Monday, July 25

Monday Update

So I finally finished the custom shawl I've been working on last week - it looks great! I hope the nice lady who ordered it will love it as much as I do. I knitted the shawl based on one of my own knitting patterns available on Ravelry. I used hand dyed merino/angora yarn.

I've also started working on another project (I know, I'm crazy.... but I can't just sit and do nothing). It's a next shawl, this time knitted with 2 different colors - olive green and dusty blue. The yarn was also hand dyed by me and this idea for a shawl was in the back of my mind for last couple of months.

Sunday, July 24

New packaging for MadelinesWardorbe shawls

To cut on the shipping costs, I decided to change a bit the way I pack the shawls before shipping - I use standard white envelopes, a rubber stamp I made by myself some time ago and the yarn the shawl inside the envelope was knitted with.

I use various colors of ink to stamp the envelopes - I think they look quite cute :-)

Saturday, July 23

On the needles

Today, I have a lovely custom ordered shawl on my needles. I hand dyed the yarn by myself and the customer really likes it (yay!). The color is quite difficult to describe, one time it looks like rose pink, the other - like peach.

That's the yarn before:

And that how it looks on my needles:

I'm using one of my own patterns - Addi Rectangular Shawl available on Ravelry for $5.

Tuesday, July 19

A bit of brown and purple

I just finished these lovely shawls last week - had no time to publish new posts as I've been quite busy with custom orders. I'm working on 2 custom pieces - one for a bride and other one for a groom's mother. How cool is that?

The Purple One
I knitted it using one of my favourite fiber blends, 80/20 merino/alpaca, hand dyed in lovely lavender violet.
You can find it in my MadelinesWardrobe Etsy shop.

The Brown One
This one was knitted using very soft yarn, 70/30 merino/cashmere, in lovely chocolate brown shade. The design is my own. The shawl also available at MadelinesWardrobe shop

Sunday, July 10

Dyeing yarn with food coloring

I was always curious if the food coloring really can dye yarn... It definitely can!  I bought red, blue and yellow food coloring at local grocery store a couple of weeks ago and couldn't wait to try them out. 

All you need  do dye your yarn are food coloring (liquid or paste), vinegar, water & a large pot. You can use any pot you normally use for cooking because the food colorings are not toxic.

The food coloring + vinegar mixture will dye almost all animal fibers.

You need your yarn to be in a loosely tied skein. Fill a large bowl with a lukewarm water and put the skein inside, making sure it's fully covered by water (you can put a small plate on top of it so it'll press the yarn down). Leave it soaking for 30 minutes.

Prepare dyes:
To prepare your food dye, you need hot water, a large cup an food coloring in a color you want. You can always mix different colors (color theory - yellow + blue = green, yellow + red = orange, red + blue = purple etc......).

Remember to wear gloves and an apron or old t-shirt. The food coloring can dye your fingers as well :-)

Fill the cup with hot water and add the food coloring a (you don't have to add much) - you can test the color by dipping a piece of paper towel in the mix.

The fun begins!
Fill the pot with a lukewarm water and add the dye mixture. Take the yarn out of the bowl and slightly squeeze to remove exceed water. Now, put the skein in the pot and gently stir it with a plastic/metal spoon to be sure it's fully soaked with the dye solution.

Now bring the content of the pot to shimmer for 15 minutes, don't allow it to boil. Try to move the yarn as little as possible - if you rub or move it too much it could felt. 

After 15 minutes of shimmering, it's time to add vinegar - it "opens" the yarn and helps it absorb the color making it solid. You will need approx. half of a cup of vinegar - add it to the pot trying not to pour it directly at the yarn. Delicately stir the solution and move the yarn around.

Bring almost to boil and then back to shimmer, let it shimmer for 30 minutes. You will notice that the water gets clearer with every minute. 

After 30 minutes, put the pot aside and let its content to cool to room temperature. When it's done, rinse the yarn with lukewarm water, gently squeeze and hang it in to dry, making sure it's not in the direct sun.

And VOILA! You have your yarn dyed the color you wanted!

Saturday, July 9

Coffee + knitting = perfect lazy Saturday morning

I woke up quite early today and decided to start Saturday the most lazies and nicest way - sipping delicious hazelnut coffee and working on my new shawl.... Mohair is such a nice yarn to work with (unless you have to unravel 5 rows of your project, 350 stitches a row.......) and when it's 75/25 mohair/silk - I'm in heaven!

I've started the shawl yesterday morning before going to work (yay for waking up at 6am....) and it looked like this:

I'm using KidSilk Aura yarn in beautiful dusty blue shade. I just hope that the 5 skeins I bought will be enough to finish the shawl!

And here are my latest addition to the stash - oh my, it's growing fast! I'm still waiting for some yarn I ordered last week. I just wish I could have 8 hands and knit faster :-)

Friday, July 8

Work in Progress 2: lovely mittens and lavender shawl

Last weekend I decided to play a bit with a new type of project - fingerless mittens in a lovely shade of grey. Still haven't decided if I want to keep them for myself or list them in my shop.

And here comes another of my WIPs - a lovely lavender shawl, half done.

Thursday, July 7

New shawl is added to my shop

Here it is! A new shawl just added to my Etsy shop. A large and amazingly soft shawl knitted sideways, with a ruffled edge. It was the first shawl I knitted using this method but I'm already in love with it - just have to think about a clever way to combine knitting sideways, short rows ruffle and more lace!

This shawl is available at MadelinesWardrobe Etsy Shop for $79