For a while now, I’ve been very fascinated by the process of dyeing yarn. Manipulating color is an incredibly fun, tricky, surprising, and rewarding process. I studied fiber arts briefly a couple of years ago while at art school, and continually come back to the principles I learned there: working intuitively, creating a recognizable aesthetic, and pursuing the areas of art and craft that you truly enjoy. I love everything about the dye process, from the mixing of colors, to the myriad methods of dye application, to the time spent over a steaming pot poking dye into yarn with a chopstick. Those lessons I learned in art school have modified the way I go about my dye process; I do keep loose formulas for how I mix colors, but I allow myself ample wiggle room to change things along the way. I can’t say I have a strong aesthetic now, as I’m still ironing out some kinks, but I know what I’m working towards. And as I play with different fibers, and branch out into dyeing fabrics, I’m certainly experimenting with this expansive realm of art and craft.
Now that I’m without a job for the summer, all of this extra time has allowed me to think about what dyeing means to me, and what I want to do with it. Of course it’s a lot of fun, but there’s no way I could keep up with knitting all of the yarn I dye—it would undoubtedly pile up, unused, and out of sight. And I quite like the outcome of recent dyeing adventures, so I don’t want all those lonely skeins to wallow in the cabinets. So in about a week or two (after dad’s 50th birthday party, and my twenty-something birthday), I’ll be opening up an on-line shop with a few of my skeins. Up there is an as-yet-unnamed skein of delicious, burnt-pumpkin-y goodness. I’m so tempted to keep it, but I certainly have student loans to pay down, so I won’t.
“Reading Time with Pickle”
I don’t know what will come of my little shop experiment, but I’m very excited and anxious to see. I certainly don’t expect to make a living out of it, but if I have enough pocket money to keep doing what I’m doing, and maybe afford the occasional pint or book of poetry, I’ll be a happy woman. Scott has been lighting a fire under my bottom to do this for a long time, and has generously provided capital to get me started (by which I mean plenty of undyed yarn). I can’t tell if I’m scared of success, or failure, but either way, I’m a bit nervous sending my goods out into the world!
I’ll be back soon to hash out the details, post some more pictures of the yarns, and talk a bit about the inspiration behind my colors and the name of the brand. I look forward to chronicling this entire process here, and watching how it evolves!