Pretty Ugly

Yesterday we had a dye day at Hill with Gail Callahan. We did the first color on our woven shibori (the light color) and will dye the second color (after the threads are pulled) next week. The skein of yarn above was from the roving I dyed the last dye day with Gail, and the weird-looking bags above are the warps, wefts and shibori from yesterday’s dye day “curing” in plastic wrap. Ewww, looks like something from the butcher forgotten in the back of the fridge. I am supposed to wait until Friday to open and rinse – will I be able to wait???

The first dye day we did with Gail was protein fiber (animal) using acid dyes which, according to Gail are much easier to use then the fiber-reactives which are for use on cellulose fibers (plant). The acid dyes need heat to set them which can be a pain – boiling vats of fleece, etc. Gail has honed this process by wrapping the fiber in plastic and micro-waving to heat. The fiber-reactives are activated with a combination of urea water as a humectant and soda ash as a fixative. Which is better? I suppose it really depends on what one is used to working with – they both seem to have their pros and cons. I will post after photos of the warps once rinsed and dried