures of a newly dyed multi-colored Prineville base yarn and an Instagram friend asked what technique I had used. The blog seemed a great place to show the technique as I dyed up some of our freshly spun Shetland yarn yesterday. I learned this technique from watching a video with Sarah Eyre. It is so interesting watching, listening and learning from to other dyers.
I am using natural yarn (untreated with the superwash process) which adds an extra challenge to dyeing as it doesn't take up the dye as immediately or saturate as easily as treated wools do. I have noticed that with our well water, heat is a crucial factor in dyeing up my wools. The best saturation seems to take place at higher temperature points. So for this technique I placed the yarn in a citric acid/water mixture and brought the temperature up right away, then lowered it a bit for the dyeing process. A high level of citric acid in the water allows the yarn to take up the dye quickly which is necessary for this technique. Time for dye! I like to start with the color I really want to make sure stays in tact which for this yarn was the blue. I sporadically placed it about the 2 skeins of yarn and let it soak in for a minute.
I brought the heat back up and once it appeared most of the dye exhausted (meaning the yarn has pick up the dye so the water is clear) I individually pulled the skeins out of the water for a moment to examine and see if there were spots I'd like to fix. Once I'm happy I let the yarn heat for a few more minutes before turning off the heat.
Last step is to let the water cool completely before pulling the yarn out. Generally I leave it overnight.
So there you have it! These lovelies will be up in our shop on Friday! The multi-colored is called "Almost Eve" on our Shetland base yarn. The solid blue pictured up top is also on the Shetland base and is called "Moment of Silence."
Thank you as always for reading and supporting Ewethful!!! Please stay safe, wear a mask and take care of your fellow humans!
Back in the days when the shop and Mill space were open to shopping, classes and fiber group meet-ups, I had a list of "Rules." Don't panic, they were rules meant to help maintain a positive vibe and space for creativity.
The very first was "Please leave your politics outside our front door." The reason I made this rule was to maintain an open creative space that could serve as a break from what was going on outside. My goal was to welcome all people to the mill, regardless of political affiliations and beliefs, and to allow them to feel safe from being singled out or made to feel as if they didn't belong. For the most part this has worked although over the last 4 years I'll admit that if we all were on the same page politically, the conversations happened and they were fierce and sometimes tinged with a bit of fear.
If you've been following me on social media you likely have noticed by now that I have voiced my opinion on multiple issues over the last year. Why the shift? Why put my business at risk of losing clients? Especially in an industry that leans toward the conservative side? Well here's the thing, to me civil and human rights are not fundamentally political, they are the most basic of rights. It seems so simple but obviously not to all.
I believe that since I am using social media as a free platform to grow my business, I should also use it as a platform to voice equality and inclusivity for all. My business is a part of me and therefore my core values are a part of it. I have stopped supporting businesses that are touting what to me amounts to racism and/or support of a President who has given racism, hate, and now insurrection a loud voice in our country again. Ewethful has been and will continue to be about creativity, support, acceptance and respect. All of that said, racism and hate will never be tolerated within my business walls or on my social media pages. These core values will be added to the new "Rules" in the Mill.
Speak up. Step up. Vote and appreciate that our democracy is indeed fragile. Choose love not hate.
If you are still with my business, thank you!!! I appreciate you all so much!!!
Stay safe, for the love of all wear a mask because science is real and please take care of your fellow humans.
I am Kim Biegler, the owner and operator of Ewethful Fiber Farm & Mill. I create hand spinning fibers from locally sourced wool and teach others online how to hand spin their own yarn.