Pink Monkey Knits

Using my opposable thumbs to knit up a storm!

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Marking the Occasion 

Cobra and I had a lovely pajama and cleaning day today. Lots of watching PBS and even scrubbing the bathroom. Overall, very relaxing.

But don't think it was all chill. There are big events going on in DC tonight.

That's right, I'm talking about the celebration of day four of Project Spectrum Purple month!

There was no better way for me to inaugurate the month on Saturday than with a little purple Kool-Aid dyeing. I've actually done this kind of dyeing before at a fun party for it at my friend Eric's house (but I didn't blog about it, woops). During that party, I attempted to do some tonal dying of two skeins of alpaca sportweight I received in trade with Laura. It, uh, didn't turn out super well.

Here, you can see that the color really only came into about half of the skeins and probably would have looked strange knitted up. It was like a lightbulb went off in my brain when I realized that I could overdye the yarn and get the effect I desired!

I mixed about 1 1/2 large packets of purple and some of a pack of tropical punch to add an extra tone to the color. After I got it cooking up, I added extra water, put the yarn in, and added more to cover.

I then took the remainder of the grape packet and sprinkled it randomly over the yarn. This was in hopes of adding some speckles or darker areas of color, increasing the color interest in the yarn. I let the powder sit for a moment, then stirred up the whole rigmarole.

I was half watching some World Cup action and was sad when France beat Brasil.

The yarn simmered, doing its usual amazing feat of soaking up all of the color and leaving clear water behind. It never ceases to amaze me. Since Cobra was working at the time, I pulled out some of the water to show him this amazing trick. I was outside hanging the yarn out to dry when he came home, but he said that the pungent, fake fruit and wet wool smell in the kitchen immediately tipped him off.

After drying, Voila, my finished product! To me, this dye job is the epitome of a Project Spectrum craft because I was trying to being depth, richness and variety of color with the cheapest, simplest medium I could find. As you can see, the tone ranges from dark violet to an almost pink tone and has even maintained a bit of its grey sheen. I'm very pleased with the end result, so I'd mostly say it's a success.

I plan to pick up this yarn later in the month and start some Falling Leaves socks. I also have two other purple projects planned to mark this month: a purple Newsboy Cap from Stitch n Bitch Nation as a gift for my sister-in-law and a wee purple vest for Afghans for Afghans. Of course, I'm now rounding the final stretch on my Blue Windex (on the ribbing, yes!) so that will be finished before I move on to the next.

What's that you say, there's another celebration going on in DC today? An event bigger than Project Spectrum?

I haven't heard a thing about it.