Thursday, December 08, 2016

Fresh as fresh is found

Baby's first painting smock
This cabled baby cardigan is a pattern that I've made once before. I've still got heaps of that white
4-ply cotton from Bendigo.

Cabled baby raglan sweater

After my experiments this past year in jar dyeing I thought it would be fun to try it with a hand-knit. I didn't manage to get a decent photo of the cardigan pre-dyeing but it looked much the same as the one above, which is an old photo of the 2010 version.

IMAG3540 (2)

I have an old bodum (coffee press) from the op shop which I often use for dyeing.

baby's smock

The photo above was taken after the first dying: pretty wild and uneven with big purple blotches. I wasn't thinking pink at all in the planning. I only used red and purple powdered dyes and probably should have realised I'd get some sort of pink overall effect! But I do love that other colours come out when you use the dye straight in its powdered form - here there are blue and yellow bits. I also forgot that I had planned to scatter the powdered dye on wet fabric instead of dry as I did here, as I've liked that effect better before.

I decided it needed a bit more manipulation in the hope of something I could live with (or actually, send as a gift). First, I had another go with more purple dye to try to even things out. Then, straight after that round of dyeing, I didn't even bother to let it dry first, just soaked the whole thing in a very weak solution of Dylon colour run remover. I got the idea from my sister, who had just dyed a silk scarf and wanted the final colour to be a bit less intense.

back of smock

It worked, fading the colours a bit and making it easier on the eye. It's still pretty messy and crazy looking. As baby's dad is an artist and a painter, I thought it kind of worked as "baby's first painting smock,"

dyed cardigan

What I'd like to try next time is applying the dye to the garment inside out for a more subtle effect, because I did sort of like the wrong side a bit better - it was more subtle.

rainbow vest

And this was an idea I almost can't believe I have't had before. I don't think it will be last rainbow for a baby! The basic vest pattern is A vest like Maria's. I was delighted to very quickly find all the colours I needed in my stash of soft 4-ply wools. You can see that the green was a slightly lighter weight yarn and that particular stripe pulls in a bit. (But I'm not too worried: I don't think that will show when a little squishy baby is wearing it). As I had made the vest in a smaller size than it was intended, I added a split and buttons at the neck...but I think even with this the hole for the head may be a little bit tight and perhaps I should have had the whole shoulder able to open. I think that's what I'll do next time I make a baby vest.

rainbow stripe vest

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