Sunday, April 4, 2010

A Peaceful Interlude

Well, as you all might have guessed from the lack of new blog posts, the last week and a bit has been absolutely insane in my neck of the woods. I worked quite a lot, had the first major assignment due in my editing subject, and last but not least, one of my dearest friends got married. I am proud to say that during the ceremony, I got through my reading with only a few small, virtually imperceptible mistakes, and that's really no mean feat, considering the fact that I was reading from Dr Zeuss! Erm, bride's choice, not mine!

Anyway, the wedding went off wonderfully, the bride and groom had a lovely time, and now that they've departed on their honeymoon, I am house-sitting for them and tending to their two lovely cats.

The above kitty is Loki, and there's also a sweet ginger and white boy called Puck roaming around, trying to eat my yarn whenever I attempt knitting. Thankfully I worked yesterday and used the mighty power of my staff discount to purchase a dangly toy to distract them.

With cats distracted, I've been free to keep working on this hat! It's a Druidess Beret, and I'm a bit over halfway through it. I was a little hesitant to start work on a beret, because they tend to look absolutely terrible on me, but then I decided to throw caution to the wind. If it looks awful, I'll just give it away, but I'm hoping it won't come to that - this pattern looks like it can be worn as a beanie too if you just pull it down a little, and I have a better track record wearing beanies. At first I didn't think that the yarn had enough stitch definition to really make the cables pop properly, but it's looking a bit more promising as it grows. The problem was particularly pronounced in the bobbles, so I ditched the method specified in the pattern and adapted a tried and true technique instead, and they're looking much better now.

I also did a bit of yarn dyeing over the last week (I fitted it in somehow, though it did involve frantically rinsing the yellow hank out when I should have been prettying myself up for the wedding ceremony... oh well). As usual, I just used supermarket gathered food dyes, and my lazy take on these instructions for cold-pour technique dyeing. The blue had a few irksome white patches after its first encounter with the dye, so I tossed it back into my trusty dyeing saucepan and heated it in a weak dye solution for a while.

I'm really, really happy with how they came out. Every time I dye my own semi-solid yarn, I always wonder why I don't do it more often. And why everyone doesn't do it - it's so easy!

The above yarn is destined for a pair of warm, stripey socks to get me through winter. I deliberately dyed it as brightly as possible, as I think that come June I'll need the extra colour. Until June 14th that is, because that's the day I will be getting on a plane... On that note, I'm off to drink more tea, eat another English muffin, and do some travel plotting!


Abby said...

I'm interested to see how the beanie beret turns out. Looks lovely so far!

Your dying techniques are laudible - such vivid colors! And Seuss reciting at a wedding - there's something we don't all get to do.

Cadence said...

I love your hand dyed yarn! I've been really interested in starting to dye my own yarn, I've even bought some naked stuff to start with. Thanks for the further inspiration. Your beret is looking great!