Friday, May 19, 2006

Dyeing & Carding Throwster’s Waste

My dyeing project didn’t turn out the way I had originally hoped. I wanted to blend several colors and had a number of ideas on how to do that. But, having made two long distance moves in 6 months and still not being able to find all my dyes and supplies proved to be a detriment. So I ended up choosing the simplest possible method: Easter egg dyes.

I chose four colors because four pint canning jars was all I could find. The 4-in-1 pot method worked well for the small amounts I wanted to dye.

Easy Easter egg dye dyeing.

After it dried, I cut the long strands into smaller pieces. I just took a guess as to how long to make them and cut off 1 to 2 inch size pieces. After working with them however, I would recommend 2 inches to be a good size.

Cutting the throwster's waste into more manageable pieces.

Next came carding. I used my cotton hand carders. When I first charged the card it looked like this:

Cotton carder loaded with dyed throwster's waste.

After about a bazillion passes, it begins to look like this:

It takes awhile, but the fibers eventually break down.

You can see the silk strands beginning to break down.

And the rolags look like this:

I wonder how this stuff will spin up.

I suppose I could have carded them until all the strands were completely broken down, but I wanted to leave at least some of them visible in the yarn for both visual and tactile texture.

I still have quite a bit left to card so it may take me awhile to finish it all.

While I’m doing that, I can contemplate whether or not I really like this color. Being a soft, muted color sort of person who occasionally goes in for jewel tones, this is a little too bubblegumish for my taste. However, I’ll reserve judgment until the yarn is spun, because after all, I can always overdye it! :)

To see the yarn this made, click here.

Related Posts:
Silk Throwster's Waste - about, & how to spin
Dyed Silk TW Yarn - how the dyed waste spun up


m said...

Leigh, you could always ply it with something more sober.

Peg said...

I love, love, love the color! If when you knit or weave with it, you can always use a more neutral color as your major color and use this for either a major or a minor accent. It's gorgeous!

Laritza said...

The color is beautiful. I don't quite understand why you cut it?......

Leigh said...

Laritza, I cut it to make the length more managable for blending. The TW fibers are pretty long. Not impossible to spin, but difficult to blend. I have to admit that the color came out better than I thought!

Anonymous said...

I only just found your posts on throwster's waste - thank you for this useful info, there's VERY little to be found on the web on how to handle this fibre! A small bag of this stuff has been given to me and you blog has given me the confidence to "dive in".