Tag Archive: wool


Another Four Elements Yarn…

DSCN1687After dyeing the Scottish wool that I had just picked up from the fields, I carded it and then used a wooden hair comb as a makeshift hackle! The colors blended quite beautifully and I span and then navajoplied them.

 

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And somewhere on the web I had seen this brilliant idea to keep the ply from tangling! Works a treat!! Now the yarn is drying, so the final picture will have to wait for tomorrow.

 

HeikeKillet4/2    Et voilà!   DSCN1693

 

I am quite impressed with the way the colors have come out, very soft hues of blue, green and red, held together by the woolwhite. I chose green as the color of the element earth because in my tradition the Earth is called “the Green Diamond” :-).  There is still a lot of wool left so I will make more of this yarn over the next few days.

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Solar Dyeing…

 

The idea is so neat but I had no dye in the house, except for Easter egg colors… Why not? This morning, I filled jars with wool, popped a tablet or two of egg dye on them and filled the jars with a mix of hot water and vinegar. They are now out in the sun and I am more than curious to check out the result later on… and here it is, solar dyed Easteregg coloured Scottish wool!! 🙂

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When I had finished the Vision Quest yarn, I just could not stop but had to go on to the next project. The task was to reflect on what I love about myself because without love for myself I cannot love others, and I cannot be creative.

Some time ago, I had followed a workshop about archetypes and I was reminded of the fact that two elements are quite predominant in me: “water” and “earth”. I use “air” a lot when I deal with life and “fire” is the suppressed element that I only “let out” every now and again. I do love it when all four elements are in balance and I live out of that perfect blend.

I was hit by the realization that the fibres I had used regularly here and there in my creations express the “water-earth” elements perfectly: the beautiful blend of silk that I call in my mind “Iona colors”:

 

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So this would be the core of my yarn, the foundation.

In order to add “fire”, I thought of the gift I had received the day before from Suzy: yellow, red, orange, brown with lots of little added hues and glitter.

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In my mind, the two fibres were clashing, colors and textures were so different but hey, I would try it out anyway. Here’s the spun “fire”:

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Water-earth-fire next to each other:

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So, what about “air”? Air is, well, airy and fluffy and light, clouds sailing lazily across the sky on a warm summer’s day. Ah, how about the soft fur of Harriette, our bunny rabbit, carded with white wool I had gathered on a retreat in Scotland?

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And now all that was left to do was to assemble the three yarns = four elements:DSCN1670DSCN1678

 

As in “real life”, the “air” is very noticeable and here and there the “fire” jumps out!

I really love this yarn :-).

Then I had quite a bit of the “water-earth” and the “fire” yarn left and I thought, what would happen, if I assembled just the two?

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It looks rather striking, I think and leaves me to wonder what my life would be like if I based it on “water-earth” and “fire”, leave out the “air” for a bit?

Here are the two yarns side by side:

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Hawk checking out the finished yarn

Well, there was so much going on over the last few weeks that I had totally neglected my spinning project, Vision Quest. The aim was to express in yarn what I saw on a photo (chosen amongst about ten with different themes). I had planned to try my hand at dying because the yellow of the sun intrigued me. In the end, I used the lovely soft winter fur that our Alaskan Malamut Hawk had been spreading around the house so generously…

 

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The Yarn is a blend of multicolored silk, Malamut fur that I have dyed yellow with food coloring (hello, Rainbow Cake!) and green merino wool carded with green silk. I am quite pleased with the end result.

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At first, I thought that the yarn was too colorful compared with the photo but when I look closely at the darker colors of the road and the greenery lining it, I can see lots of colors and that is what makes it so deep and rich. So, here it is, Road into the Sunset Vision Quest yarn!

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How I do it- Solar Dyeing with Summer Heat!.

After my struggles with my asignment and the completion,of the “Iona” yarn, I had a look at the workbook (yes, I should have probably started there but well…). After reflecting on “what if…” questions, dreams, missed possibilities and letting go of all this, I wondered how a new start into creativity might look. The colours would have to be bright and contrasting, the texture both rough and smooth. Unfortunately, my selection of wool is all in fairly tame colours but I remembered a bright pink silk scarf in my cupboard that I hardly ever wore. I ripped it in long shreds and started my second yarn with this! The locks from the French Alps got mixed with rabbit fluff, very white and soft, plus the bright blue and green ramie that already appeared in the “Iona” yarn. The third thread was in shades of purple, and all three together make a – for me – pretty startling effect! Have a look:

Pink silk scarf shreds…

All three ingredients side by side

Can you see the rabbit fluff ? 🙂

Just a quick snapshot before I block it

 

And her is the finished yarn, “Iona”, very ordinary looking but check out the colours coming out here and there 🙂

 

The Road of Trials continues…

Alpine locks :-)…

 

Road of Trials…

in February I had inscribed for a course of creative spinning, The Journey to the Golden Fleece. Today I was planning to write to my mentor and say that I just couldn't continue with the course because I don't have enough time and I feel totally blocked and it's just not possible…. Then I got an encouraging email this morning and thought, well, maybe this is part of the journey after all and I'm not alone with these feelings!

 

 

So I decided to go ahead with what I had planned: expressing the moment I found my spiritual path in fibre. I discovered the path of the Ceile De, a Celtic order, seven years ago in a time when I was quite low and depressed. So I planned to use a lot of the Welsh black wool and a bit of the brilliant green raw silk I bought a little while ago. I had two approaches. I span the black wool just normally on my heavy handspindle and then the green silk alone on my lightweight topspindle, then I plied them together. That looked quite good although the green is much more noticable than I thought it would be…

 

Then I mixed the green silk with pale green merino wool. I don't have any proper mixing tools so I used my hand carders. I ended up with the green silk just showing up here and there in the finished yarn, much more what I had intended it to do.

 

 

And then I just stared at the rests of fibre on my sofa, black, brown, white wool and some brilliantly coloured blue and green ramie that I got as a gift with my order from Hilltop Cloud Katie.

I started putting them randomly on my carders, first the darker colours, then blending in the white and finally the green and blue. They made three reasonable rolag type thingies (never really done this before, you see!). I'm supposed to clean the house in preparation for guests tomorrow but I couldn't stop and started spinning the fibre. The thread that wound itself around my spindle touched me deeply in my heart: the colours that came out are the colours of the isle of Iona in the Hebrides and strongly linked to our tradition. On Iona I started my spiritual path consciously… This yarn isn't finished yet. I will ply this with white locks of a fleece of a lamb in the French Alps and then post a picture of the end result! I was quite taken aback, though, by this onslaught of inspiration and now definitely need some chocolate :-)…

 

St. Brighid's Well, Iona

White Strand of the Monks, Iona

 

 

Ariadne

Slowly and regularly

Round and round

Dropping to the ground

Pulling and twisting

Tugging at glistening

Fibres in a mound

 

Smell of wool

Shine of silk

Softness of cotton

Sweetness of linen

 

Glorious green

Riotous red

Blazing blue

Yummy yellow

Vibrant violet

Powerful purple

Black, brown and white

 

Slowly and regularly

Round and round

Spins the spindle

Pulling and twisting

Twisting the thread

Tugging at the heart

Of Ariadne